MARVIN L. WEIR
One does not have to do very much research before finding out that crime figures of all types are tied in with gambling. Gambling has become a “respectable” (?) and very popular sin within our society, and each year it makes more and more people its prisoner. Instead of being encouraged, gambling needs to be exposed for the menace to society that it is.
Gambling has been defined over the years as risking what
is yours to get what belongs to someone else with no service rendered and
no merchandise exchanged. Thomas F. Eaves defined gambling as follows:
“A simple definition of gambling would be, desiring the possession or possessions of another (prize) the gambler creates a risk (that of losing his own possession) in an attempt through chance to gain the possession or possessions of another with nothing given in exchange. Gambling takes many forms: cards games, dice, numbers, betting on elections, buying sweepstakes tickets, betting on horse races, slot machines, betting on sporting events, various types of sports pools, punch board, bingo (for money or prizes), buying tickets in raffles, betting on recreational activities, matching for cokes, and even pitching pennies. It should be also noted that whether you are gambling or not does not depend upon the amount you are risking. It may be five thousand or five dollars, it may be fifty cents or one cent — the principle is the same, only the amount differs (Thomas F. Eaves, Gambling And The Bible, Fort Worth: Star Bible Publications, n.d., Tract No. 77, p. 5).”
Gambling And Taking Risks
Supporters of gambling like to contend that all of life is a gamble. They say that where “chance” is involved gambling occurs. Athens Clay Pullias addresses this charge as follows:
“The gambler often justifies his gambling by saying that everything in life involves chance, or he may say that everything we do involves risk and danger. These things, of course, are true. What then is the clear line of distinction between gambling which is a vicious and corrupting sin, and the taking of risks that are essential to productive living? Gambling differs in that it involves the creation of unnecessary risks, which may endanger financial security. The creation of these risks undermines, and eventually will destroy the Christian virtues of productive work, thrift, and the desire to earn what one claims the right to have. Gambling is sinful because it involves the desire to obtain something for nothing, which itself is a violation of Christian ethics (Athens Clay Pullias, What Is Gambling, Nashville: Tract by author, pp. 1-2).”
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