WCOG Article Index


x Unlocking The Scriptures 7th Seal of Revelations The Secrets of God The Rapture/Spring Harvest of Souls The Abomination Of desolation War China, Russia, Iran, North Korea war against the USA Just as the Days of Noah America Israel, And Great Britain In Prophecy The Mark Of The Beast The True Church Homosexuals There Is Nothing New Under The Sun
Answer To An Atheist Evolution Radiocarbon Dating A Fraud Can a Christian Believe in Evolution? Pre-Existence Before The Material Universe Does God Exist? 7 Proofs God Exists The Bible Superstition Or Authority Seven Keys To Understanding The Bible How To Study The Bible How To Understand The Bible How Do We Know We Have The Complete Bible Answers To Questions About Genesis Why There Seems To Be A Gap In The Bible How The Bible Counts A Generation The Bible Verses The Dead Sea Scrolls Should We Use The Old Testament The Hidden Knowledge How Religion Deceives You A World Held Captive The Ark And Noah Weeks Of Daniel The Exile In Stone

Volume I Volume II Volume III Volume IV Volume V Volume VI Genealogy And The Bible Family Tree God As King Who Really Discovered America Oldest Known 10 Commandments Were Found In America USA And Britain's Common Wealth In Prophecy Tea Tephi Britain's Coronation Chair And Jacob's Pillow Stone Jacob's Pillar Stone The Two Witnesses Russia In Prophecy The Middle East In Prophecy Who Are The Arabs Seeing The world Throgh Islamic Eyes The Race Question The Origin Of The Races Military Service And War Why Does God Allow Wars The Sure Way To End The Fear Of Nuclear War What Is Armageddon? There Is A Way To Escape Understanding The Way To Peace World Peace How It Will Come The key To Human Survival Petra The Safe Place Is There Life After Death World Peace And How It Will Come The Mark Of The Beast Mark Of God's People The Key to Revelations The Book Of Revelations Unveiled At Last Christian Symbols, The Fish, Cross, And Crucifix The Pagan Cross The Cross The Council Of Laodicea
Does God Exist 7 Proofs God Exist What About God Revealed Knowledge Why God Is Not Real To Most People Is God Fair How To Put God First God Was King God's Divorce Is Jesus God Should We Pray To God Or Only To Christ 70 Weeks Of Daniel Was Jesus Really Dead Why Christ Died If You Lived At Time Of Christ Would You Have Believed Him The Mystery Of MELCHIZEDEK Solved What Is Man How God Planned To Reproduce Himself What Led To The Creation Of Man What Is The Soul Why You Are Alive The Incredible Human Potential At Last Revealed Why Humans Were Put On Earth The only real value of a human life Bridging The Gap Between Human Mind And The Ultimate Spirit Composed Sons Of God What Science Can't Discover About The Human Mind Human nature - Did God create it? Human Nature And How A Whole World Is Deceived About It's Origin Why Were You Born You Were Born To Be King The Great Purpose Of Your Life Man To Rule The Universe Your Children - FUTURE GODS If You Were God How Would You Look At The World Today God's Invisible Agents Where Is Enoch And Elijah Lazarus And The Rich Man Can Men Actually Communicate With Departed Spirits? Life After Death Is There life After Death Did God Create A Devil Is There A Hell
God's Holy Days Or Pagan Holy Days List Of Holy Days How Often Should You Partake Of The Lord's Supper Should The Lord's Supper Be On The 14th Or 15th How To Observe The Passover In Your Own Home The Resurrection Was Not On Sunday Does Easter Really Commemorate The Resurrection Easter What Is The Purpose Of The Resurrection? The Plain Truth About Easter The Pentecost How To Figure The Pentecost The Sabbath A Perpetual Covenant Which Day Is The Sabbath Of The New Testament? Why Do You Observe Sunday Neglecting The Sabbath Christmas Should You Celebrate Birthdays Halloween New Years Eve Valentines Day
Is Tithing In Force Under The New Testament Should Christians Tithe Should You Pay Tithes The Man Who Couldn't Afford To Tithe Did You Ever Know Why Money Is The Root Of All Evil Does God Hate The Rich Has Time Been Lost God's 19 Year Cycle Calendar With Holy Days God's Calendar What is a Prophetic Year
The World's Oldest Surviving Inscription Of The Ten Commandments Found In America
Job, Joseph And His Brothers (Israel's Sons) Built The Great Pyramid
The Truth About The Free Masons
Sex God's Great Sex Law Abortion Makeup Are Homosexuals Born That Way Interracial Marriages Why Marriage Polygamy Divorce And Remarriage The Family Breakdown Child Rearing The family - God's Plan For Mankind Conspiracy Against The Family The Surprising Origin Of Modern Education
Pre-Existence Before The Material Universe Does God Heal The Plain Truth About Healing What is Faith What kind Of Faith Is Required Of Salvation Are We Back On Track When We Lost Faith How To Receive Answers To Your Prayers Have Christians Lost Their Power? The Plain Truth About Fasting The Importance Of Fasting Is all Animal Flesh Good Food What Fish And Fowl Are Good For Food The Key To Radiant Health 10 Simple Rules That Lead To Health Why Man Must Suffer
Christ's Gospel Was Suppressed - Not Heard From First Century Until Now! The Startling Revelation Of What Was Christ's Gospel What Is The True Gospel? The Gospel Jesus Taught The Gospel Is Education Choose All About Baptism Baptism By Fire What Do You Mean Born Again Are The Ten Commandments Necessary Were The Ten Commandments Nailed To The Cross Were The Ten Commandments In Force Before Moses The Ten Commandments What Is Salvation What Is The Reward Of The Saved What Do You Mean Reward For Your Works Just What Do You Mean Conversion What Is True Spirituality Conversion Sudden Experience Or Life Long Process False Conversion A Letter From Armstrong To The Newly Converted What Is A Liberal Is It Wrong To Be A Cultured Individual The Old And New Covenant Let God Fight Your Battles The Law, The Catholics, And You Do Christians Sin Education For Life Keep Your Eyes On The Goal How FAR May I Safely Go, In Doing What I Want But Know I Ought NOT? Christianity Is A Growth Process Are You Being Tested How You Can Overcome How To Prevent Sin What Is The Worst Sin How You Could Commit The Unpardonable Sin What Do You Mean The Unpardonable Sin Ending Your Financial Worries The Blessings Of Abundant Living How To Live Life Abundantly The Way Of Life That Causes Success The Seven Laws Of Success Should You Try To Change Others Should You Listen To Others We Must All Speak The Same The True Meaning Of Predestination Is Your Ultimate Fate Decided For You In Advance What Is Friendship What Is Emotional Maturity
Christ's Gospel Was Suppressed - Not Heard From First Century Until Now! The Startling Revelation Of What Was Christ's Gospel The Incredible Human Potential At Last Revealed Pre-Existence Before The Material Universe What Led To The Creation Of Man How God Planned To Reproduce Himself Bridging The Gap Between Human Mind And The Ultimate Spirit Composed Sons Of God Why Today's World Evils Why The Church Just What Do You Mean Conversion Human Nature And How A Whole World Is Deceived About It's Origin Is There Life After Death World Peace And How It Will Come
Jesus Is Coming Soon...Too Good To Be True What Is The Kingdom Of God What Will You Be Doing In The Next Life Looking Into The World Tomorrow Where Will The Millennium Be Spent

