Resources for Adventist perspectives on Christmas

Bible, Church Manuals, SDA Encyclopedia

Bible

While the Bible talks about events, characters and circumstances known in the Christmas story, the word “Christmas” (as event, festival, celebration etc.) does not appear in the Scriptures. 

Church Manual

As in the Bible, there is no mention of the word “Christmas” in the Church Manual.

SDA Minister’s Handbook

As above, there is no mention of the word “Christmas” in the Minister’s Handbook.

SDA Encyclopedia

[article] CHRISTMAS. The Seventh-day Adventist Church does not follow the Christian, or church, year of festivals and fasts, and hence does not celebrate Christmas as an ecclesiastical festival. However, it is customary in some SDA congregations to have a special program or special music with a Nativity theme on the Sabbath that falls on or near December 25. SDAs have ignored Christmas as a church festival because of the absence of any divine command to observe the day. Furthermore, Christ’s birth date is unknown, and December 25 was chosen by the Roman churches late in the fourth century, to coincide with the “birthday of the sun,” the pagan solstice festival. On the other hand, SDAs have utilized the spirit of the Christmas season to direct people to the biblical teachings concerning Christ’s birth.

Ellen G. White

There are many resources (articles, chapters) written by Ellen G. White on the topic of Christmas. A quick search will prove that – https://text.egwwritings.org/search.php?lang=en&collection=2&section=all&QUERY=christmas&Search=Search

The main chapter on Christmas is to be found in the Adventist Home, chapter 77. https://text.egwwritings.org/publication.php?pubtype=Book&bookCode=AH&lang=en&collection=2&section=4&pagenumber=477&QUERY=christmas&resultId=2

From White Estate, we link to the main article about Ellen G. White statements related to the observance of Christmas and holiday gifts. The topics covered are very important: Christmas is Coming; To Glorify God, Not Man; The Day Not to Be Ignored With Children; Substitute Innocent Pleasures for Sinful Amusements; A Christmas Tree; Christmas Gifts; Turn the Current Heavenward; Holiday Gifts; Diverted From the True Object; The Reward of Self-Denial; The Holidays; Follow Christ’s Example; Offerings Consecrated to God; A Christmas Tree; A New Year’s Tree; Interesting Holidays; The Attractions of the Christian Life.

You can read it online here: http://www.whiteestate.org/issues/Christmas.html or here https://m.egwwritings.org/en/book/757/toc

Articles in Adventist Review

Articles

While you can find a full list of articles published in Adventist Review on the topic of Christmas, here is a list of the most recent articles: 

Archive

A collection of articles from Adventist Review archives that points us to the true reason for the season.

You can check the selection online here: https://advstrvw.securelytransact.com/article/286/archives/issue-2005-1550/christmas-with-a-purpose

One can easily find dozens of valuable articles on Christmas, searching in the archive of Adventist Review and looking for the issues published in December of previous years.

Adventist Review and EGW

Over the past few years, the Adventist Review has received several letters and e-mails from church members asking about the appropriateness of Christians celebrating Christmas. Adventist Review presents a selection of the Ellen G. White writings on Christmas that offers guidance and counsel on the topic. The document was compiled by the Biblical Research Institute, based at the General Conference.

You can read it online here: http://archives.adventistreview.org/article/889/archives/issue-2006-1535/ellen-g-white-christmas or here https://adventistbiblicalresearch.org/sites/default/files/pdf/Christmas.pdf

Diverse articles in other publications

Adventist World – various articles
https://www.adventistworld.org/?s=christmas

Adventist Record – Joy to the World
https://record.adventistchurch.com/2016/12/21/joy-to-the-world/

Elder’s Digest – sermon #4, A Right Way to Celebrate Christmas
http://documents.adventistarchives.org/Periodicals/ED/ED20091001-V15-04__D.pdf

Biblical Research Institute – Should Adventists Celebrate Christmas?
https://adventistbiblicalresearch.org/materials/practical-christian-living/should-adventists-celebrate-christmas

ANN – Is Christmas pagan, Christian or just convenient?
https://news.adventist.org/en/all-commentaries/commentary/go/-/is-christmas-pagan-christian-or-just-convenient/

Adventist Hymnals

In our SDA Hymnal we find many songs from #118 to #145, covering the birth of Jesus. Many of them come from the broad Christian tradition and are heard (if not exclusively only) during the Christmas time.

  • Silent Night, Holy Night (#143),
  • Angels We Have Heard on High (#142),
  • O Come, All Ye Faithful (#132),
  • In the Bleak Midwinter (#126),
  • Joy to the World (#125),
  • Hark! the Herald Angels Sing (#122),
  • The First Noel (#118).

Presidential Perspectives

Q: Pastor Wilson, I’m wondering if Seventh-day Adventists celebrate Christmas?

A: As a church, we don’t have an official statement or position about celebrating Christmas, leaving it instead to the individual.

We must be careful not to allow the subject of Christmas to become a divisive issue among us, criticizing or alienating those who may see it differently than we ourselves do.

You can read the article online here: http://perspectives.adventist.org/en/questions-answers/questions/go/2015-12-24/do-adventists-celebrate-christmas/

Diverse articles and sermons on the subject of Christmas

Biblical Perspectives (Bacchiocchi)The Meaning, Celebration and Date of Christmas
http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/endtimeissues/eti_218.pdf

Amazing Facts – Should we celebrate Christmas?
https://www.amazingfacts.org/news-and-features/af-blog/article/id/10955/t/should-we-celebrate-christmas

Various speakers
https://www.americanchristianministries.org/index.php/catalogsearch/result/?q=christmas

Various speakers
http://www.adventistpreaching.com/article/39/online-catalog/collection-of-holiday-sermons-a

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