Click here to learn more about the author. Click here for ordering information using your credit card.
Alabama resoundingly defeated the powerful gambling machine in 1999. However, this by no means ended the desires of those that are bound and determined to bring legalized, gambling to this great state. Efforts are underway now to resurrect this issue again. Since history repeats itself, most politicians know that the public (Christians in particular) grows weary of fighting the same battles once victory has been tasted.
Generally the losses represent non-disposable income designated for the rent, doctors bill, or next weeks grocery money. In California, one entire chain of grocery stores (Holiday Quality Foods) recently quit selling lottery tickets altogether. The general manager of the chain discovered the stores experienced about 10% decrease in profits since they began selling tickets. After $1,000,000 in ticket sales, it was realized that there was a decrease of $1.00 in food sales for every $1.00 of lottery tickets sold.
What is the Lottery?
The lottery depresses legitimate business by redirecting spending. In order for a lottery to survive, it must cannibalize the economy.
Facts you may not know:
According to a Harvard Medical School study, at least 75 percent of all high school students have gambled. So many teenagers are gambling that almost four percent (more than 2.2 million adolescents) are already addicted to gambling.
Gambling Addictions Wont Get Better
Harvard researchers dont think adolescents will quit gambling, and a state lottery in Alabama wont help matters. The researchers predict an additional 5.7 million teenagers are at risk of becoming problem gamblers.
Gambling vs. Alcoholism
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has indicated that gambling activity among that states students is second only to alcohol in prevalence among illegal youth activity. Almost 70 percent of seventh graders have bought lottery tickets, according to the study.
Gambling vs. Drugs
In a Louisiana State University-Shreveport study, 86 percent of sixth through 12th graders have gambled, making gambling more common than drug use.
Minors in Possession
In Indiana, 90 percent of minors have gambled, with 65 percent of those youth playing scratch-off lottery games.
Keeping Up With Adults
In a New York study, 75 percent of teens surveyed said they have gambled in the past year. Despite their substantially-lower incomes, adolescents spent almost a third of what adults spend in that state.
In 1997, one study showed that more than 60 percent of senior citizens (age 65 and up) had gambled in the past year. That number was up from 50 percent in 1995.
Targeting Senior Citizens
In Maryland, the advertising industry has targeted senior citizens as potential gamblers. That state has gone so far as to introduce a "Lottery on Wheels" campaign where gambling machines are actually taken to the seniors so they can play. The campaign was pulled when the AARP asked Marylands attorney general to investigate.
According to Pat Fowler, executive director for the Florida Council on Compulsive Gambling, seniors are particularly vulnerable to the lure of gambling for several reasons:
Fastest Growing Group of Problem Gamblers
In terms of those people calling for help, senior citizens are the fastest growing group of problem gamblers. In 1997 Minnesota, saw an increase of 200 percent in problem gamblers over a five-year period.
Of the senior-citizen problem gamblers in Florida in 1995, 72 percent said the source of their problem was the lottery.
Facing Financial Ruin
The spread of legalized gambling across the nation has led to an increase in the number of senior citizens who are facing financial ruin because of gambling addictions. Seniors live on a fixed income and are often financially crushed by the time they realize they need help.
Seeing a no-hitter baseball game (1 in 1,347)
Finding a pearl in an oyster (1 in 12,000)
Being killed by a dog (1 in 700,000)
Dying in a bathtub (1 in 1 million)
Being struck by lightening (1 in 1,900,000)
Winning the California lottery (1 in 23,000,000)
Winning a recent powerball lottery (1 in 80 million)
What does the Bible have to say about gambling?
The tenth commandment states:
Exodus 20:17 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's.
For testimonys sake and the love of the lost and your fellow Christian, you are not to covet.
Romans 13:8 Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law. 9 For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. 10 Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.
Colossians 3:5 Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry:
Ephesians 4:28 Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.
2 Thessalonians 3:10 For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat. 11 For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies. 12 Now them that are such we command and exhort by our Lord Jesus Christ, that with quietness they work, and eat their own bread.
1 Corinthians 6:12 All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.
Expedient defined: "useful, proper, profitable." You are not to partake in anything that can be addicting.
Proverbs 13:11 Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished: but he that gathereth by labour shall increase.
Ecclesiastes 5:10 He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver; nor he that loveth abundance with increase: this is also vanity. 11 When goods increase, they are increased that eat them: and what good is there to the owners thereof, saving the beholding of them with their eyes? 12 The sleep of a labouring man is sweet, whether he eat little or much: but the abundance of the rich will not suffer him to sleep.
1 Timothy 6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. 8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. 9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. 11 But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.
Luke 12:42 And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season? 43 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.
The accumulation of wealth through exploitation of others is condemned. The lottery is exploitation. Honest work and honest wages go together.
