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  #1  
Old 01-07-2007, 07:27 PM
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Gregory Perry Sr. Gregory Perry Sr. is offline
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Question Is Playing Cards a SIN??

OK people...all my christian life I have heard people either say outright or imply that playing cards is some kind of sin. I don't gamble....I'm 52 years young and I don't recall ever playing a hand of poker in my life...don't even know how. I have played some blackjack but just for fun and I don't play anymore because I know it is one of the prime gambling games. I do play Solitaire of several different varieties and have played Hearts and Spades.....and oh yeah...Go Fish and War.....but no gambling games. What is it about cards that is supposed to be so evil. The only thing I can come up with is the wasting of time that we as christians are supposed to be redeeming. I would confess to wasting too much good time that could be used far more profitably. But the cards...what is wrong with them? BIBLE or at least sound BIBLE PRINCIPLE please.

Thanks, Greg Perry Sr.
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Old 01-07-2007, 07:38 PM
Grasshopper Grasshopper is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregory Perry Sr.
OK people...all my christian life I have heard people either say outright or imply that playing cards is some kind of sin. I don't gamble....I'm 52 years young and I don't recall ever playing a hand of poker in my life...don't even know how. I have played some blackjack but just for fun and I don't play anymore because I know it is one of the prime gambling games. I do play Solitaire of several different varieties and have played Hearts and Spades.....and oh yeah...Go Fish and War.....but no gambling games. What is it about cards that is supposed to be so evil. The only thing I can come up with is the wasting of time that we as christians are supposed to be redeeming. I would confess to wasting too much good time that could be used far more profitably. But the cards...what is wrong with them? BIBLE or at least sound BIBLE PRINCIPLE please.

Thanks, Greg Perry Sr.
I think you would get better responses on the Fundamentalist Board.
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  #3  
Old 01-07-2007, 07:39 PM
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I don't see any problem with using cards for a game, a game board, or even a Bingo game without a prize. I play euchre at the Senior's Club, no money.

When I was younger we called them the Devil's Deck, but then on Sundays, we didn't leave the parlour except to eat and the loo. We certainly didn't go outdoors to play on the Lord's Day.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 01-07-2007, 07:42 PM
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Life's a gamble. Go jump off a cliff!
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Old 01-07-2007, 07:43 PM
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I think there were so many men who came home late on payday and had gambled their entire pay checks away and no way to feed or care for their families is why it became such an evil to play cards. Just my thought on it but I knew how gamblers were treated and what they were called as their families had nothing to eat. Also, it seem to be a desease, for the men who did gamble couldn't hardly quit for their life.
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Old 01-07-2007, 07:44 PM
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If you're not gambling, it is not a sin. Now, if your use of cards causes someone to stumble, don't play cards around that person.
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Old 01-07-2007, 08:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brother Bob
I think there were so many men who came home late on payday and had gambled their entire pay checks away and no way to feed or care for their families is why it became such an evil to play cards. Just my thought on it but I knew how gamblers were treated and what they were called as their families had nothing to eat. Also, it seem to be a desease, for the men who did gamble couldn't hardly quit for their life.
Now many have substituted the stock market and the lottery.
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Old 01-07-2007, 09:16 PM
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Card games are games. In itself it is not a sin, anymore than football (without gambling). I wouldn’t blanket gambling as a sin (but that’ just me). I don’t do it, anyway.

Where gambling is a sin is that it is not being good stewards of what God gave us. Credit Cards, actually credit in general, has the same effect as gambling.

Paying $20 to enter a poker game, if the $20 is simply entertainment money, I think isn't a big problem (if it is legal in area), but it leads to temptation and can get out of hand. Credit cards have had the same effect, probably distroying more marriages and families. Yet many Chrisitan organizations accept these cards (this board does).
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Old 01-08-2007, 12:46 AM
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I disagree with JonC's assessment of gambling.
Any gambling is sin. Why? Because it is seeking to gain money without working for it. One is leaving the gain of money up to the chance of the deal. This is no different than the lottery. Pure chance. This is not Godly. And puhleeze, don't anybody who is leaning to reformed theology declare that there is no chance it is all of god! Puhleeze!

As far as cards being evil I think it hails back further than we might think. Back in the day, (even today) there were/are spiritualists/mediums who use certain cards for the practice of divination. I think the association grew from this. I haven't researched it but I think I am right.

