Lottery Messages


The drawing of lots for the allocation of something, usually money. Lotteries are sometimes criticized as addictive forms of gambling, but in some cases the money they raise is used for good public causes.

The odds of winning a lottery are very low. However, many people still play the lottery regularly, contributing billions of dollars annually to government receipts. Lottery players can also waste large amounts of money buying tickets that don’t pay off, or they may end up in debt.

Many people buy lottery tickets because they hope that their problems will disappear if they win the lottery. They fall for the lie that money can solve all of life’s problems. This is covetousness, and it violates the biblical command not to covet money or anything that belongs to your neighbors (Exodus 20:17).

There are two primary messages that are coded into lotteries. One is that it is fun to play the lottery, and this is a message that appeals to some. But it obscures the regressivity of the practice and glosses over the fact that lotteries are a form of gambling. There are many people who are addicted to gambling and spend large amounts of their incomes purchasing lottery tickets each week. The other major message that is coded into lotteries is that the money raised is being used for public good. In reality, most of this money is going toward tax relief for the wealthy, rather than to public programs that are primarily helping those in need.