February is a busy month for everyone. Football fans, particularly the supporters of the Denver Broncos and the Carolina Panthers, have the Super Bowl 50 to look forward to. Meanwhile, fans of Kobe Bryant, Stephen Curry, LeBron James and Kevin Durant are undoubtedly excited to witness the 2016 NBA All-Star. Apart from these big sports events, however, one occasion unites everyone across the globe: Valentine's Day.
Otherwise known as the Feast of Saint Valentine or Saint Valentine's Day, the event is typically celebrated by lovers all over the world. Valentine's Day, which is commemorated every 14th of February, is often marked with flowers, chocolates, and romantic movies. Unknown to most people, however, is the fact that Valentine's Day is a liturgical celebration.
Although the story behind February 14 still begs for some questions, History.com clarified that the occasion has Christian and ancient Roman origins. One of the most famous stories regarding the tradition states that Valentine's Day was named after a priest who served the Roman empire during the third century. Valentine, who was then under the rule of Emperor Claudius II, put his life on the line for the sake of justice and love.
At the time, Emperor Claudius II deemed young unmarried men more capable of functioning as soldiers compared with those who have families and wives. In line with this belief, the emperor ordered that the young men will not be allowed to get married. Despite marriage being outlawed for these people, Valentine still opted to perform the sacrament for the forbidden lovers. However, he did so in secret. Eventually, the acts of Valentine were discovered, and he was put to death.
To better commemorate this Christian celebration, here are Bible passages on love and relationships. Couples and singles alike could reflect on these scriptures as the world celebrate Valentine's Day.
1. Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm, for love is strong as death, jealousy is fierce as the grave. Its flashes are flashes of fire, the very flame of the LORD. Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it. If a man offered for love all the wealth of his house, he would be utterly despised. Song of Solomon 8:6-7
2. And you husbands must love your wives with the same love Christ showed the church. He gave up his life for her. Ephesians 5:25
3. Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. Love does not demand its own way. Love is not irritable, and it keeps no record of when it has been wronged. It is never glad about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
4. You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax-collectors do the same? And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect. Matthew 5:43-48
5. Don't just pretend that you love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Stand on the side of the good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. Romans 12:9,10
6. Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. Romans 13:8
7. "Haven't you read the Scriptures?" Jesus replied. "They record that from the beginning 'God made them male and female.' And he said, 'This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.' Since they are no longer two but one, let no one separate them, for God has joined them together." Matthew 19:4-6
8. Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins. I Peter 4:8
9. As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father's commandments and abide in his love. These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. "This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. These things I command you, so that you will love one another. John 15:9-17
10. Two people can accomplish more than twice as much as one; they get a better return for their labor. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But people who are alone when they fall are in real trouble. And on a cold night, two under the same blanket can gain warmth from each other. But how can one be warm alone? Ecclesiastes 4:9-11