Conservative Christians can’t talk about gambling, if we don’t see the bigger picture.
We must understand that gambling is an issue of economic justice. We can’t really address the gambling issue if we ignore the larger issue of poverty. Evangelicals who don’t care (as does Jesus, the prophets, and the apostles) about the poor can’t speak adequately to the gambling issues. By this I don’t simply mean caring about individual poor people but about the way social and political and corporate structures contribute to the misery of the impoverished (James 5:1-6). We will never get to the nub of the gambling issue if we don’t get at a larger vision of poverty and the limits of commercial power.
Too many of our “opponents” see us as morally-prissy Victorians who don’t want people doing “naughty” things in our presence. Let’s demolish that pretense, by being the gritty colony of the kingdom that sees the economically downtrodden among us as, when in Christ, “heirs of the kingdom” (Jas. 2:5). And let’s hold out a vision, for all of us, of an inheritance that comes not through predation, and not through luck, but through sonship, through grace.