How The 7 Mysteries Were Revealed Who And What Is God Mystery Of Angels And Evil Spirits The Mystery Of Man Mystery Of Civilization Mystery Of Israel The Church The Kingdom Of God
Why The Church Fundamental Doctrines How And Why We Know We Have The Truth The Abomination That Maketh Desolate God's Temple Excepts The Mark Of The Beast Joseph Tkach Sales God's Church WCOG Changes Name WCOG vs. Philadelphia COG Court Records God's Church Is The Temple The True Church The History Of The Church Where Is The Original True Church Beginning History Of The Worldwide Church Of God The Real History Of The True Church Foundation, History, Authority, And Doctrine Of The Worldwide Church Of God Philadelphia Era Of The Church Just What Is The Church God's Church Does Not Compromise Worldly Churches Are Social Clubs The Tongues Question Tongues- Is The Pentecost Experience Being Repeated Today
Armstrong's Calling Armstrong's Conversion How Christ Educated His Apostle This Is The Life How I've Been Providentially Protected From Harm And Death No! I Was Never A Jehovah's Witness Or Seventh Day Adventist The Little Book The 19 Year Time Cycle The Need To Make The Truth Plain Must God's Ministers Be Ordained By The Hands Of Man? You Won't Believe It Armstrong's Final Sermon End Time Elijah Armstrong's Autobiography
Ambassador College Bible Correspondence Course
Ambassador News
Church Of God News
1981-1986 Teens Magazines
The Worldwide News
Youth Bible Lessons Level K-9
Combined Article Index Of The Plain Truths, Good News, And Tomorrow's World Magazines
The Plain Truths
The Good News
Tomorrow's World
Church Hymnal
HWA Video
HWA Audio

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WHAT IS the true origin of St. Valentine's Day? .... What significance lies behind the date of February 14th?.... What purpose is there in keeping it?

