As many of you know, today is Valentine's Day. What does that mean to you? I know some people celebrate it and some don't. What I'm wondering is, do you believe Christians should celebrate it? In order to answer this, let's look at the origin of Valentine's Day.
Emperor Constantine the Great legalized Christianity and ended Rome's persecution of Christians. In 380 A.D. Christianity is made the OFFICIAL state religion of the Roman Empire. This allowed the teachings of Christianity to spread and for non-christians to convert. The pagans, however, who adopted Christianity as their religion did not entirely abandon the traditions and practices they held before their "conversion."
A Pagan holiday known as Lupercalia (fertility celebration) was celebrated on February 15 and continued to be celebrated until (Catholic) Pope Gelasius , in 496 A.D., changed Lupercalia on February 15 to St. Valentine's Day on February 14 in honor of St. Valentine as the patron saint of lovers. It stayed on the Roman church's Calendar of Saints until 1969 A.D. The day was removed from the calendar by Pope Paul VI.
Does it matter? Does God care what holidays we celebrate?
Deuteronomy 12:29-31 - "When the Lord your God shall cut off the nations from before thee, the nations which you go to dispossess, and you displace them and dwell in their land, 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.' "
"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 . "
The warning is to not adopt CUSTOMS used to worship or honor other gods in order to serve and worship the true God. Valentine's day and its symbols are rooted in the worship of false gods and has no Biblical basis. So....should Christians who celebrate Valentine's Day and consider themselves believers in the God of the Bible take a prayerful look at no longer observing the holiday?
Here's what I think. Valentine's Day is a day where people express their love for others. I don't think there is anything wrong w/that. I've never considered it a religious holiday either. I also don't consider it something that has to be celebrated, so to each his/her own!!