Can anyone confirm?
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Old 01-08-2007, 02:37 AM
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Default Playing Cards

It's my day off. I think I'll take a home run swing at this topic.

There was a little pamphlet against playing with "face cards" years ago by Charles Weigle, the evangelist writer of "No One Ever Cared For Me Like Jesus." Weigle's thesis was that in the Middle Ages, the cards had meanings that made fun of Christianity: the queen was Mary, the Joker was supposed to be Jesus, etc. (I don't think I have the pamphlet anymore.) However, I've not been able to confirm this myself.


Another Fundamentalist who taught this was Wilfred Meloon, who wrote Hey! Young People! They Say I Am Crazy (SOTL, 1956). According to him, face cards were invented by the insane King Charles of France in 1392 (p. 15). He says that for 100's of years they were called "The Devil's Bible" and "The Devil's Picture Book," and quotes Presbyterian theologian T. DeWitt Talmage (1832-1902) as saying, "I would rather have my children play with a next of rattlesnakes than with a deck of cards!" So basically in the old days, all conservative Christians evidently opposed "face card" playing.

The usual Fundamentalist position is not that playing cards in and of itself is evil, but that playing with "face cards," even if you don't gamble with them, can cause others to stumble by making them think you, a mature Christian, are gambling and thus it is all right.

A funny story went the rounds when I was at BJU in '70-72. A student glanced in a room and saw some students playing Rook and was shocked, since he was brought up to believe that all cards were wrong. He rushed to Dean Liverman's office, and gained an audience with the stern dean of men. "Dr. Liverman, Dr. Liverman, I saw some students playing Rook in their room." Dr. Liverman looked pensive and said, "Well, the only one who ever beat me was Dr. Bob Sr.!"

At Rice family gatherings we often played Rook and enjoyed it, but we never played "face cards" in the family. Just don't tell Mom about that son of the lady she was trying to help, and how he taught me poker! (It was Mom who insisted that I play with him.)

Here is John R. Rice's position, which I scanned in from pp. 22-23 of Amusements for Christians, Right or Wrong? (SOTL, 1955).


"Playing Cards Without Gambling?”


“It is true that playing cards might in many cases be simply innocent squares of pasteboard. On the other hand, since regular playing cards are usually used for gambling, whether playing poker or bridge for money or playing bridge for prizes, it is likely that any young Christian who should see those cards in a person’s home would suppose that he gambled with them. And he would probably reason that if he played cards it would be all right for him to play bridge or poker. Or if he knew that gambling was wrong, it is nearly certain that he would think a person was condoning gambling, and his confidence in that person’s Christian life would be greatly shaken.

“There are two Scriptures that should be noted. The first is, ‘Abstain from all appearance of evil’ (I Thess. 5:22). The other is I Corinthians 10:23-33. It can be seen, then, that not all things which are lawful are expedient; that one must consider the consciences of weaker Christians as well as his own; that one must, whether he eats or drinks or whatever he does, do it to the glory of God, and that a Christian should be careful not to give offense “neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God.’ Each Christian must seek to profit others in such matters. I say with Paul, that, “if meat make my brother to offend, I will eat no flesh while the world standeth, lest I make my brother to offend” (I Cot. 8:13).

“It cannot be denied that regular playing cards are constantly connected with gambling, and one who is against gambling should not let anything leave the impression on others that he favors gambling.

“It would be wrong for me to have whisky bottles sitting in my house even if I never drank, and I would not be willing to have even empty whisky bottles left about so that any one could misunderstand my position. You see, one must consider not only himself but others in the matter.”

On other types of card games, Rice wrote on pp. 23-24:

“I do not believe that Rook is a gambling game. I never knew of anybody to gamble on it, so I could not in good conscience preach against it, Since the Bible says nothing to condemn it as far as I know, of course I cannot denounce it. As far as I know, it is innocent amusement. God has not put any curse on paper, or on cardboard, and God has not rebuked games. And since Rook does not encourage people to gamble, I think it might be used by Christian people if very careful not to offend, not to do harm. However, young Christians have sometimes wasted too much time on Rook games.

“When I was a boy we played Authors, a game played with cards, but of course it was never used for gambling. We also played Flinch, another game played with another kind of card. I never knew of anyone’s gambling on this, either.”
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