The Creation Days and the Beast Heads as Image of the Whole of Salvation History

Summary

This article reexamines ancient metaphors with the now deeper understanding of history from fully approved Private Revelations and so offers a new solution to such metaphors that would not work in the original form.

A rather sensible partitioning of the greater phases of God’s Plan for human history follow sacramental theology and Catholic spirituality:

This brings out eight greater phases of human history, each with two parts, darkness and light, from spiritual standpoint, for 16 total parts. Similarly, there are eight days of creation, six for labor, seventh for imperfect rest, and eighth for resurrection and eternity. Similarly, in Apocalypse 17, the beast has seven heads, which are delineated as kings, ulimately a total of eight per the text. The correlation between the greater theological ages of God's Plan and these symbolic entities in creaiton and beast will be made.

Regarding the theology of the phases of history, he OT has five ages, the New, three. However, they are not disjointed. The OT can be seen as two ages of the fall digested by nearly all of humanity, each according to the two great anti-sacramental principles of the Fall, followed the Jews traversing the three step Way of the Saint: a purgative phase, and illuminative phase, and a unitive phase. The NT follows suit: The Church and Gentiles similarly walk the three step path. Then human history ends.

To recap, the OT is 2 (two lies of fall digested) + 3 (Apocalyptic Way of Holiness of Jews). The NT, 3 (Apocalyptic Way of Holiness of the Church).

St Methodius of Olympus, in developing the days of creation analogy, says:

"Five are the ages of the Old Law, the sixth is designated to the Church, where she labors against heretics and the wicked, the seventh is the Millennium of rest, and the eigth is eternity."

Similarly, the Apocalypse, Chapter 17, on the beast:

"The seven heads are seven mountains, upon which the woman sitteth, and they are seven kings: Five are fallen, one is, and the other is not yet come: and when he is come, he must remain a short time. And the beast which was, and is not: the same also is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into destruction."

The correlations follow from there.


The Creation Days and the Beast Heads as Image of Whole Salvation History

A Word about Dispensationalist Theology

Before we progress, we need a word about Dispensationalism. Now, Several ECFs see the days of creation as a metaphor for the ages of the recreation of man, or his redemption. Now, St Methodius of Olympus, like Augustine, says five ages are of the old law. However, he goes on to elaborate on the New: The sixth is designated to the church, in which she labors to work against heretics. The seventh is the "Millennium of rest", and the eighth is the eternal New Creation, not the seventh.

Now, this "millennium of rest" that St Methodius references is a source of contention that we must address for this analogy that is forthcoming.

It references a passage from Apocalypse chapter 20. More specifically, starting in Apocalypse chapter 12, the dragon appears from many scenes of apocalypse, here and there, culminating with a beast and false prophet At the peak, this diabolical trinity, as it were, seduces man into self destruction, at which time, in Apocalypse 19, Christ "descends from heaven", and the beast and false prophet are cast into the fire, while the dragon is not yet totally vanquished but temporarily "chained in the abyss" for "a thousand years". During this period, Christ "reigns" on earth with resurrected saints. After the "thousand year period", the dragon is let loose for a final assault on the good, along with the resurrection of evil people. And then in the midst of this final attack, the dragon and evil persons are thrown into fire and evil is utterly vanquished. Then, we see the general judgement and New Creation.

Obviously, this is problematic for an orthodox Christian: per the Creed, Christ's Second Coming represents the definitive end of human history (from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead). It is then that BOTH the just and unjust rise and ALL to the general judgement and eternal recompense. It is then that the elements are destroyed and remade in the New Creation. We cannot split up the resurrection of men into first the just, and then, after some temporal period of time, the unjust. Christ cannot yet again enter human history within human history. Christ's return is the end of time. It divides history from eternity.

Hence, when the Church sat down to form the NT Canon in the early fifth century, though the West was fairly certain that St John indeed wrote the Apocalypse, this passage was called into question.

Luckily, our beloved Doctor, St Augustine, rendered a way to look at it symbolically that enabled the book to enter the canon.

Here, in this interpretation, the Millennium symbolizes the entire Church age, from coming to coming. Christ reigns spiritually through the baptized who are in new life and the martyrs in heaven. At the end of this general period of evangelization, the release of the devil symbolizes the final assault on the Church with the great apostasy and persecution. Then Christ will come again literally.

