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Summary: We give and receive Valentine cards, flowers, candy and lots of love on this day, but we all need to stop and thank God Almighty for HIS Valentine give to us.

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A MAGNIFICENT VALENTINES GIFT

2-12-12 New Liberty Christian Church, Veedersburg, IN with Rich McQuinn, Minister

TEXT; JOHN 8:1-11

Do you remember the story behind the origins of Valentine’s Day? You know, it is called Valentine’s Day for a reason.

Approximately 250 years after Jesus was born in Bethlehem, there was a priest by the name of Valentine. He lived in Rome during the reign of Emperor Claudius, who was committed to rebuilding the once-great Roman army. However, he believed it was important for men to volunteer for armed service, rather than drafting men into service against their will. But, given a choice, most young men in the Roman Empire refused to serve. They’d rather stay at home with their wives and children that go off into battle.

Claudius came to believe that only single men would volunteer for service, so he issued a royal edict that banned all further marriages. He actually outlawed weddings in the Roman Empire, earning himself the nick-name Claudius the Cruel.

Valentine thought it was ridiculous! One of his favorite duties as a priest was to marry people. So after Emperor Claudius passed his law, Valentine secretly continued performing marriage ceremonies. He would whisper the words of the ceremony, while listening for soldiers on the steps outside.

One night, Valentine did hear footsteps at his door. The couple he was marrying escaped, but he was caught. He was thrown in jail and sentenced to death. Valentine tried to stay cheerful. Many of the young couples he had married came to visit him in jail. They threw flowers and notes up to his window. They wanted him to know that they, too, believed in love.

One day, he received a visit from the daughter of one of the prison guards. Her father allowed her to visit him in his cell and they often sat and talked for hours. She believed he did the right thing by ignoring the Emperor and performing weddings. On the day Valentine was to die, he left her a note thanking her for her friendship and loyalty. He signed it, “Love from your Valentine.” That note started the custom of exchanging love notes on Valentine’s Day. It was written on the day he died, February 14, 269 A.D.—a day that was set aside in honor of a man who gave his life for God and for love.

Now, every year on this day, people remember Saint Valentine, but most importantly, they think about love.

Everyone loves love! We want to be loved and we want to give love. The problem is—our love is lacking just like we are. It’s often conditional upon our own mood or our loved one’s actions, appearance or attitude. When it comes to love, all of us fall a little short, don’t we? Some of us are as confused about love as little five-year-old Kari who told her teacher, “Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving cologne and they go out and smell each other.”

Please raise your Bibles high this morning so that I have seen that you have come to drink in God’s Word for today.

I could have chosen many texts for us to study this morning. Text like John 3:16….For God So Loved the World that He gave His only begotten Son, that Who ever believes in Him should not perish but have every lasting Life.

I could have chosen I John 4:7-8….Beloved let us love one another, for love is of God and He who loves is born of God, He who does not love, does not know God for God is Love.

I could have chosen several verses from Song of Solomon, where the husband writes about how much he loves his wife. He writes about her breast, his delight in her, he calls her darling and can not wait until they are in their wedding bed together. You want something HOT to read, take your time and read your Bible.

I did choose for your wisdom this text from John chapter 8, verses 1-11.

1 but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives.

2 At dawn he appeared again in the temple courts, where all the people gathered around him, and he sat down to teach them. 3 The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group 4 and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5 In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” 6 They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him.

But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. 7 When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” 8 Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.

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