Born and raised in the Christian faith, I recall my late grandparents, parents and others of the same faith always talking about why Christians shouldn’t buy the lottery, quoting “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.” Psalm 23 : 1
As a teenager I started questioning where in the Bible does it say that buying a lottery ticket is wrong? I couldn’t find any verse stating that clearly and convincing. There are several verses referring to earning money honestly or by usury, and the scripture commonly quoted by many “for the love of money is the root of all evil.” wasn’t cutting it for me. Truth is, the lack of money, more often than not, could also be considered the root of much evil. Let that sink in. My doubts were reinforced by the following incident.
At the opening of a Christian shelter for the homeless and addicts, several organizations contributed with donations, among which was the National Lottery. Much to my surprise, the donation in the form of a bank cheque was gladly accepted by the minister and with a big smile. Mind you, the minister did not refuse the cheque, as being evil or money from ‘the devil.’ On the contrary, scripture was quoted to justify the receipt of the cheque. “Everything under heaven is mine, the gold, and the silver ….” Needless to say, one can find scripture to condone or condemn any action or behavior.So this incident kept me busy for a while, but I dare not discuss the matter with my parents or other church folk. At the time I was earning a small salary, but on my own I decided, that besides tithes and offerings to the church, occasionally I would also buy myself a piece of ‘katootje’ as it’s called in Aruba. Cautiously, I shared my ‘lottery gospel’ with a close friend, who was left dumbstricken.
Fast forward to later years, as an adult I was now convinced that nothing was wrong with trying my luck wisely. If the minister back then accepted the cheque, who knows “God might supply my needs according to His riches in glory,..” as well. Off I went now purchasing on a regular basis, though I never won any amount of significance. During my personal financial crunch, I even took a monthly subscription to write off one ticket from my bank account. “The lottery bus wasn’t going to drive through my neighborhood sharing out cheques and I miss out on a piece of the pie. Hell NO!”
At the same time, I was digging deeper into my spiritual life with the sacred scriptures and interpretations. Sitting in my forest view balcony, during my morning devotion, I was reading from the book of 2 Chronicles. I’ve read that book countless times, however, this time the Word arrived with conviction. ‘The man of God replied, “The Lord is able to give you much more than this!” 2 Chronicles 25:9.
Wow! “Lord, you are Jehovah Jihreh, my Provider. And you will supply my needs as promised in your word and give me much more than the Landsloterij, Staatsloterij, Postcodeloterij or any other lottery. Please, forgive my unbelief.” Immediatelty, I cancelled my monthly subscription and never again did I purchase a lottery ticket anywhere. Now I was no longer acting out of tradition or religion, but out of personal conviction!
Sharing my story is not to convince you not to buy lottery tickets. Go Ahead, and do your thing 😉
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