Hence, the Fundamentalist position, common to dispensationalism, which takes the Apocalypse 20 literally, also known by them as premillennialism, or Christ returning "before" the "Millennium", is condemned by the Church for the aforementioned reasons just above.

For this reason, at least at first glance, St Methodius' claim of seventh and eighth phases after a general age of "labor for the Church" seems spurious.

However, there is an additional view of the Millennium that Augustine suggested that is not condemned but has fallen by the way side because it suggests a deeper specificity to Church history that is not necessarily apparent. Here, there is a "hybrid," never condemned but set aside. In this view, the "Millennium" is a spiritual Sabbath toward the end of the world but before the final apostasy of the very end, provided it is spiritual and not literal--a special reign of Christ figuratively on earth that is peaceful, and not confrontational with heresies and persecution and such, like the last 2000 years. More specifically, the scenes of the dragon before the chaining symbolize, in one dimension, the history of the Church up until the intermediate apostasy of our time. The chaining of the dragon then symbolizes Christ's spiritual victory over the intermediate apostasy through the massive repentance of the Gentiles that is coming and the reunion of Christians. The millennium here is then, again, a hybrid: it is not the entire period of Church history but this final age of spiritual rest, where the Church has brought humanity, at least temporarily, into a civilization of love (e.g., the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart, the Era of Peace), but the millennium is not literal; it is a spiritual reign of Christ, like Augustinianism. The release of the dragon after the age of peace symbolizes the great apostasy and final attack of the dragon, and then the last judgement is the Second Coming, all like Augustine.

Interestingly enough, this corroborates what Fatima and most fully approved mystics give: in current times, we are not at the end of the world, though an apostate culture reigns in former Christendom. We await, perhaps quite imminently, a Minor Chastisement--minor compared to the very end of the world--after which an unbelievable reversion of the former Christendom back to the Catholic Gospel will occur, leading to the near total renewal of the whole world. Christians will be reunited to Peter and there will be a substantial period of historical, spiritual peace on earth for a long but indeterminate time.

Then, at some point, the world will get finicky and forget that their secular godlessness almost ended the world, and shall fall into the great apostasy, at which time, the ultimate Antichrist shall arise, the bestial ultimate persecution of the Church, the conversion of the Jews, the Great Tribulation, and of course, the actual, literal Second Coming, which, as we know, brings the end of time as we know it.

With this view in mind, St Methodius’ model can be used, as we shall see.

A word, one will object: The New Testament period IS the final age. We await no new revelation. “It is the last hour”. As far as dispensations hold, that is true. For in the end, there are but two great ages, or dispensations, the Old and the New. However, already in Augustine’s analogy, sub-ages [5] are drawn out of the Old Dispensation. This is obviously not dispensationalism as in our brothers and sisters in error, the Fundamentalists. For Catholic theology teaches that God has more or less always used the same principles to judge man: charity: He has called all men of all times and places to seek out what truth they can find of Him, or has been given to them, and to seek to remain faithful to it as best as they can by grace, whether they understand grace explicitly or not. Sanctifying grace was and is the ticket, from Eden to the Fire of the New World that will never end.

But this obviously doesn’t abrogate the notion that sub phases of historical activity progress within these dispensations: The Flood is a different world from Babel, which is different from Egypt and the Exodus, which is different from the Exile, which is different from Maccabbees.

Similarly, the world around the Church has passed through various phases in Her history.

In infancy, she is underground, illegal, wanted dead or alive: persecuted by a pagan Empire that has not yet substantially converted and that misunderstands her.

In the first 700 years after Constantine, much of her world has converted, and she is no longer underground as in pagan Rome. Furthermore, she is not contending with pagans as much as she is with various heresies, most of which in this epoch, question the central mystery of faith, the Nature of God Himself as Triune and Incarnate.

After the first millennium, she then has a terrible rift, half of Christendom rejecting Peter.

In the Middle ages, she is flourishing for a time, despite tribulation here and there: Scholasticism, Sacred Art, the Age of Faith.

In Protestantism, she is now contending with an apocalyptic division of the Father’s children never before seen: The first great rift was wide geographically but minor in nature (Peter), but now, the whole of Apostolic Succession and Tradition has been cast out, and flurries of mutating factions are being tossed and fro by every wave of doctrine, a brute attempt to understand Scripture apart from the Church.

