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Should we as christians go to the movies?

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Since Ellen White went to the Theater Houses ... I suppose it would be good for us to also.
4 Him,

Ellen White did not contradict herself about theater-going.

She never went to a theater except to preach the gospel.

"Christians would not wish to be at the theatre when Christ comes...God's blessings would not be invoked on hour spent at the theater
" AH 516; MYP 398

"The theater is a hotbed of immorality...only safe course is to shun it" 4T 453

"Vicious habit of siful propensities are strengthened by the theater" "

"Youth are educated in crime by the theater" 3T 471
Yes Jim. I agree with you. Not sure where the idea that she contradicted herself came from. I certainly never indicated that. Like Trench said ... it is the content not the venue that is the concern. EGW went to the Theater to hear good things ... not bad.
You can. There's nothing in the Bible that forbids watching a play, and they had those back then. The word "hypocrite" means actor. We find the Greek word "theatron", which means theater, 3 times in the NT:

From G2300; a place for public show (“theatre”), that is, general audience room; by implication a show itself (figuratively): - spectacle, theatre.

Acts 19:29 ...they rushed with one accord into the theatre.

Acts 19:31 ...that he would not adventure himself into the theatre.

1 Cor. 4:9 ...for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men.

So, they had theater, and they had actors, but they didn't say it was bad. Like Trent said, it's just a medium. It can be used for good or evil. Even if you read a book, you create the scenes in your own imagination, where you watch a little play that you have created. The movie or theatre just does the imagination part for you. If it's done well, it's not going to be all the over-acting, and all the drama that you see in old movies. Art is supposed to imitate life. And in real life, people are not that dramatic. It really is kinda sickening. That's probably what Ellen White was on about. All the ridiculous drama.

We are admonished to make wise use of our time. Most of the things Hollywood produces is rubbish, and just worthless. But the people in the world, who do not know the Lord, are fascinated with it.

I have benefited by movies that give insight into historical events. The non-fiction type movies. I saw a movie called Gandhi, which gave me some basic info on Gandhi. When I was younger, I saw one about King David, and another about Joseph. These movies changed my life, and as a result, I decided to start taking the Bible seriously.

And of course it depends on what you're into. If you have a career in 3D special effects, then you might benefit from watching movies with really good special effects. You would be able to use those ideas. I think the Adventist people will have to make use of these technologies, before the Lord comes, to portray the plan of salvation as we understand it. I have yet to hear of a movie that does this. I would probably take a series.

I forced myself to watch the "Left Behind" series, to get a basic idea of what that doctrine teaches. I guess I better not comment about how absurd that was.
Here's that one I saw about Gandhi

You can download it. Just use this link:

And paste it in the box at
.flv format will play on VLC, found at
The movies that are generally available for consumption in the west are mostly produced in Hollywood. What are the values of those producers, directors, investors, etc? What agenda (s) are they promoting? Are they making movies for Christian entertainment or are they appealing to the baser human nature for the purpose(s) of fame and/or fortune?
It may be argued that there are movies with good themes and clean content, ever so often. This is irrefutable. the collateral damage inflicted by the trailers alone probably offsets the positive values inherent in these movies, though.
What about our Christian witness? Will the people observing us going to the movies be discreet enough to ascertain that the movies that we view are of a particular quality (category) or will they simply say that it is all right to go to the movies (irrespective of what they go to see) because bro/sis ? goes?
Obviously the Bible was written long before the first movie ever ran. There are, however, principles to guide us in our choice of entertainment. Paul argued passionately regarding the eating of meat (which he admitted was ok to consume vs14;) in his letter to the Romans (Ch14). He went on to counsel (vs 21), "It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor anything whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak."
We are counseled by the wise Solomon, "Keep thy heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life" Pro 4:23 Paul concurs in his letter to the Phillipians by listing six (6) characteristics that 'we must always judge our movies by' if they are to be considered virtuous and praise generating, "Finally my brethren, whatsoever things are true...honest...just...pure...lovely...good report... think on these things". Upward of 90% of movies do not qualify.
EGW is dogmatic, to say the least, regarding the theatre, the cinema's precursor and contemporary.
1."Christians would not wish to be at the theatre when Christ comes...God's blessings would not be invoked on hour spent at the theater
" AH 516; MYP 398
2."The theater is a hotbed of immorality...only safe course is to shun it" 4T 453
3."Vicious habit of siful propensities are strengthened by the theater" "
4."Youth are educated in crime by the theater" 3T 471
I take a very conservative position on this matter, knowing full well that most of the 'stars' are under the control of the Prince of darkness, to whom they have very conscious sold their souls
Bro. Samuel thanks for such wonderful words and quotations.
True. For the most part, anyway. Theater in the sense of entertainment. It's rubbish. But the same medium can also be used to educate. People watch TV for entertainment, and they also get 3abn. People read fiction novels, but they also read EGW. People entertain themselves on the internet, but they also watch the prophecy seminars on and other such sites.

Just because the Devil uses a medium, doesn't mean God can't use that same medium.

Do you think the Adventist people will use every medium to get the message out, except movies? That's the case so far, but will it always be?

Have you seen the Left Behind series? It's ridiculous. We could make a series like that, but it would be the truth, and not fables. And people would love it. It would be bigger than Star Wars.

And I remember another great movie that changed my life. It was about John Huss. That really gave me inspiration. It was at, but that site is down.

Notice also that Ellen White never says we can't make movies that will teach the Gospel message, and will depict these important events in history. Perhaps they didn't have such an idea then. And perhaps if they did, it was so over-acted it was just terrible. I've seen that, too.

The problem with theater is it's completely under the control of the Devil. But that doesn't mean God's people can't make a good production. And if brethren feel burdened to give it a try, they should. What if it's from the Lord?
Amen Brother! The sad thing about these days is that these same movies that show all kinds of sin are now being watched in the home. This is even a worse sin because our home is to be a little sanctuary and it is being defiled with these things. May we wake up to understand what this really involves. "Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life." Prov. 4: 23.
Generally speaking, sure. We need to take this into context. Ellen spoke in the theaters, as many evangelists did.

Twice I spoke in the theater, to attentive audiences. {RH, May 30, 1893 par. 2}

And she said "Christians would not wish to be at the theatre when Christ comes"

So, does that mean that if Christ came while they where in the theater listening to her speak, they would have been lost?

That's ridiculous. You know what she means. She means the general, worldly use of the theater, to just entertain, and to promote the Devil's agendas.

And when she made these statements in the 1800s, I don't think they had motion pictures. She would have been talking about live plays, like the play where Lincoln was assassinated.

We still have evangelists that speak in theaters, or stadiums, and we have nice video presentations that you can watch. Final Events is a good little presentation, with a lot of special effects and dramatizations.

And if you watch the movies about Martin Luther, John Hus, William Tyndale, King David, Joseph, and other historical figures, do you see sin glorified? Or do you learn something?

Can you please give a sound, and thoughtful answer?
Of course we should go to movies. And see movies in our home and church. I am not sure where the question is leading to. It sure seems obvious.
Another over-simplistic answer?


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