What Does the Bible Say About Valentine’s Day?

Summary

If you are a Christian, chances are you have already planned or currently planning how you will celebrate Valentine’s Day this February 14. But do you know that true Christians do not celebrate Valentine’s Day? The reason might shock you.

A Brief History of Valentine’s Day:

The Romans had an ancient pagan festival called Lupercalia held every year in Rome between February 13 and 15 and dates back to the 6th century B.C. Lupercalia was a bloody feast where animal sacrifices, immoral activities, nakedness, partying, and uncontrolled sex were done. Men also randomly choose their mate by picking the name of the girl from a jar. The couple will be paired for the entire duration of the feast.

From Lupercalia to Valentine’s Day

It was Pope Gelasius I in the 5th century AD who abolished Lupercalia and replaced it with Valentine’s Day in honor of St. Valentine and as a celebration of his martyrdom. He declared February 14 as St. Valentine’s Day. But despite the efforts to Christianize Lupercalia, the symbols used and some activities on Valentine’s Day are still connected to the ancient pagan festival.

What the Bible Says About Paganism

Deuteronomy 12:29-32 “When the Lord your God cuts off from before you the nations which you go to dispossess, and you displace them and dwell in their land, 30 take heed to yourself that you are not ensnared to follow them, after they are destroyed from before you, and that you do not inquire after their gods, saying, ‘How did these nations serve their gods? I also will do likewise.’ 31 You shall not worship the Lord your God in that way; for every abomination to the Lord which He hates they have done to their gods; for they burn even their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods. 32 “Whatever I command you, be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it.

The Bible is plain. Any festival that is rooted in paganism is prohibited. Valentine’s Day is one of them.

What’s Wrong With Showing Love?

Love is more than just giving chocolates, cards, and jewelry. The Bible talks about the godly love that shows selfless concern for the welfare of others, as opposed to the erotic love by which many people are drawn to on Valentine’s Day. It’s not a one-day event that you just remember in February.

Romans 13:8,10 Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law. Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.

Conclusion:

The Bible condemns the celebration of Valentine’s Day because it is rooted in paganism. The Bible promotes the highest form of love which is a daily act of showing care and concern for the welfare of other people.

Knowing this truth about Valentine’s Day, you are now left with a choice. I hope you will make the right one. 

Full Transcript

Valentine’s Day is one of the most popular holidays in the whole world next to Christmas. It has commercial significance, cultural significance but it also has religious significance, because this day is recognized as a Christian holiday. If you are a Christian, chances are you have already planned or you are currently planning how you're going to celebrate this day on February 14.

But do you know that true Christians don't celebrate Valentine’s Day? Yes, you heard me right! True Christians are not supposed to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Christ did not teach it, the disciples did not observe it, and the people of God are not commanded anywhere in the Scriptures to observe and celebrate Valentine's Day. What then is wrong with this day? Why true Christians are not celebrating this day?

To understand the reason, we need to go back to the origin of Valentine's day.

I'd like to tell you a brief history of Valentine’s Day.

The Romans had a pagan festival called Lupercalia. This was held every February 13 and 15 in Rome and it dates back to the 6th century B.C.

As a fertility rite, Lupercalia was a bloody feast and it's tainted with orgies and sexual themes. The festival began with a sacrifice of one or more goats and a dog by priests, now they call the priest as Luperci. After killing the animal sacrifice, the Luperci were led to the altar and have their foreheads touched with the bloody knife. After which their foreheads were wiped with wool dipped in milk. And by the way, they were required to laugh all throughout the ritual. Now, after this, they were asked to cut strips or thongs of skin from the animal sacrifice and they would run around the place naked or nearly-naked, whipping any woman who came near with the strips of skin they cut from the animal. The whipping was a fertility rite and women who were whipped were believed to become fertile. So, women would gladly welcome the lashes and they would even strip their clothes and bare their skin just to receive the whipping.

Another significant part of this festival is the random choosing of a mate. The man would randomly pick the name of a woman from a jar or a hat. They are then paired throughout the duration of the festival. Some of these pairs would stay for a short time, some would stay longer until the next festival, and the others would fall in love and get married.

Now you might wonder how Lupercalia became a Christian festival. It was Pope Gelasius I in the 5th century AD that abolished Lupercalia and replaced it with St. Valentine’s Day in celebration of the martyrdom of a certain priest named Valentine. According to popular legend, St. Valentine was imprisoned and beheaded on February 14 after defying the orders a certain Emperor named Claudius II by performing marriages secretly with young couples. When he was discovered he was dragged to jail and tortured.

Despite the effort to Christianize Lupercalia, the symbols on Valentine’s day remained similar to the symbols in Lupercalia. For example, the colors red and white, now this represents the blood in Lupercalia in the animal sacrifices and the white represents the milk that was used to wipe the foreheads of the priests. That's the symbol of the new life, procreation and fertility, and so on. Not to mention the uncontrolled sexual activities and attractions during these days.

The Bible warns against anything pagan. Where do we find this in the scriptures? Let's go to Deuteronomy 12:29-32. Let me read it for you:

Deuteronomy 12:29-32 “When the Lord your God cuts off from before you the nations which you go to dispossess, and you displace them and dwell in their land, 30 take heed to yourself that you are not ensnared to follow them, after they are destroyed from before you, and that you do not inquire after their gods, saying, ‘How did these nations serve their gods? I also will do likewise.’ 31 You shall not worship the Lord your God in that way; for every abomination to the Lord which He hates they have done to their gods; for they burn even their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods. 32 “Whatever I command you, be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it.

The Bible is plain. Any festival that is rooted in paganism is prohibited. Valentine’s Day is one of them.

But you might argue: What is wrong with giving chocolates and flowers and cards and jewelry to your wife on Valentine's Day? What’s wrong with telling a girl that you love her? What’s wrong with taking your loved one to a special dinner? What's wrong with all these things? Isn't it that love is found in the scriptures and it has been taught in the scriptures?

Well, yes. The Bible talks about love. But it's the highest form of love the Bible calls "agape" or godly love. This is not the same as the erotic love that is being promoted on Valentine's Day. Godly love is higher than that.

And by the way, godly love and romance are more than just whispering nice words and giving chocolates, and cards, flowers, and jewelry. It’s about serving and helping others. It’s about the husband taking care of the wife and providing for her, loving her and helping her in the chores, waking up early in the morning when she is not feeling well to make breakfast. It’s about taking the garbage out, changing the baby’s diapers. All these things are about serving and helping other people. It’s also about the wife respecting and submitting to the husband. It’s about making his favorite food and the husband also buying her favorite desserts and all these things. Helping together and showing love for each other. By the way, even Christ talks about loving your enemies. Now, this is something we cannot find on Valentine's Day. Love is an on-going thing. It’s a daily thing. It’s not just a one-day event that we remember in February. It’s something that we do for others day in and day out. It does not stop. It continues to grow every single day. It should grow every single day. That is what love is in the scriptures.

The Bible in Romans 13 tells us that we “owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.” Then Paul goes on talking about the commandments against stealing, committing adultery, murdering, bearing false witness. In other words, true love does no harm to others. This is what godly love is all about.

In conclusion, Valentine’s Day is wrong because it's rooted in paganism. And all the things associated with it, the symbols, the colors, the activities, it could all be traced back to pagan rituals and activities that the Bible condemns. God is clear. The people of God are not to take part in anything that has to do with paganism. That's the very reason why true Christians don't celebrate Valentine's Day.

Knowing this truth, you are now left with a choice. I hope that you will make the right one. I am Reuel Campos and see you again in another biblical teaching here at Biblical Truths.

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