In the Enlightenment, it was bad enough to contend with myriads of Christians divided over Scripture, but now she is seeing a supernatural death of much of Christendom: for at least the heretics clung to Scripture, but now, the deists ,the rationalists, only accept reason. They have laughed at and scoffed at supernaturally inclined religion by severe disillusionment with religious chaos and bloodshed. They have confined themselves to a general Supreme Being and some natural law, but they will hear of no talk of Divine Intervention, Salvation, or Revelation.

And finally, in our own day, even reason is cast aside, and not even natural religiosity persists: atheism, relativism, materialism: even natural light is extinguished and only darkness is found in the modern European culture and its derivatives.

Similarly, as we have seen, that even though the darkness is back in bold since pagan Rome, we await one final light before history closes into the final darkness: a conditional chastisement and marvelous renewal, a period of spiritual peace. Only after this Sabbath-like, yet imperfect, rest from most serious sin, will the final darkness of apostasy arise again, followed by the end of human history.

In light of these things, we can apply the theology of the days of Creation in such a way that even the NT dispensation has sub-ages, as long as we, again, remember that God still judges by charity in any sub phase of history, whether Old OR New.

So now, before we try to work out the days of creation analogy, we need to recall the results of our abstract theology;

The Ages of the Old Law are 5, of the New Testament, 3

To recap the previous two prerequisites of this essay on the nature of the ages, we saw that God must first allow the two great lies of the fall to be digested by all of humanity, the antithesis of the two great reasons we exist--Baptismal disposition: to know, love and serve God in this life; and Marital disposition toward God, that we might marry God forever in the next life:

  1. Anti-Baptism, or no faith, no repentance, the wickedness of Noah's day, then Baptize humanity with the Flood, and then allow..
  2. Anti-Marriage, or materialism, joining in fornication with the Creation rather marriage to the Creator, materialism, or Babel, followed by the division of humanity into nations and the Marriage to the special people, Abraham and the Hebrews, to begin the way of the pilgrim for the prefiguring covenant.

Then, the way of the pilgrim must be traversed by the People of the Prefiguring Covenant [the Jews], which is three stages,

  1. The Purgative of Prefigurement, Egypt
  2. The Illuminative of Prefigurement, Exodus, Holy Land, Prophets, Dark Night of Soul, pre-Exile wickedness of Jews, and
  3. The Unitive of Prefigurement, Exile, Repentance, Renewal, Restoration, Martyrdom, Maccabees

Messiah, or the Incarnate One, then comes after the Unitive darkness, "martyrdom", of the People of Old. Which is to say, in any world that happens to fall and is to receive an Incarnation, the Messiah comes in the light of stage five, two lights in the Baptism and Marriage of the preeminent stages, and three lights for each of the three ways of the People of God, the purgative, the illuminative and the unitive.

After Messiah comes and forms the New, Fulfilling Covenant, the way of the pilgrim is then traversed by the rest of the nations, the New Kingdom, the spiritual kingdom, the Church. After the pilgrim way of the New People is complete, through martyrdom as with the Old, this time under NT Antichrist, the end of history follows, the crossing of the threshold, the Second Coming of the Messiah, when the world is recreated and iniquity utterly defeated.

  1. The Purgative of Fulfillment, Pagan Rome
  2. The Illuminative of Fulfillment, 300 - present: Catholic doctrinal development, dark night of soul, modern secular apostasy, and
  3. The Unitive of Fulfillment: Minor Chastisement, Renewal of Catholic Christendom, Age of Peace, Martyrdom, NT Antichrist and Great Apostasy

Hence, again, the nature of any salvation history is predetermined to be five ages for the Old Law, composed of two preeminent stages and the three stages of the pilgrim's way for the People of Old, followed by the Coming of Messiah, the New, Fulfilling Covenant, and then the same three pilgrim's way ages for the New Covenant People, or, that is, eight total ages.

The Days of Creation as Symbol of the Blueprint of the Ages

Now for, again, the central thesis of the discourse: this necessary outline of the greater ages of any world that is redeemed is veiled in the mystical meaning of both the days of creation (which are given in the beginning of Scripture) and the seven heads of the beast (which are given at the end of Scripture). And the meaning is this: just as history must consist, in the best of all possible worlds to be redeemed, of eight ages, each age consisting of two substages--a stage of sin, followed by a redemptive stage--just as the day is two substages, first darkness and then light, so God predestines the Scriptures to communicate this mystery in the days of creation and the heads of the beast.

