What Does the Bible Say About Gambling: The Dangers of Greed and Covetousness Explored

The Bible doesn’t explicitly mention gambling. Yet, it’s filled with lessons and guidance that can be interpreted and applied to the concept of gambling. This article aims to shed light on what the Bible says about gambling, even if indirectly.

From parables about stewards to teachings on the love of money, we’ll explore different biblical perspectives that could influence a person’s view on gambling. Whether you’re a casual gambler or someone wrestling with this activity’s moral implications, this exploration could offer some food for thought.

We’ll delve into various scriptures, drawing out potential lessons and principles. The goal isn’t to pass judgment but to provide insight. So, if you’ve ever wondered what the Good Book might have to say about your lottery ticket or casino visit, keep reading.

Lesson 1: The Love of Money

An important perspective from the Bible that could be applied to gambling revolves around the idea of money. 1 Timothy 6:10 states “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil.” This brings to light a key principle that might connect the domain of gambling with the teachings of the Bible.

It’s good to clarify that the scripture does not imply money itself is evil. Instead, it’s the skewed love or obsession with money that could lead to trouble. Gambling often encourages the desire for quick wealth, potentially causing individuals to grow excessively fond of money.

Moreover, a closer investigation into Proverbs 13:11 reveals that “Wealth gained hastily will dwindle, but whoever gathers little by little will increase it.” This verse seems to discourage the pursuit of fast money, which is inherently promoted by gambling practices.

One of the key attributes of gambling is the reliance on luck or chance to acquire wealth quickly. This goes against the biblical principle of gaining wealth gradually through hard work. Proverbs 14:23 confirms this when it says, “In all toil there is profit, but mere talk tends only to poverty.”

From these scriptures, it can be inferred the Bible discourages the haste and overvaluation of monetary gain. While it may not directly address gambling, these topics offer valuable lessons for anyone engaging in or considering such activities.

The love of money is an intriguing subject addressed in the Bible and its potential influence on gambling habits offers much to ponder.

Lesson 2: Stewardship and Responsible Behavior

It’s essential to take a magnifying glass to another important dimension when discussing what the Bible says about gambling – stewardship and responsible behavior. Stewardship, as often described within biblical context, is the act of managing and taking good care of resources one is given.

When stewards of God’s resources, believers are expected to demonstrate responsible behavior. Yet, does gambling align with this biblically ingrained tenet? It’s a question worth pondering upon.

The Parable of the Talents in Matthew 25:14-29 serves as a brilliant illustration of biblical stewardship. Here, servants are rewarded based on how they’ve used their master’s resources. One servant buries his talent and does nothing with it, prompting the master’s wrath upon his return. The other two, however, multiply their talents and receive commendation.

The lesson, in summary, underscores the importance of using resources wisely and productively. From a biblical perspective, squandering resources on gambling seems contradictory to the ethic of biblical stewardship.

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Proverbs 28:20 further reinforces the value of hard work over fast money: “A faithful person will be richly blessed, but one eager to get rich will not go unpunished.” It’s not difficult to interpret the cautionary tone against get-rich-quick schemes, often associated with gambling. Consequently, the appeal of instant wealth promised by gambling appears contrary to the teachings on responsible behavior and stewardship.

Yet, is this to say that every act of wager or bet is an offense to the biblical principles? That’s not necessarily accurate. There are instances where taking a significant financial risk, like starting a business, might be viewed as stewardship. The difference lies in the intention. The latter does not intend to become rich overnight but seeks sustainable growth through persistent effort, clearly resonating with the biblical instruction for careful management of resources.

The examination of stewardship and responsible behavior in the Bible reveals the complexity of its application to gambling.

Lesson 3: Honesty and Integrity in Money Matters

Continuing the examination of biblical perspectives related to gambling, this section delves into the crucial aspect of honesty and integrity in money matters. The Bible emphasizes the significance of honesty in all our dealings, including financial transactions. A key illustrative element of this is found in Proverbs 11:1, where it says, “A false balance is abomination to the LORD: but a just weight is his delight.” This message strongly implicates the practice of gambling, where the pursuit of wealth often involves manipulation and deceit.

In relation to gambling, it’s worth noting that honest means of earning – through consistent work and effort – is encouraged. In contrast, the easy gains from gambling may not reflect the same level of honesty and integrity expected in the Bible. 2 Thessalonians 3:10 declares, “For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.” This starkly reveals the biblical outlook of favoring honest labor over easy access to wealth.

Another crucial scripture reflecting these principles is Deuteronomy 25:13-16. It reinforces the need for just measures and weights in business dealings – a concept seemingly incompatible with gambling’s inherently unpredictable outcomes.

One might say that the essence of biblical teachings advocates for strong values of truthfulness, fairness, and respect for every individual’s labor. In contrast, gambling’s rewards are often attained at the expense of others – which can contradict these principles. Yet, it’s also recognized that not all betting or wagering practices would automatically violate these principles.

Continuing to explore the moral complexities of gambling within a biblical perspective, the next section will focus on moderation and self-control in gambling.

