ST. VALENTINE'S DAY
Should Bible Believers Celebrate This Day?
When you walk into the stores around the beginning of February, the glare from the bright red, heart-shaped boxes of candies will almost blind you. On February 14th, millions of people, young and old alike, buy tons of candy and exchange millions of valentines. Men send women flowers for Valentine's Day, making February 14th, according to the florists, one of their best and busiest days. Young women buy evening gowns and young men rent tuxedos to appear desirable at the St. Valentine's Day dance, more commonly referred to now as the Sweetheart Dance.
Why does the world observe this day? Where did it originate? Do we find this practice recorded in our Bibles? How did Christianity and the world come to inherit these customs? Is Cupid any different than Santa Claus, the Easter bunny, or the tooth fairy? Let us see if we can trace these practices back to see what they really stand for and why they were originally celebrated.
The Encyclopedia Americana, on the subject of Valentine's Day, says that the custom of exchanging valentines and all other traditions associated with it "have been handed down from the Roman festival of the Lupercalia, celebrated on the 15th of February, when names of young women were put into a box and drawn out by men as chance directed."
When Constantine made Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire, multitudes of pagans called by the church to convert, flocked into the church, bringing with them their pagan customs. Can St. Valentine's Day be true worship? The answer is "no." As seen above, centuries before Christianity, the pagan Romans celebrated this holiday as an idolatrous festival in honor of Lupercus, the deified hero-hunter.
In the Encyclopedia of Religion, we find the following: "For a long time, the word was thought to have come from lupus ("wolf") and arceo ("to keep off") and so mean "protectors against wolves" (Servisu, Ad Aeneidem 8.343; Wissowa, 1912, p. 209). But Luperci is more a derivative of lupus with the ending ercus (analogous to the formation of noverca, 'mother-in-law') and so means "wolf-men." The Luperci, appearing naked, (Servius, Ad Aeneidem 8.663), or rather "nude except for a simple loincloth," (Plutarch, Romulus 21.7, Quaestiones Romanae 68), brought to mind a pre-civilized state and constituted a "truly savage brotherhood" (fera quaedam sodalitas: Cicero, Pro Caelio26)." The article went on to state that, as part of the ceremony, goats, either male or female, were sacrificed. The skins were then made into lashes, which the priest, naked as described above, carried into the crowds. "With these lashes, they would strike the spectators, especially women, 'in order to ensure their fertility' (Servius, Ad Aeneidem8.343). Ovid (Fasti 2.441) proposes a strange etiology for this rite: it would be the application (discovered by an "Etruscan augur") of an order from Juno, 'Let a sacred he-goat penetrate Italian mothers' ("Italidas matressacer hircusinito")."
If we look at the above description of this ceremony, we see several applications of false worship. One thing that stands out is the reference to wolves. It is wolves that are the enemies of the sheep, and Yahweh's people are symbolized in Scripture as the sheep of His pasture (Jeremiah 31:10). Whenever wolves are referred to in pagan worship, they should be seen as Satan's workers sent to scatter and devour the sheep (Matthew 7:15). Another reference is to the loincloth's covering of the nakedness which Adam and Eve were shown by Satan in the garden. It was not Yahweh's covering. There are many sects today, both in worship services and in secret ceremonies, using the loin-cloth covering. It is the way of the nations, established by Nimrod, and in opposition to Yahweh's true worship.
"Saint" or Sinner
At this point you may ask, "How did this festival get the name of St. Valentine's Day? What did St. Valentine have to do with it? What does the naked little Roman Cupid have to do with this celebration on February 14th?" In order to answer these questions, we are first going to have to go back in time and find out whom Saint Valentine depicts. Valentine was a very common Latin name and comes from a Latin word, Valentinus, a proper name derived from the word, valens, which means, "to be strong," (from Webster's Unabridged Dictionary). It means literally, strong, powerful and mighty. Roman parents often gave their children this name in honor of the first man who was called "Valentine" in ancient times.
As in any mystery, there are clues that lead to the source of the crime. In this case, the crime was and is to give worship to something or someone other than Yahweh. It is no secret that the Roman Empire promulgated the Babylonian system established by Nimrod, the "mighty hunter in opposition to Yahweh" (Genesis 10:9). As already established, Lupercus was known as the hero-hunter and was nothing more than an expression of Nimrod. So Lupercus, the mighty wolf-hunter of the Romans, is associated with Nimrod. Certain translations of Scripture (Genesis 10:11) imply this: "Out of the land he [Nimrod] went forth being strong and built Nineveh." The Hebrew word "asshur," usually used by most translations for Nineveh in this verse, means to be strong; as the Romans would say, to be a valentine.
Why are big, red hearts associated with the day Nimrod is honored as the mighty baal of the Phoenicians and Semites? The answer is really not much of a surprise. The Romans borrowed this symbol from the Babylonians. In Chaldee, the word for heart is "bel" (The Two Babylons, page 190). The heart (bel) was merely a symbol of Nimrod, the Baal or Bel of the Babylonians. Can you see how all of these paganistic concepts are intertwined? They are made up of local and even borrowed fairy tales (Two Babylons, pages 189-190).
There is still one question remaining: When did Cupid make his appearance? Another name for the child Nimrod was Cupid, which means "desire" Encyclopedia Britannica). Cupid, "the winged boy," was the son of Venus, and occupied the very same position as Nin, or Ninus: "As Nimrod was unquestionably the first of 'the mighty ones' after the flood, this statement of Aristophanes, that the boy-god Cupid, himself a winged one, produced all the birds or 'winged ones,' while occupying the very position of Nin or Ninus, 'the son,' shows that, in this respect also, Ninus and Nimrod are identified. Here we see Cupid identified as Nimrod in The Two Babylons, page 40. It was said that when Nimrod's mother saw him, she lusted after him and desired him. So evil was Nimrod's mother, that she married her own son. It was inscribed on Egyptian monuments that Nimrod, the one the Egyptians called Osiris, was the "husband of the mother" (The Two Babylons, page 22). So Nimrod, their mighty hunter, was also Valentine, their strong and mighty hero. No wonder the pagans commemorated their hero-hunter, Nimrod, or Baal, by sending to one another on February 14th, heart-shaped love tokens symbolizing him.
It is time to start exposing all these foolish, pagan customs and teach what the Bible says instead: "Come out of her, My People, that you be not partakers of her sins, and that you receive not of her plagues," (Revelation 18:4). As recorded in 2 Thessalonians 2:7, Paul knew that the mystery of iniquity was already at work. We, as true believers, must not be entangled in that mystery.