Let us first consider the days of creation, and the implications of the metaphor.

The first obvious implication is that just as God created the world in six days, rested on the seventh, and rose on the eighth day, so God shall re-create the world in eight ages, which is to say, redeem humanity in eight stages, from the Fall to the New Creation inclusive. This Creation day analogy we will see perfectly images the whole Divine Plan. Toward this end, the first primary analogy is that each day of Creation symbolizes an age of the re-creation of the world in God's Salvation History; more specifically, each day and age have 2 parts: the first, a spiritual darkness and the second, a spiritual light ("Evening came, morning followed"). In this analogy then, just as there are eight days of creation, each of two parts, for 8*2=16 total parts, so human history will have sixteen total sub-parts, from the Fall in the OT all the way to the New Creation in the NT, inclusive, having the nature of alternating periods of darkness and light. Hence, this is who we will work it out. Here is the outline:

Ages of the Fall Digested

Day 1:
Darkness: The Fall, Anti-Baptism, Noah's Day
Light: The Flood, God Baptizes the world

Day 2:
Darkness: Anti-Marriage toward God, Tower of Babel
Light: Confounding of tongues and formation of Prefiguring People, Abraham

Way of the Pilgrim for Prefiguring People (the Jews)

Day 3:
Darkness: Purgative Way, Egypt Enslaves
Light: Illuminative way of Light, Exodus, OT Kingdom, Prophets

Day 4:
Darkness: Illuminative Dark Night of Soul, Intermediate pre-Exile Apostasy of Jews
Light: Unitive Way of Light, Exile, Repentance of Jews, Restoration to Holy Land

Day 5:
Darkness: Untive way Martyrdom: Maccabees, OT Antichrist Antiochus
Light: First Coming of Christ, formation of Church

-- Coming of Incarnate One --

Way of the Pilgrim for Church

Day 6:
Darkness: Purgative way, Pagan Rome persecutes
Light: Illuminative way of light of Church, Catholic Christendom and Development of Church doctrine, 300 - 1950

Day 7:
Darkness: Illuminative Dark Night of Soul, intermediate Apostasy of Gentiles, 1950 - present
Light: Unitive way of light: Minor Chastisement, Restoration of Catholicism, Fullness of Gentiles, Age of Peace

Day 8:
Darkness: Unitive Way Martyrdom, Great Apostasy, NT Antichrist
Light: Second Coming of Christ, end of world, General Resurrection, New Creation


The Sixth Day and the Sixth Age: God recreates the Gentiles through the Church

The first profound observation, even one that Augustine sees in "On the Catechizing of the Uninstructed", is in the meaning of the sixth day on which man is created in Genesis. Augustine, as commenting on the ages of salvation history, points out that just as God created man in His Likeness and Image on the sixth day, so also in the sixth age of history, pagan Rome followed by Catholic Christendom, God re-created man in His Image by placing sanctifying grace back into his soul through the Gospel of Christ, which indeed brought a continent and more of humanity who had hitherto been in the darkness of paganism and sin into the light of the fullness of God's Revelation and Salvation, Catholicism, the New, Fulfilling Covenant.

The Seventh Day, the Catholic Age of Peace, the Imperfect Sabbath from the Sin of History in this Old Creation

The analogy builds as we move on to the seventh day, the Sabbath of Old. Here, we employ St Methodius' analogy and other ECFs that see a full eight ages instead of just seven, but with the temperament of a little allegory: the "Millennium of rest", or the seventh age, is not a literal return of Christ, but is a figurative renewal, in that Christ’s casting of the beast and false prophet in the fire can be seen as His supreme victory over sin within human history, insofar as the coming chastisement of our time, foretold conditionally by Fatima and many other fully approved Private Revelations, will bring massive repentance of the world and restoration of Christian unity. The subsequent triumph of Our Lady's Heart will bring a true peace unto humanity, spiritual peace. Hence, it will truly be the greatest rest from sin since the world began, and second only to the eternal rest beyond time in the New Creation. In other words, just as in the Old Covenant, the prefiguring People celebrated the seventh day as the day of rest, so also shall humanity rest from the sin of history in the seventh light of that same history.