Lesson 4: Prioritizing God and His Kingdom

Aligning one’s life priorities with the principles enumerated in the Bible takes center stage when discussing gambling from a biblical perspective. Under the bright light of scriptures, Matthew 6:33 emits a clear message: “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”

Diving into the essence of this scripture, it’s interpreted as a mandate for Christians to prioritize God’s kingdom and righteousness above all else, including the pursuit of wealth. How does this connect with gambling, you may ask? Let’s dissect it.

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Gambling often emerges from a desire to accumulate wealth quickly without hard work. The appeal of instant riches can sometimes overshadow the command to put God and His kingdom first. Money, in such instances, may accidentally assume a god-like stature in a person’s life, thereby breaching the priority guidelines prescribed in the Bible.

To delve deeper, Exodus 20:3 states, “You shall have no other gods before me.” In terms of gambling, this scripture could suggest that an overwhelming pursuit of wealth through games of chance could unintentionally create a ‘god of money’ that stands above the God of the Bible in a person’s life.

A biblical principle emphasizing the dangers of wealth obsession surfaces in 1 Timothy 6:10: “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.”

Indeed, the obsession with wealth can lead individuals astray and bring about unnecessary sorrow. It’s crucial to note, though, that the scripture does not condemn money but the excessive love of it – a critical point establishing that earning money itself is not wrong, but the means and intention behind its acquisition are what come under biblical scrutiny.

As we journey forth in our exploration of what the Bible says about gambling, let’s remember these lessons: prioritizing God, His Kingdom, and practicing caution not to let the love of money or its pursuit cloud our judgment and faith. In the next section, we shall grasp the role of contentment and its worth in the gambler’s life from a biblical perspective.

Lesson 5: The Dangers of Greed and Covetousness

Casino lights flicker enticingly; stashes of cash beckon. Yet, the biblically-informed individual understands that an uncontrolled desire for wealth can lead down a dangerous path—a path that seems to glitter at first; yet quickly leads to dissatisfaction, heartache, and even ruin.

The Bible is clear on this matter. In Luke 12:15, Jesus advises his followers to steer clear from covetousness: “Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.” Herein, he warns of the trap that bedazzles many a gambler – the belief that more money equates to a more fulfilled life.

Similarly, Proverbs 28:22 warns of dire consequences for those obsessed with wealth: “A man with an evil eye hastens after riches, and does not consider that poverty will come upon him.” This scripture subtly unravels the truth about the end result of unchecked greed; it leads to not growth, but loss – not only financially, but also in terms of peace, joy, and spiritual wellbeing.

• Uncontrolled desire for wealth: Dangerous path
• More money ≠ More fulfilled life
• Unchecked greed leads to extreme loss

Gambling, as it is understood today, inherently feeds the flame of covetousness. It tempts with illusions of easy wealth and the greed that follows is destructive. But the Bible encourages a different attitude towards wealth, prompting believers to maintain a balance. Accumulating wealth is not wrong, but it’s the unchecked desire for it that leads astray. Paul, in 1 Timothy 6:10, reminds us that it is “the love of money” that serves as a root for all forms of evil.

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Thus, gambling poses a unique challenge for the believer. It pits the lure of instant wealth against the biblical call to patience, diligence, and contentment. The next segment will delve further into this conflict and explore what the Bible suggests as the solution.


Understanding what the Bible says about gambling helps believers navigate this tricky issue. The Bible doesn’t directly mention gambling, yet it’s clear about the dangers of greed and the importance of contentment. The unchecked desire for wealth can lead people astray and gambling often fosters this unhealthy craving.

Believers are called to live a life of patience, diligence, and contentment. Gambling, with its quick gains and losses, challenges these virtues. It’s essential for believers to remember that the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. By avoiding the pitfalls of gambling, they can stay true to their faith and live a life that aligns with biblical teachings.

The Bible offers a solution to the conflict posed by gambling—focus on cultivating a spirit of contentment, and avoid the lure of quick, easy wealth. This approach not only aligns with biblical principles but also promotes a healthier, more balanced lifestyle.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the article about?

The article discusses the topic of gambling in relation to the Bible, focusing on the dangers of greed and covetousness. It explores scriptures that caution against the pursuit of wealth and emphasize the importance of contentment.

Q: What is the main message of the article?

The main message of the article is that while accumulating wealth is not inherently wrong, the unchecked desire for it can lead astray. Gambling poses a challenge for believers as it contradicts the biblical calls for patience, diligence, and contentment.

Q: Why is gambling considered conflicting with biblical teachings?

Gambling goes against the biblical call for patience, diligence, and contentment. It encourages a mindset of quick and easy gains, which can lead to greed and an unhealthy focus on wealth accumulation.

Q: What solution does the Bible offer for the conflict between gambling and biblical teachings?

The Bible encourages believers to find contentment in what they have and to trust in God’s provision. It suggests relying on hard work, wise stewardship, and seeking satisfaction in godly pursuits rather than relying on chance and luck.

Q: Is accumulating wealth seen as wrong in the Bible?

Accumulating wealth is not inherently wrong in the Bible. It’s the unchecked desire for wealth and the love of money that are warned against. The Bible emphasizes the importance of contentment and warns about the dangers of greed and covetousness.

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