Daily Devotional for Saturday September 14, 2013
The Lie of Las Vegas
(Numbers 32:23; Proverbs 26:26; Ecclesiastes 12:14; Luke 12:2; 1 Corinthians 4:5)
***ASK BILL: Pastor Bill, what's your take on Sid Roth? I understand he is a Jew and lately has been telling Christians not to forget the Jews in Israel who are Christians, and also to pray for those who are not Christians.
ANSWER: Sid is a Messianic Jew who has been serving the Lord faithfully for decades. For the record, a dear husband and wife who discipled me during the first days of my minsitry 20 years ago, introduced me to Sid. Sid gave my ministry the first $1,000 gift at a time when we were just starting in 1992. I have gotten to know him well, and he has a passion for souls. He was a big influence over the Jews for Jesus movement in the 70s and 80s. From his Jewish roots he knows the miracle working power of God, and has focused on that in his long running radio program Messianic Minute and current TV program. He is the real deal with a pure heart who I have watched faithfully serve the Lord during my 20 yrs in ministry.
The city of Las Vegas adopted a multi-million dollar national ad campaign designed to go back to its adults-only roots. For many years known as "sin city," Las Vegas spent the 90's trying to market itself as a family-friendly vacation paradise. As we moved into the new millennium, they decided to go back to their adults-only roots. The slogan of their new ad campaign, "What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas," is a deceptive lie straight from the pits of hell itself!
Las Vegas in the year 2013 is a far different place than what mobster "Bugsy" Siegel envisioned in the mid 40's when he built the Flamingo. By the late 80's, the organized crime influence over Las Vegas was replaced by the corporate gaming giants that now control the billions of dollars flowing into Las Vegas each year. To support the ever growing gaming industry, Las Vegas has actually become one of the fastest growing areas of the nation. Outside of the strip you have a vibrant, active community made up of people no different than in any other town you might visit.
However, the only reason Las Vegas exists is simple, sin. What drives the Las Vegas economy and the only reason it exists is gambling. I have done entire Devotionals in the past on why gambling is a sin. It is a horrible use of the resources God entrusts to us, it is putting your faith in "luck" or "chance" instead of in God, it promotes greed, and it is a horrible witness to the lost in the world who we are supposed to be witnessing to. While there is no verse in the Bible that says, "thou shalt not gamble," it is clearly a sin for the above reasons and is not something a follower of Christ should be involved in.
The problem with sin is once you open the door and allow it into your life, you end up becoming involved in many different types of sins. Gambling is not the only sin associated with Las Vegas. You also have drunkenness, every type of sexual sin imaginable, they have made a mockery of God's Holy Institution of Marriage, in addition to a plethora of other sins that truly earn Las Vegas the moniker, "sin city."
Let me explain why their new marketing slogan is a lie from the pits of hell itself. The message it is sending to adults is that you can come to Las Vegas, do whatever you want, and nobody will ever know about it. For people already pre-disposed to sin, this is like a special invitation to come and sin and nobody will ever know about it. Here is why this is a lie straight from the lips of satan, the father of lies himself (John 8:44)....GOD WILL KNOW!!!
My friend, there is NOTHING you do that God does not see. You may be able to do things in secret that no other man will ever know about, but God knows. If you think that you can go to Las Vegas or down the street and do things in secret that nobody will ever know about, you have bought satan's lie hook, line, and sinker. Never forget, you don't sin in a vacuum. There are ALWAYS consequences for sin. Satan conveniently forgot to tell you that there was a price for your sin. SIN IS NEVER FREE AND ALWAYS ENDS UP COSTING MORE THAN YOU EVER WANTED TO PAY!!!
I love you and care about you so much. I will be praying for you today to recognize that satan will always try to entice you to sin. He is the great justifier. He will always help you come up with excuses to sin and make sinning as convenient as possible. He is great at opening the door to sin, making it look so wonderful if you will only come inside. If you need a little push, he will even give you a great lie like "don't worry, nobody will ever know." Sadly, once you walk through the door and into sin, that door slams shut. You can't go back and act like you were never there. On top of that, there will be consequences from your sin.
That is why you must stay connected to the Lord each day through prayer and the Word. You need to be an active member of a local church where you can be fed spiritually and find fellowship with other believers. You need to find ways to serve the Lord with your life. All of these are ways to stay in that daily, intimate fellowship with Christ that gives us the strength to not fall into satan's traps, helps us to flee from sin instead of running to it, and keeps us focused on the Lord. He loves you so much and has a wonderful plan and purpose for your life if you will only faithfully serve and follow Him each day.
The lie says, "What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas." The truth says, "There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known." Luke 12:2
In His love and service, Your friend and brother in Christ,