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Championing Love

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But Peter and the apostles answered, "We must obey God rather than men. Acts 5:29

Some people write off Valentine’s Day (perhaps correctly) as a holiday manufactured by greeting card companies. That’s a far cry from its far less trite, far bloodier origins. Way before Hallmark entered the scene; Rome ruled the world through a series of rather unstable emperors. One of the more dangerous and sociopathic ones, Claudius II, outlawed engagements and marriage because he thought that men were falling to enlist in the army due to their strong connections with their wives and families.

In AD 278, a Christian priest named Valentine defied the emperor and began to perform secret weddings. When Claudius the Cruel fund out, he had Valentine arrested, beaten, and beheaded. Later, Pope Gelasius declared in AD 496 that February 14 would be celebrated as Saint Valentine’s Day, in honor of the martyred priest’s championing of love and obedience to God’s call.

You live in a time when honoring God by observing His guidelines for loves is increasingly unpopular. To commit to one woman for life takes a different degree of courage than it used to—though, done right, it’s never been a cakewalk. So, even if you’re staging a principled boycott from buying your sweetheart a card today, make sure she knows that you’re willing to lose your head for her.
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