Have you ever wondered why it is called SAINT Valentine's Day? W h y do people become each other's valentine for this particular day? Why are cards decorated with hearts and figurines of small nude boys - cupids ?

The Bible - presumably the guidebook of all Christians - is silent about keeping such a day. Then how did we begin celebrating St. Valentine's Day? What is the source of our beliefs and practices ?

The First Valentine's Day

Centuries before the advent of Christianity, the pagan population of Rome observed a Valentine's Day (handed down from the EAST) beginning on the eve of February 14th - although under a different name. It was a love feast, based - not on any Christian principle of true love - but on free sex. The Romans were well noted for their sexual immorality on their festive occasions, especially so on this particular night in February. It was a religious festival dedicated to the goddess of love. The Romans called it their Lupercalia.

The superstitions associated with this Roman love festival were numerous. The priests, the Luperci, would clothe themselves with strips of skin from sacrificed goats and run through the streets in Rome. They bore whips in their hand, made of strips of goatskin; with these they struck women who ran in their way, desirous to escape from the reproach of barrenness. The thongs bore the name of febrza, a word connected.. . with purificatory ritual (Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, James Hastings, Vol. XII, p. 812).

Being one's valentine on this day was indulged in by all. It was about the middle of the month that the names of willing young ladies were put in a box and well shaken up, so that each young blood could draw out one at random; the girl thus won was to remain his companion while the gaieties lasted (The English Festivals, Whistler, p.90).

This festival was dedicated to the goddess Venus and the feast was characterized in the later Roman period by wanton raillery and unkindled freedom . . . (Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, James Hastings, Vol. 111, p. 226). In Roman mythology, this goddess of sexual immorality had sons, called Cupids, who attended her on this festival. They were believed to cause love and also make it cease - a sort of love potion (Roman Antiquities, Alexander Adam, p. 279). This was done by shooting arrows at the hearts of the victims. Cupid was generally represented as a winged boy with bow and arrow, often shooting at a young man's or a young woman's heart. These cupids were naked, winged, and blinded, armed with a bow, arrows, and a torch. Any resemblance to the little nude boys on Valentine's Day cards? The cupids are often used as decorative symbolism in theaters, cards, signs on inns, etc. Who was this Cupid? In later Roman times he was only one of many Roman gods. The Greeks knew him as Eros. But his history goes farther back than Greek or Roman times. In Egypt this infant divinity was frequently represented with a heart, or the heart-shaped fruit of the Persea, in one of his hands ( T h e T w o Babylons, Alexander Hislop, p. 189). Thus the boy-god came to be regarded as the god of the heart,' in other words, as Cupid, the god of love (ibid.).

First Christian Valentine

Seeing that the Roman love feast of Lupercalia was outright pagan, why then did the Christian-professing church accept and keep such a day - of course under a different name? Whatever possessed the leaders of the church to approve of this heathen fertility feast and keep it as a Christian festival under the name of St. Valentine's Day?

It all began at the time of Constantine the Great in the fourth century. It was this emperor who, it will be remembered, accepted orthodox Christianity.No longer considering himself a pagan, Constantine was encouraged to break with his pagan past. And one of several heathen feasts that had to go was the Lupercalia. But this produced problems.

It was one thing for the Christianized emperor to forego what the church considered a purely pagan festival, but to get the Roman populace at large to cease observing this love feast was another matter. In fact, it proved impossible. The Roman populace wouldn't hear of it.

It was hoped by church circles that the pagan populace would in due time be willing to give up this festival, but this proved to be a false hope.

The Christian-professing church then decided that the only way this matter could be resolved was to let the great masses of the empire - now members of the church - keep the Lupercalia feast, but by another name and for another purpose.

It was the year A.D. 496 when Pope Gelasius I Christianized the festival and renamed it St. Valentine's Day.

Here is why.

Church's Main Interest

Once the Roman emperors became Christians, the Orthodox church grew in numbers. Since her main concern was to convert the pagan populace within the empire as quickly as possible, she felt justified in making it easy on them.Church leaders clearly perceived that if Christianity was to conquer the world it could do so only by relaxing the too rigid principles of its Founder (Studies in the History of Oriental Religions, James Frazer, Book 11, p. 202).

