Church of God, New World Ministries

Bible Q & A

Q. Where did St. Valentine’s Day come from? Should Christians allow their children to participate in Valentine’s Day activities? What should I tell our children about these customs?
A. Schools are supposed to educate our children. Yet how many were ever taught in school where the custom of Valentine’s Day originated?

Do you think that Jesus Christ celebrated it? Or the apostles? It is time we learned why children have been encouraged to celebrate this day when no such practice is ever so much as mentioned in the Bible!

Did you know that centuries before Christ, the pagan Romans celebrated February 15 and the evening of February 14 as an idolatrous festival in honor of Lupercus, the “hunter of wolves”? The Romans called the festival the “Lupercalia.” The custom of exchanging valentines and all the other traditions in honor of Lupercus the deified hero-hunter of Rome “have been handed down from the Roman festival of the Lupercalia, celebrated in the month of February. The names of young women were put into a box and drawn out by men as chance directed,” admits the Encyclopedia Americana, article, “St. Valentine’s Day.” In choosing their partner they would then spend time in sexual gratification.

When Constantine made Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire, there was some talk in church circles of discarding this pagan free-for-all. But the Roman citizens wouldn’t hear of it! They liked it and so it was agreed that the holiday would continue as it was, except for the more grossly sensual observances.

But how did this pagan festival acquire the name of “St. Valentine’s Day”? And why is the little, naked Cupid of the pagan Romans so often associated today with February 14? And why do little children and young people still cut out hearts and send them on a day in honor of Lupercus the hunter of wolves? Why have we supposed these pagan customs in honor of the false god are Christian?

But who was the original “St. Valentine? Valentine was a common Roman name. Roman parents often gave the name to their children in honor of the famous man who was first called Valentine in antiquity. That famous man was Lupercus, the hunter. But who was Lupercus? And, why should he have also borne the name Valentine among the heathen Romans?

The Greeks called Lupercus by the name “Pan” the Semites called Pan “Baal.” According to the Classical Dictionaries, Baal mentioned so often in the Bible was merely another name for Nimrod, “the mighty hunter” (Gen. 10:9). So the hunter Nimrod was the Lupercus or wolf hunter of the Romans. And St. Valentine’s Day was a day set aside by the pagans in his honor.

But why should Nimrod have been called “Valentine” by the Romans? Valentine comes from the Latin word Valentinus, a proper name derived from the word Valens, meaning “to be strong,” declares Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary. It means literally “strong powerful, mighty.” Could this refer to Nimrod, the grandson of Ham? Indeed, we read in the Bible that Nimrod was the “Mighty Hunter” (Gen. 10:9). It was a common proverb of ancient time that Nimrod was “the mighty hunter before the Lord.” Nimrod was their hero, their strong man their Valentine!

One translation of Genesis 10:11 implies the same fact: “Out of that land he (Nimrod) went forth being strong and built Nineveh.” The Hebrew word “Asshur,” usually found in this verse, means “to be strong,” to be as the Romans would say a Valentinus, a Valentine!

How plain that the original Valentine was Nimrod, the mighty hunter of wolves. Yet another of Nimrod’s names was “Santa,” meaning “Saint.” No wonder the Roman Lupercalia is called “St. Valentine’s Day.

But why do we associate hearts with a day in honor of Nimrod the Baal of the Phoenicians and Semites? The surprising answer is that the pagan Romans acquired the symbol of the heart from the Babylonians. In the Babylonian tongue the word for heart was “bal” (see Young’s or Strong’s Concordance). The heart bal was merely a symbol of Nimrod the Baal or Bel of the Babylonians!

Nimrod the original St. Valentine-- fled to Rome, according to ancient tradition, and was killed there for his crimes. Later the half-pagan Church in Constantine’s day made Nimrod the St. Valentine of the heathen a Saint of the Church-- and continued to honor him by calling him falsely a Christian martyr.

The Roman month February derives its name from the februa which the Roman priests used in the rites celebrated on St. Valentine’s Day. The februa were thongs from the skins of sacrificial animals used in rites of purification on the evening of February 14. Then how did “Cupid” come to be associated with this day?

Another name for the child Nimrod was “Cupid” meaning “desire” (Encyclopedia Britannica, art., “Cupid”). It is said that when Nimrod’s mother saw him, she lusted after him, she desired him. Nimrod became her Cupid her desired one and later her Valentine! So evil was Nimrod’s mother that it is said she married her own son!

Inscribed on Egyptian monuments of antiquity are pictures of Nimrod (the Egyptians called him Osiris), who was said to have been “the husband of his mother.”

It is about time we examined these foolish customs of the pagans now falsely labeled Christian. It is time we quit this Roman and Babylonian foolishness this idolatry and get back to the faith of Christ delivered once for all time. Let’s quit teaching our children these pagan customs in memory of Baal the sun-god the original St. Valentine-- and teach them instead what the Bible really says! “Learn not the way of the heathen (Jer. 10:2)”!
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