Protestantism, Enlightenment and Secular Apostasy in Apocalypse

Summary

The Trumpets: In Apocalypse Chapters 7-9, there are the seven trumpets that bring with them various calamities, and those Sealed by God in the forehead are not harmed by them. We can see the “trumpets” as the “proclamations” of the Church in her major doctrinal development over her history. When persons do not heed the Church, they are “spiritually harmed” in the same manner as their rejection of teaching. But good Catholics are spiritually protected in their minds from false teaching, protected in their forehead from heresy and error. Hence, the Seal is faithful Catholicism.

The Three Great Woes: the last three trumpets are great woes. The last phases of attack on the Church and the fall from Catholic Christendom were three great negative chapters in the history of the Church:

Protestantism Enlightenment, age of worldly reason Secular Apostasy

Protestantism: Protestantism unleashed an unfathomable geometric progression of mutating and mutually conflicting factions of heresy that tortured innocent heretics by leaving them in uncertainty. The loss of five of the seven Catholic sacraments, the ones that require the Episcopate, served as torture and uncertainty in their hearts. But Catholics, who have the stability of the Church, were protected from this great age of sorrow and confusion.

Enlightenment, age of Reason: Protestantism left its victims spiritually tortured but still supernaturally alive with Scripture and Baptism and Marriage. But in the Enlightenment and general age of worldliness, supernatural religion was cast aside in favor of merely natural knowledge and goodness, or Reason. Because supernatural truth and life was extinguished, it was a “death” of a great portion of mankind, a supernatural death, even as the warriors of the second great woe “kill” a third of mankind.

Secular Apostasy: the modern age is finally godless, rejecting even reason: atheism, relativism, hedonism, violation of all natural law, materialism. It is veritably “the false prophet and beast”.

10,000 and 20,000: In the second great woe, the aforementioned killing troops number “10,000 times 20,000”. In another parable of Christ, He says if you have an army of 10,000 going against 20,000, count the cost, better call a truce. The parable has a clear context to the futility of the natural order: your merely natural family can never fulfill your desires. You may have to choose supernatural family over your natural one if you convert and they do not. They may hate you and desert you. Also, the tower is unfinished. As at Babel, no materialistic grandeur, however great, can fill the void that only God can fill. Man restrained by national division in the wake of Babel, is always striving to recover it, the army of 20,000 swallowing 10,000. This futility of the mere natural order can then be veiled in the second great woe and the same number of 10,000 and 20,000, the age between Protestantism, a severely disturbed supernatural order, and the modern secular apostasy, which altogether irrational: this intermediate period has a natural goodness that is considered salvific, the elevation of reason and man’s brute natural efforts as the supreme fulfillment, but it is futile, can never satiate, and is doomed to give way to perverse, renewed Babel.



10,000 and 20,000, the Gospel and the Apocalypse Second Woe

In Jesus’ Gospel two weeks ago, He suggests that the 10,000 army call a truce with the 20,000. It is interesting that in the Apocalypse second great woe, Apocalypse 9, an army of 20,000 times 10,000 kills a third of mankind.

I would like to offer a profound interpretation of these Scriptures to draw a parallel. For, we should remember that Scripture is meant to be used in other places, one passage applied to another. That is, instead of like Fundamentalists, who take the text literally and without theological merit, we must realize that Scripture is a coherent whole, and that, therefore, we should read it in light of other Scripture passages and in light of the Catholic Tradition and doctrine, which ever evolves and develops, thereby opening up newer insights into familiar Scriptures already studied. This is the beauty of the parabolic nature of the Gospel, of Catholic theology, as I have repeatedly drawn forth in other articles. As Peter Kreeft once put it a recent article featured here at 4marks, many times a literal event or thing in Scripture is meant itself to point to a greater spiritual reality. This is the profound faith that we have, the rich depth of what God has left us, a depth that grows as the Church draws ever new riches from the Apostolic Deposit of faith.

Now, admittedly, what I will propose in regards to this Scripture is speculative. However, I believe it to be appropriate and common-sensical based on theological ideas I have proposed from previous featured articles. In fact, in several of these articles, I have argued that one can look at passages of Scripture and draw forth profound Catholic doctrinal parallels that apply to other Scriptures that are seemingly unrelated. This is precisely what I intend to do with this passage of “count the cost” and the kings of 10,000 and 20,000 armies, respectively.

Toward that end, I will need to remind the reader of interpretations of other

Scriptures that have been featured here at 4marks before so as to set up the basis to continue the analysis with this text.

So, we can recall several of the articles that will need to be revisited, some of which include the following. Please consider reading them for a better background:

Loaves and Fishes, Sacramental Ecclesiology? https://www.facebook.com/notes/scott-pauline/five-loaves-two-fish-the-seven-sacraments-and-heresy/10153467244877144

Baptism and Marriage and the False Prophet https://www.facebook.com/notes/scott-pauline/the-modern-darkness-its-supreme-lies/10153459171167144

A Theology of the Protestant Presumption and Scrupulosity https://www.facebook.com/notes/scott-pauline/a-theology-of-protestant-presumption-and-scrupulosity/10153457014682144

The Seal of God and the Mark of the Beast https://www.facebook.com/notes/scott-pauline/the-church-militant-the-godless-the-144000-and-the-mark-of-the-beast/10153464918987144

Firstly, allow me to briefly state where we are going. Obviously, the numbers 20,000 and 10,000 are symbolic. For, knowing the size of literal armies is absurd. Remember from the article, True Wisdom and the Apocalypse, 7 Emperors or 7 Ages, we saw that knowing geo-political scenarios of world wars is fruitless. It is the SPIRITUAL conditions of history that pave the ages in its path.