One way of gaining an ever-increasing influx of members was to blend and incorporate pagan beliefs and practices with Christian ones. Thus at the first promulgation of Christianity to the Gentile nations. . . they could not be persuaded to relinquish many of their superstitions, which, rather than forego altogether, they chose to blend and incorporate with the new faith (Popular Antiquities of Great Britain, John Brand, p. xi).

Thus for almost every pagan ceremony, some Christian rite was introduced (Clavis Culendariu, John Brady, Vol. I, p. 196).

So, beginning with A.D. 496, the Roman populace could still come to their love feast, no longer dedicated to Venus, the goddess of love, but to the Virgin Mary. They could still draw lots for their valentines, but with the names of saints written on them. The attention of the populace on each February 14th was now to be centered on Christian saints instead of pagan deities.

St. Valentine Chosen

The church, in deciding to slightly alter the festival by giving it an acceptable name, went back to the third century. There she came upon a tradition about a certain presbyter who had married couples secretly against the edict of Emperor Claudius 11. He was caught and beheaded in A.D. 270. To honor this bishop, it was decided to call the February festival of love and purification after his name - Saint Valentine.

Later, the Protestant churches rejected the Catholic concept of the Virgin Mary and the saints' association with St. Valentine's Day. Instead, the people went back to drawing the names of ordinary young men and women. It became a less religious ceremony - but still retaining all the pagan embellishments of the Romans, and then some.

All the pagan trappings were maintained - Cupid was still there, the decorative hearts continued to be displayed, lots were still drawn as chance directed, and the day was still the original Roman day. It was also believed that birds were said to mate on this day. It was further a widely held tradition that the first person of the opposite sex one encountered on the morning of St. Valentine's Day was to become the future spouse. And love potions were considered to be very potent on February 14th. People would let themselves go at parties, often disregarding the inevitable consequences of such revelry.

Both in England and Scotland, St. Valentine's Day was a welcome diversion from the otherwise dull, cold winter season. Referring to a traveler to these areas in the last century, we read, On the eve of St. Valentine's Day,' he says the young folks in England and Scotland, by a very ancient custom, celebrate a little festival. An equal number of' maids and bachelors get together; each writes their true or some feigned name upon separate billets, which they roll up and draw by way of lots.. . .Fortune {the name of yet another pagan god!] having thus divided the company into so many couples, the valentines give balls and treats to their mistresses, wear their billets several days upon their bosoms or sleeves, and this little sport often ends in love' (Book of Days, Robert Chambers, Vol. I, part 1,p. 255).

No wonder that this heathen, lewd,superstitious custom of boys drawing the names of girls, in honour of their goddess (Clavis Calendaria, John Brady, p. 277) - as the Romans were wont to do - can easily lead to illicit love and dire consequences.

Why, then do we allow our children to keep a festival that is shrouded in superstition, founded on rank pagan ideals, and based on a corrupting rather than an uplifting influence?

There is certainly a need to keep festive occasions and religious celebrations. In fact, God Almighty commands His people to observe festivals - His festivals.

Notice, however, what God says about Christians keeping religious festivals which do not emanate from His Word - the Bible. You read of it in the book of Deuteronomy.

Here God warns His people Israel not to use pagan means and ways to worship Him. When the Lord thy God shall cut off the nations from before thee, whither thou goest to possess them, and thou succeedest them, and dwellest in their land; taRe heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, HOW did these nations serve their gods? Even so will I do likewise. Thou SHALT NOT
do so unto the Lord thy God (Deut. 12:29-31).

This warning is reiterated in Jeremiah 10, verses two to three. Here God commands, Learn not the way of the heathen. . . for the customs of the people are vain!

That is why God forbids keeping these pre-Christian festivals - they are vain, purposeless, and in the long run harmful. They blind as from the real purpose for mankinds existence. They prevent us from seeing God's Master Plan for His people.

It is not that God has left His people without meaningful festivals. On the contrary, instead of the traditional Christian festivals, which reveal very little if anything of God's Plan, Gods people keep the genuine festival days of God. These are full of meaning. By keeping them we understand the entirety of God's purpose for us. Once we understand them - and keep them - we would not want to retrogress to the holidays the world offers.

These Holy Days are fully explained here God's Holy Days or Pagan Holy Days

After reading about these Biblical Holy Days, days like St. Valentine's Day become utterly meaningless. And more iirnportant - God tells His people to observe the festivals He commands.

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Matthew 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.