Summary: A look at the classic Paschal’s Wager using Moses as the ultimate example.

Scene Setup: Will Turner is aboard The Flying Dutchman -- the ghostly vessel of Davy Jones -- on a mission to steal a key to a mysterious chest. The only problem is that he has no idea where to look. He comes upon some of the ship’s crew playing a dicing game.

Roll Pirates of the Caribbean Clip

Both father and son risked all, each for the other. That’s what you call a couple of high rollers.


The High Life—Part 3

A high roller, also referred to as a whale in the casino industry, is a gambler who wagers large amounts of money. Because of potential windfall these high sums can bring to the casinos, high rollers often receive increasingly lavish perks from casinos to lure them onto their gambling floors, such as free private jet transfers, limousine use and be allowed to stay in the casinos best suites.

Paschal’s Wager--Let us weigh the gain and the loss in wagering that God is. Let us estimate these two chances. If you gain, you gain all; if you lose, you lose nothing. Wager, then, without hesitation that He is. CS Lewis expounded on this idea. “If Christianity is true it is of infinite importance. If it is not true it is of no importance. The one thing it cannot be is moderately important.”

Introduce “The Ultimate Wager” $5

Hebrews is a collection of addresses that were apparently written to a group of Jewish Christians who had never seen or heard Jesus in person, but learned of him from some who had themselves listened to him. Since their conversion to Christianity they had encountered persecution—particularly at one stage shortly after becoming Christians—they had to endure public abuse, imprisonment, and the looting of their property. They had shown fruitful ministry by serving their fellow-Christians and caring for those who suffered most in the time of persecution. Yet their spiritual growth had stunted; instead of pressing ahead they had come to a full stop in their spiritual development, if not sliding backwards some. They were facing the unenviable choice of breaking ties with a religion that enjoyed the protection of Roman law or face the risks of irrevocable commitment to follow Christ. Hebrews was written to warn them against falling back. The writer encourages them with the assurance that they have everything to lose if they fall back, but everything to gain if they press on.

By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. [25] He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time. [26] He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward. Hebrews 11:24-26 (NIV)



chump change - a trifling sum of money

By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. Hebrews 11:24 (NIV)

Moses made the great refusal. Moses renounced the status enjoyed which he enjoyed in Egypt as a member of the royal household. He could not identify himself both with the Israelites and with the Egyptians; he had to refuse one or the other. To choose the slave-nation, with all the contempt and privation which that entailed, in preference to the substantial advantages and prospects which were his as “the son of Pharaoh’s daughter”, must have been an act of folly by all worldly standards. It is however, an act which has been repeatedly reproduced in our day by those who have preferred to cast their dice for another standard.

What chump change pleasure is God asking me to refuse right now?


He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time. Hebrews 11:25 (NIV)

Moses great refusal cost him greatly in material terms. His people were being ill-treated, but he chose to share their ill-treatment

The privileges and advantages attached to high rank and power are not sinful in themselves; they can be used very effectively to promote the well-being of others. Moses might have rationalized that he could do much more for the Israelites by remaining in the Pharaoh’s court and using his influence there on their behalf than by renouncing his Egyptian citizenship and becoming a member of a depressed group with no political rights. But for Moses to do this, after he had set his foot on the path of duty clear before him, would have been sin—the sin of apostasy, against which the letter of Hebrews was intended.

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