1 Corinthians 10:31 Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.
2 Corinthians 6:17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
We are to separate ourselves from the ungodly. Judge for yourselves how you would rate Las Vegas, NV with the effects of gambling they have sown a culture of greed and exploitation:
1st in suicide
1st in divorce
1st in high school dropouts
1st in homicide against women
at the top in gambling addictions
3rd in bankruptcies
3rd in abortion
4th in rape
4th in out-of-wedlock births
4th in alcohol related deaths
5th in crime
6th in the number of prisoners locked up
last in voter participation
The yellow pages in Las Vegas lists 136 pages of advertisements for prostitution by its various names. No wonder they call it "Sin City."
A recent magazine listed Las Vegas as "One of the 10 Most Corrupt Cities in America."
Eight months after casinos opened in Gulfport, Mississippi, the Gulfport Police Department noted the following increases: murder increased by 75%; rape increased by 200%; robbery increased by 311%; assaults increased by 64%; burglary increased by 100%; vehicle theft increased by 160%. Three years after casinos arrived, Atlantic City went from 50th to 1st in per-capita crime.
If you drive into a state with legalized gambling whether it be a state-sponsored lottery or a casino-filled strip many times you can see the faces of $10 million winners smiling brightly on road-side billboards.
What you dont see, though, are the gambling losers. Consider a few of these stories, taken from an article about Tunica, Miss., by John Lang.
Keith Darnell Davis went through all his savings and robbed an Arkansas bank to replace his gambling losses. After robbing the bank, police chased Keith for a while, then were forced to shoot at his car. Keith tried to escape from police by leaving his car and jumping off the Hernando DeSoto Bridge into the Mississippi River. He never came out of the water.
Ronnie Austin, a Memphis-area firefighter, lost at the craps table in Horseshoe Casino in Tunica. Ronnie left his wife, who was still gambling at the casino, walked into the parking garage, and killed himself with his 9mm pistol. This suicide was caught on the casinos surveillance camera.
Shannon Marie Sanderson, a young mother of three who won $4,000 at Sams Town Casino, was followed from there, abducted, shot dead and dumped in an abandoned shed near Eufora, Miss.
Norma Jane Crutcher won $134,000 playing slots one year. By the next year, she had blown $250,000 in the casinos and declared bankruptcy, leaving her husband owing $125,000 on the home she lost gambling.
Still another person tells of being so addicted to gambling that he almost drove to Tunica recently, even though hes facing federal bank fraud charges that stem from his addiction, and if hes caught violating probation in Tunica he faces 10 years in prison and fines of $250,000. "That didnt deter me," he said. "What stopped me was a wreck in the road. I took it as an unlucky sign."
Some addicts spend so much money on gambling that they wind up on the street. In a random survey of more than 1,110 people in 26 Rescue Mission shelters in 1998, 18 percent cited gambling as the reason for their homelessness. Of the people surveyed, 86 percent said they used to gamble or still do.
Some claim that the lottery will not bring casinos to the state of Alabama. This is simply not true.
We are not Georgia:
The most convincing Bible proof is when Jesus hung dying on the cross. The Roman soldiers cared only for who would benefit from His loss. They cast lots to see who would get His clothing.
Matthew 27:35 And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots.
(Many of the statistics have been taken from various sources over the years and there is no way to adequately give credit where due. If any person finds an original source, credit will gladly be acknowledged.)
During the previous gambling battle, Dr. Stauffer was in the heat of the battle. After preaching a message that was widely disseminated among other church groups, politicians, and the media, he was asked on numerous occasions to speak on the subject. He spoke at both Senate committees and had his message transcribed and sent out to 500 churches state-wide. He also appeared on television, including live interviews, following the Senate committee votes.
Dr. Douglas D. Stauffer was born in Huntsville, Alabama. He was saved at the age of twenty while a member of the Air Force, stationed in Florida. Upon his honorable discharge, he was awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal for meritorious service and returned to his home in Pennsylvania.
After graduating from The Pennsylvania State University with a B.S. degree in Accounting, he began attending Bible College. The Lord dealt with him about preaching during his first semester; whereupon, he dedicated himself to preaching in rescue missions, juvenile detention centers, nursing homes, jails and prisons. In addition, he had a radio broadcast three times a week. He graduated with a B.A. in Bible and was ordained.
The year following Bible College, Dr. Stauffer passed all parts of the CPA exam. He then worked as Controller of several organizations. Later, he gave up his work as Chief Financial Officer of a multi-million dollar company along with managing his own firm when God began dealing with him about going full-time in the ministry. Since that time he has earned his Th.M in Theology and Ph.D in Religion. Dr. Stauffer currently serves as president of Victory Bible Institute and Theological Seminary in Millbrook, Alabama; president of Faith Rescue Mission in Montgomery, Alabama; and president, of Key of Knowledge Ministries. He has thousands of hours teaching experience, ten years serving in pastoral ministries, and authored three books. Doug and his wife, Judy, are blessed with two children, Justin and Heather. Currently, they traveling while Brother Stauffer teaches and preaches.
Click here to learn more about the author. Click here for ordering information using your credit card.