Friday, June 30, 2006

Why we like going to Vegas

ChristianMan has handed many of us the idea that our heart is wicked and that left to ourselves we will always hit that slippery slope to destruction. An Old Testament passage is always used to reinforce this, all the while overlooking what the New Testament says about rebirth, renewal and restoration. I am of the mind that we have been duped, misled to think that we are just one step away from oblivion. And where does that leave us if ChristianMan believe he is to live in fear of failure? My road has led me to consider all the actions that have been labeled sinful and ask the simple question, "Why?" If the Bible teaches us that Satan is only a deceiver, not a creator, it would seem to make sense that the core of all sin is something good that has gone wrong. I think most Christ-followers would affirm that sex is good at its core, but that it has been the target of deception due to its importance to the human heart. I must admit that one activity I am drawn toward that I could probably go overboard on is gambling. There is something about the energy of standing around a craps table that's really on. Again, I ask, "Why?" Why do we love it so much. ChristianMan has convinced me that it is because I love the darkness and the flesh and should rather love being in church on Sundays alot more. But in keeping with the idea that the Enemy is only a deceiver, is there anything about gambling that good? If we are made in His image, what about gambling is like God? Philip Yancey shed some light on this for me. He wrote a book called "Disappointment with God" that I recently read. He addresses the person who is struggling with God at some level. When he gets to the part of Job, he describes the scenario in language that I've never heard before. He calls the interaction with Satan, "The Great Wager." God put something on the line. He laid down a bet with Satan, took a huge risk on the man Job and told Satan, "You've got yourself a bet!" God believed in man enough to stake something on it, to let Job be involved in the action. Why would He do this? A closing thought: Could it be that God is a risk taker. Any free choice is a gamble, and God believed in His glory enough to put it at stake, knowing that Satan would accuse Him and knowing that the race of Men would turn from Him. The difference in His gamble and ours is the payout. We settle for a mere monetary one. His is eternal.

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