More specifically, we have seen that the seventh darkness of human history is the dark night of the soul in the New People's pilgrim's way, where the Gentiles shall depart from the Gospel they received in the sixth day by progressively questioning the deposit of faith. However, when the NT Intermediate Chastisement arises, fulfilling the OT Babylonian Exile, where the Gentiles shall experience the terrible consequences of their errors and sins, the Gentiles shall repent and be restored unto the New Covenant, thereby entering the unitive way for the Gentiles and Catholic Church, walking in the fullness of God's truth and grace for the final phase of light in human history, the light of the seventh day. Note also that the seventh day is a rest in the Old Creation, in as much as the seventh age of human history shall give the whole world in the Old Creation a rest from the sin of history For all practical purposes, this is the next great light of history for us, Our Lady's coming Triumph prophesied at Fatima and many other apparitions.

The "Eighth" Day Brings One Back to the "First"

The next observation is that seven days of creation, mirrored in our own earthly week of seven days, bear a profound analogy to the meaning of the salvation history, and this, namely, in the notion that the eighth day somehow brings one back to the first. And what do we mean? We mean that day eight, Sunday, on which Christ rose from the dead, making the eighth day the "new, ultimate Sabbath", is somehow also "the first day." And how does this relate to the question of salvation history? It implies profound parallels between the first and last "days", or "ages", of salvation history.

Specifically, in the darkness of the first day, or age, the near whole of humanity has just fallen the first time and is almost completely wicked, excepting a remnant, "Noah and his family." In a parallel situation, in the darkness of the eighth day, or age, humanity is once again nearly totally wicked (in the Great Apostasy), sparing a remnant, the faithful Catholics (who consist mainly of the near whole of the Jewish People, and a small portion of Gentiles). As it were, then, in the first day, humanity has fallen the first time, in the last day, humanity has fallen the final time.

Moreover, in the first day, God's response to the wickedness is to destroy the world and to begin to "recreate it", that is, redeem it. The mechanism of the destruction in this first day is water, which symbolizes the cleansing of humanity, its Baptism. And so, in a certain sense, in day one, God is beginning to "recreate the world" by beginning the process of its redemption.

Now, in the parallel situation of the eighth day, God's response to the great apostasy is also the destruction of the world, although in this case by fire (see 2 Peter 3). And the world that is destroyed by fire then gives rise a New World as well, but a world that shall never end, that is in the completion of the Divine Plan for Redemption, the General Resurrection and New Everlasting Creation. So, to recap, the world of the first day is destroyed and recreated by water. The world in the eighth day is destroyed and recreated by fire. The world in the light of the first day is a world that is anew, beginning to be redeemed by God. The world in the light of the last day is a world that is anew, but that has been utterly redeemed, a world that is everlasting and that shall never end.

Hence, as it were, the eighth day somehow brings humanity back to the first.

The Eighth Day, the Ultimate Sabbath, the Eternal Resurrection and New Creation

The final parallel of the days of creation is the ultimate Sabbath itself, which is to say, the eighth day. For, inasmuch as the Scriptures declare, "Your Sabbaths are not acceptable to me...", so the Sabbath rest of the seventh age is not the final ultimate rest for humanity.

In what sense? Because, the seventh day, the age of Our Lady's Peace, is followed by the eighth: the darkness of the final irrevocable apostasy, the great apostasy, the eighth night, which is followed by "resurrection from the dead", the ultimate Sabbath, the New Creation, which comes with the Second Coming of the Messiah, where all the just shall rest eternally in the light of justice and love forever and ever, without end, Amen. Note also how, just as Christ rose from the dead on the eighth day of the week, so all humanity shall rise in the general resurrection of the end of time, the eighth light of human history.

The Beast Heads as the Ages

Now to expand the implications of the greater ages to the imagery of the beast. As expected, the beast becomes of a symbol, in its supreme sense, of the fallen nature itself, which is manifested in the eight darknesses of the days of creation. Further, just as, in apocalypse 13, a head of the beast that was “mortally wounded” is “healed”, it shows time and again what we see in the days of Creation: the sun rises, the sun sets: spiritual darkness, or the fallen nature, manifests itself in a major way in salvation history, then it falls and gives way to a redemptive stage, which is to say, God "mortally wounds" the ages of sin with great acts of Redemption.

