Is Investing In The Stock Market A Form of Gambling?
The common factor that the stock market and gambling have together is risk. Yet risk, in and of itself, does not constitute gambling. How do we know this?
If risk was the only sufficient factor, then a farmer could never plant crops because he is taking a risk that the weather will always be suitable for the growth of his crops. A person could never buy insurance for his house or car because he is taking the risk that in the future his house and car might be destroyed by some disaster and the insurance will be able to cover that disaster.
Whenever you invest in the stock market, you are taking a risk that the company will be successful rather than a failure. Both the company and you will lose money if the company does not perform well. The principle of investing in risky things is found in the parable of the talents (Matthew 25:14-30). Thayer's define a "talent" as "a sum of money weighing a talent and varying in different states and according to the changes in the laws regulating the currency." Usually the more risk one takes the greater the risk of loss or reward. The five- and two-talent servants doubled their investment. Gambling is different from investing because gambling violates the heart of the golden rule in Matthew 7:12: "Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets." Gambling involves someone winning at the expense of someone else losing.
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