I find two ironies related to lotteries.
First; it seems to me that distrust and envy of the rich is on the increase in the US. Yet it seems many are thronging to become rich through vehicles such as the lottery. To me, this reinforces that the class envy that some have provided catalyst to is only toward the rich that do not share the worldview they are trying to impart to the masses. I think it ironic that I have never read anyone trying to make political-hay speaking ill of the rich in sports, arts, entertainment, etc... It seems that the evil rich are limited to financiers and businessmen. Interesting.
The second irony is that lotteries are bad for the poor. Ed Stetzer quotes a Carnegie Melon study and Barack Obama on the point. I agree. So why in a culture screaming for more government care of the poor are we supporting government run lotteries? I don't think it's because we don't care about the poor. I think it reinforces our flawed thinking that we all should do better and it is the role of the government to ensure this. And deep down, people think money and stuff from the government is free. Which I guess it somewhat is since we aren't planning to pay back the loan.
And finally, not an irony, but rather some points of reason for the Christian to consider, John Piper writes a short piece on why we should not gamble our money in this way.