Sunday, February 5, 2023

Happy Valentine’s Day

By Joe Slater


    Not even the Roman Catholic Church can decide with certainty which (if any) of three candidates is the real “Saint” Valentine. One popular view is that he was a “bishop” who kept on solemnizing marriages despite Roman emperor Claudius II supposedly banning marriage of soldiers in his army. This Valentine, so the story goes, was arrested and eventually martyred. Historical evidence is lacking; even referring to this as “legend” might be a stretch.

    More likely, “Saint Valentine’s Day” is yet another attempt to “Christianize” a pagan holiday. In this case, it’s the feast of Lupercalia, a fertility festival honoring Faunus, the Roman god of agriculture. It was celebrated on February 15. Our calendar puts Valentine’s Day on February 14. Oh well, close enough!

    As with Christmas, Easter, and Halloween, celebrating Valentine’s Day doesn’t make you a pagan. Go ahead, give your sweetheart a box of chocolates! When people’s minds are focused on the birth of Christ, it’s a great opportunity to teach the truth about it. Ditto with the Resurrection. So let’s use this holiday to teach the truth about marriage!

    In American Society Biblical marriage has fallen on hard times. “Currently, 60% of all marriages are preceded by cohabitation” ( Hebrews 13:4 says, “Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge.” Folks, we have much teaching to do! Let us have the backbone to reject political correctness, “speaking the truth in love” (Ephesians 4:15).

- Joe Slater serves as minister of the Church of Christ in Justin, TX. He may be contacted through the congregation's website:

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