To move on, there is a Scripture in Apocalypse 17 where an angel gives a mysterious meaning to the heads of the beast. Let us now look into this, and discover that every component of the angel's explanation of the seven heads in Apocalypse 17:9-11 bears profound meaning for the ages we have analyzed throughout the discourses. Let us start with the text itself:

Rev. 17:7-11

7 And the angel said to me: Why dost thou wonder? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast which carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns. 8 The beast, which thou sawest, was, and is not, and shall come up out of the bottomless pit, and go into destruction: and the inhabitants on the earth (whose names are not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world) shall wonder, seeing the beast that was, and is not. 9 And here is the understanding that hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, upon which the woman sitteth, and they are seven kings: 10 Five are fallen, one is, and the other is not yet come: and when he is come, he must remain a short time. And the beast which was, and is not: the same also is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into destruction.

The Beast Was and Is Not, and Will be Again

The first question is the mystical meaning of the idea that the "beast was, and is not, and will be again [in the eighth]." Profound meaning can be assuaged as follows. The text implies that at some point in the past, the beast "was", that at St. John's time, he "is not", and, presumably in the eighth "king", he "will be again".

The connotation is essentially this, from a deeper analysis: that in the beginning, the fall "reigned" ["was"] in human history, but that, beginning with the Flood, God's first act of Redemption of humanity, the fallen nature "ceased to be the prevailing force in human history", which is to say, the beast was "not." Which is to say, beginning with the Flood, God dealt the first lethal blow to the fallen nature. For, before the Flood, God had not, as of yet, intervened to redeem humanity in any significant sense, which lends itself to the notion that the fallen nature, having never felt the blow of any Redemptive act of God, clearly held sway over the majority of man in Noah's day [just prior to the Flood]. Hence, in the first great darkness, the beast "was".

But once God intervened in the first Redemptive Action, the Flood, the Redemption of humanity, the progressive stages that draw greater spiritual goods from the manifestations of the fallen nature, was underway and, as it were, caused the fallen nature to take a secondary role in the course of salvation history, so that, precisely because God is in the process of Redeeming the human race, the beast "is not".

How much more so was this true in St. John's day, in that the fullness of Redemption had come: the Christ. Hence, all the more does the fallen nature take a back seat to the spread of the Gospel. Hence, especially in St. John's day, "the beast is not."

Although, that the fallen nature is both wounded and secondary to God's redemptive process, it does not abrogate the fact that the fallen nature still manifests itself in the punctuated stages of resistance along the way, so that kings still rise and fall after the first, who was, again, "primary." These secondary kings are then the intervening ones between one and eight.

However, there inevitably comes the "final fall" that cannot be cured spiritually in a practical sense, namely, the eighth, the great apostasy. This would essentially be the beast that "is again", meaning, in the times of the great apostasy, humanity is practically incurably turned away from God, so that the fallen nature once again reigns in human history. The corollary to this assertion is that in the time of the final apostasy, a further spiritual good can no longer be drawn from this stage of darkness in such a manner that a greater share of the Redemption can be had. The only spiritual good that shall come in this is the conversion of the Jews, to the detriment of the loss of the Gentile faith.

Hence, just as the fallen nature reigned in the beginning of human history (the Fall and wickedness of Noah's day) [the beast "was"], so the darkness reigns again at the close of human history, where all but a remnant of humanity are in rebellion against God [the beast "will be again"].

The profound difference, however, is that the fallen nature is curable historically in the first case, whereas not so in the latter. We have seen this implied, for example, in the text of Hebrews 6, where it is argued that once a person has [fully] tasted of the fruits of God's love and redemption, a subsequent apostasy is practically incurable. There is also the practicality that after the sabbath like rest of the light of the seventh age, nothing remains to be given unto humanity by God.

Why? Because, as we have seen, the New, or Fulfilling Covenant, represents the fullness of all that the Divine Persons can impart to a created world, saving only the world that never ends, the Beatific Vision. We have seen this in the argument of the angelic situation: the angel comprehends all and digests utterly, given an intellect that is immediate and unimpeded. Hence, the demons presumably comprehended the fullest implications of Divine Revelation as they were tested. Therefore, their rejection of God, as indicated in the CCC, is so complete and depraved, rejecting the essential totality of what God can give to a creature short of the Beatific Vision itself, that it renders repentance impossible, and makes the sin unforgivable in nature.

