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Published 12:00 am Wednesday, August 4, 1999


  Wash. Post


  Opinions Letters to the Editor Editorials Columns

Get High on Life

Leonard Gray / L’Observateur / August 4, 1999

A report recently said that Americans spent $100 million more on gambling than on food. Maybe that’s the solution to our overly-obesenation to control their eating disorder. The gambling industry uses food toattract many customers. Some people, however, are smart. They travel tothe gambling casinos and riverboats, eat the best food, and don’t gamble.

Now that’s smart, as long as you don’t overeat.

Is overeating a sin? According to God’s law, it is called gluttony. Isgambling wrong? Yes. Gambling makes money the highest good in life. “Forthe love of money is the root of all evil.” (I Timothy 6:10) It also violatesthe Bible’s work ethic – getting something for nothing. Gambling hurts thepoor the most. “Whoever mocketh the poor reproacheth his Maker.”(Proverbs 17:5) Last but most important, gambling violates the Spirit of Christ. Life is nota gamble. Life is a carefully calculated plan. The Christian refuses togamble his soul. He believes the Bible when it says to repent of your sinsand believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. The sure road is the well-ordered,responsible life of faith in God and hard work by man.

Have I ever gambled? Yes. I loved going to the racetrack and everythingabout it – the atmosphere, the crowd, the beautiful horses, and the excitement of betting. I would stay in the clubhouse section of the FairGrounds where the rich and middle class were. You could eat, drink andgamble there. A few times, I drifted over to the grandstand section. As arule (and I realize there are exceptions to every rule), the less fortunate assembled in this section. It would grieve my heart to see some of thesepeople hoping to strike it rich. I recall how sad this was. I never spentmuch time there because it was depressing. I always made my way back tothe comfortable clubhouse and blocked out the misery and despair on the faces of these poor people who were hoping to hit it big.

Many of my friends defend their trips to the casino and playing the lottery by stating that they can control their gambling. That’s well and good, butit is still supporting an industry that violates the Spirit of Christ.

If you are looking for a sure bet, I guarantee that many of the people will disagree with this article.

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