Are Christians allowed to play the lottery? The answer is a resounding yes! There is no definitive answer in the Bible regarding whether or not it is a sin to play the lottery, so it all falls on your convictions. If you feel like playing the lottery is a sin, it is one for you – but it may not be for the next person.
Why Christians Play the Lottery
Greed is a sin. Loving money more than God is a sin. Playing the lottery can lead to dangerous activities such as gambling addiction or recklessly seeking wealth. As long as you remain healthy and don’t use gambling as a way to put yourself and your family in danger, there shouldn’t be an issue.
Some see playing the lottery as “throwing money away” – a sin in itself. The Bible talks about how you should work diligently for your money and view it as a gift from the Lord. Gambling can also lead to covetous behavior, which is a sin as well.
There is some psychology behind why people continue to play the lottery regardless of the slim chances of winning. However, playing the lottery can also be a way to give back to your community.
Playing the lottery can also be a fun experience, like playing a game. As long as you don’t intend to pursue wealth at all costs, you can absolutely play the lottery as someone who is deeply committed to their Christian faith. Ensure you play for fun and not just to win, because money is the root of all evil.
Lotteries Giving Back
Lotteries often participate in charitable giving and can be an excellent way to give back to your local community. The Virginia Lottery contributes money to Virginia’s public education system in grades K-12. In the last year, the Virginia lottery gave over $2.1 million a day to public schools in Virginia.
The use of the proceeds from the Virginia lottery has evolved with time and now caters to educational purposes only. The State Lottery Proceeds fund passed in 2000 with over 80% of voters in agreement. All unclaimed prizes in the Virginia Lottery also go to the Literary Fund, which goes towards technology upgrades for public schools as well as renovations and construction.
A Game of Chance
As a devout Christian, you believe all of your earnings are a gift from God for working diligently and not having idle or lazy hands. You trust in God to take care of you and your family and don’t need to play the lottery in hopes of striking it rich. That’s all fine and good.
When your youth group at church does a raffle to raise money, you gladly appease them. Why wouldn’t you, when playing a game of chance can provide funds to public schools or give its proceeds to charitable causes and churches?
Playing the lottery can be fun to donate money to those in need, just like buying tickets for a raffle or expensive popcorn from a kid participating in a school fundraiser. Games of chance are all about perspective. If you wish to play the lottery, it does not make you a sinner. It makes you interested in fun and games, which is not a sin or a crime.
Poverty and the Lottery
The controversy around people living in poverty playing the lottery in hopes of getting rich is devastating. However, that is their prerogative and their mindset. If the lottery wasn’t around, don’t you think they would find other avenues to waste their money that don’t include food or a roof above their heads?
They should be trusting in the word of God and working to make their money and not spending it on schemes to get rich quickly. So, in a sense, they could be sinning depending on their outlook and personal convictions. It is not our job to judge someone else.
All you can do is trust your belief system. If you want to play the lottery and feel like it’s not going to harm anyone, go ahead. You can play responsibly, have a little fun, and give back in your own small way. When you know where your money is going, it may be easier to fork it over rather than donate to charities that might not always have the best intentions despite their claims.
Christians Playing the Lottery
Proceed with caution and play with discernment when you play the lottery. Playing the lottery isn’t an explicit sin if you are devout in your Christian faith – it is your particular convictions and intentions that might make playing the lottery a sin for you.