Similarly, when, in the seventh light, humanity is restored to the Gospel, being shown the apocalyptic consequences of the various errors and sins of its turning from the full New Covenant, and, were it not enough, being given a restoration, a glorious period of peace, the full reconciliation between material and spiritual knowledge, nothing further remains for God to do should a subsequent rebellion of the fallen nature occur [that is, after the seventh light, or the light of the unitive way of the Church]. Hence, the apostasy that follows the seventh day sabbath is irrevocable, unforgivable, so as to warrant the end of human history, the Final Judgement, and the permanent separation of good and evil.

The Beast Kings Delineated

The residual verses of the beast fill in gaps that expand on the theology:

"Five have fallen."

That is, five stages of sin are the Old Law, as we have seen confirmed by St. Methodious of Olympus and St. Augustine. Five ages are the predetermined means of preparing for Messiah. The two preminent darknesses afflicting the whole of humanity, the Pre-Flood Wickedness and Tower of Babel and three darknesses of the saint's way for the Prefiguring People: dark night of senses: Egyptian Enslavement; dark night of Soul: Pre-Babylonian-Exile Apostasy; Martyrdom: OT Antichrist Antiochus.

"One is."

Clearly, the stage existing in St. John's time is the sixth, the one that is the purgative dark night of the senses for the New Pilgrim People, the resistance of the pagans to conversion and their subsequent persecution of the Church.

"And the other has not yet come, and when he does, he must continue a short space."

Clearly, this is the seventh darkness, the dark night of the Soul for the Church, the intermediate apostasy. For all practical purposes, this is our current age. Behold, that stage falls, as it were, from the Minor Chastisement, which restores the Gentiles to the Church. Which brings us to the eighth, the Great Apostasy, which we have already treated significantly:

"And the beast which was and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goes into perdition."

“of the seven”

The only comment remaining, is the concern with the phrase, that the beast in the eighth king "is of the seven", which is simply from a mystical point of view: it is the fallen nature of man, instigated by the seduction of the dragon (who likewise bears seven heads), that constitutes the source of cause of all the stages of sin. For in each stage, the same fallen nature and the same lies that it follows are the theology of the darknesses: anti-Baptism ("Have no regard for religious and moral truth, nor to obey them") and spiritual anti-Marriage ("Do not live for the end of marrying God in Eternity. Spiritually fornicate with this world, find all your happiness and desire in the brute superficialities of the material existence.")

So then, in conclusion, the mystical meaning of the days of creation and the beast complement one another, and seem to bear forth the necessary blueprint of a world that is to be redeemed, that is, in its greater ages!

PS a little tidbit, the same nature in music:

Addendum: Natural Music

Note that in music, there are seven notes in a pure key, and when you reach step eight, you return to note one, where you started. As in, "do, re, mi, fa, so, la, ti, do." And in any key, there is a primary major scale (major chords and songs are "happy songs") and a primary minor scale (minor chords and songs are "sad songs"). So then, salvation history can also be seen as seven great steps of light, or Redemption (joy) or seven great steps of sin (sorrow).

And in both cases, the stage of note one bears the imprint of note eight.

In joy, in both note one and note eight, the world is destroyed and a new world comes forth: in the first joy, the world is a world that is beginning to be redeemed, the old world having been destroyed by water. In the eighth joy, it is a world that has already been redeemed that is destroyed by fire, and the New World that comes forth shall never end, the New Creation.

In both phases one and eight of sorrow, the darkness is a world that is almost completely wicked, in rebellion against God, saving a remnant. In the first sorrow, the remnant is Noah and his family, but the wicked world knows so little of God and CAN be redeemed, can know God deeper and be raised up spiritually. In the eighth sorrow, the remnant is the Catholic Church, composite only of the Jews and a minority of Gentiles, but the world that is in rebellion can NO longer be redeemed. It has fully tasted of the truth and grace of God, and so is practically incapable of coming back to God, and supremely insults His Divine Plan and incomprehensible mysteries that He has given them.

Eight days. Eight kings. Eight notes. The meaning of salvation history?