5 Loaves, 2 fish, the Sacraments

Now, the first recollection I would like to make is the analogy I drew from the loaves and fishes, how the five loaves and two fish can image the Sacraments and how two of them, the two fish, are left to good persons outside the Church: persons outside of Apostolic succession but with good will toward God, or heretics, retain 2 fish, 2 of the seven sacraments, Baptism and Marriage. For, anytime we receive grace from God, we are being fed spiritually. Hence 5+2 objects of food can be seven total sources of grace, the seven sacraments, the greatest sources of grace in our faith. Of the seven, 5 require the priests, hence, heretics, who do not have valid priests [holy orders], because they are separated from Apostolic Succession [Bishops], which is the only legitimate source of Holy Orders, must necessarily lose all sacraments that at least require a priest. Hence, they lose five: Confession, Eucharist, Confirmation, Holy Orders, Anointing of the Sick. They retain the two that do not require the priests, Baptism and Marriage. Anyone can Baptise, and the Baptism of Heretics is valid, de fide, says Mother Church. As for Marriage, it is not conferred by the priest, but by the man and woman upon each other, through the vows, and then the consummation.

2 as Symbol of Heresy

Now, the first idea that I will draw from this is that because hereTICS retain “2” sacraments, the number “2”, on one level, can be seen as a symbol of hereSY.

2 Sacraments, Baptism and Marriage, are Summary of all Goodness

In a derivative article, on Meditations of the Apocalypse, and Nothing New under the Sun, I argued how the basic Sacraments of Baptism and Marriage, which basic good persons retain, form the basis of all goodness:

How have we seen this? Simple: The Catechism gives us the two reasons we exist, two principles that summarize all that is good in our life:

  1. To know, love, and serve God in this life
  2. To be happy with God forever in the next.

Now, the first principle is really at least the implicit desire for Baptism, or the desire to remain faithful to your Baptismal vows. Why? Simple: to know God is to have faith in all He has revealed as best as one can find, and to love and serve God is repentance, or good will, the desire to shun wrongdoing and do God’s will with His help. But faith and repentance are the basic dispositions of Baptism or the resolve to remain faithful to Baptism. Therefore, Baptism forms the basis of the first great summary of all goodness in this world.

What about the second principle? This is simply the ultimate fulfillment of earthly Marriage, the other basic sacrament we have spoken of. This is immediate if only because, to be “happy with God forever in the next life” is really just the eternal Marriage with God. For how else do we see earthly marriage except as the foreshadowing of the marriage to come between Christ and the Church? Therefore, Marriage symbolizes the other great basic principle of goodness, to seek our fulfillment in the next world, in marriage to the CreaTOR, rather than seeking our fulfillment in this world and in the CreaTION.

And therefore, Baptism and Marriage are not just basic sacraments, they are themselves the base signs of all goodness.

2 “Anti-Sacraments” are Summary of all Evil, “Ultimate Heresy”, Full “False Prophet”

But then, as we have seen in that article on the apocalyptic imagery and in Nothing New under the Sun, if we take the base principles of goodness and flip them around to their opposite principles, we clearly get the basis of all wickedness!

This is easily proved since, if the two principles above are the guiding purpose for everything we do, then one who goes totally against these principles is totally against God’s goodness and therefore totally wicked! But, the two principles are the same as the signs of the basic sacraments of Baptism and Marriage. Therefore, it follows that the opposite principles of Baptism and Marriage are the summary of all wickedness.

Now, obviously, we can appropriately refer to the opposite of these two Sacraments’ principles as Anti-Baptism and Anti-Marriage. What these “anti-sacraments” are is then easily seen:

If Baptism is faith and repentance, then anti-Baptism is no faith and no repentance. Believing as one wishes, and doing as one wishes.

Similarly, if the ultimate principle of Marriage is to “marry” the CreaTOR in the next life, anti-Marriage, is seeking, in a spiritual sense, to "fornicate" with the CreaTION in this world. And this is merely materialism, seeking fulfillment in superficial, created goods [the things of this world: pleasures, possessions, accomplishments], rather than in the Uncreated good of eternal life with God. This is something we also saw in Pentecost and the New Babel: the Woman is the chaste spouse of God, the People of God who are called to marry Him forever in Heaven, and the Whore, the opposite of chastity, is the wicked world that wants its “gratification” in this world, prostituting herself with the Creation rather than seeking to marry the Creator.

Hence, all wickedness is in two “anti-sacraments”, anti-Baptism and anti-Marriage.

Now, in the apocalypse, the false prophet has “2 horns, like a Lamb,” Apocalypse 13, middle section, and the Lamb has “seven horns,” Apocalypse 4-5. Horns can be symbols of power in Scripture theology. The greatest of Christ's power is in his grace, of which the seven sacraments are the greatest source. Hence, the seven horns of the Lamb can be the seven sacraments.

The two horns of the false prophet can then be, appropriately, the “power” of the dragon’s most false words, the dragon's mockery of the hereTICs' 2 remnant sacraments, Baptism and Marriage, which are then, appropriately, anti-Baptism and anti-Marriage, which we have seen above to be the basis of all evil, the ultimate hereSY.

So again, 2 can be a symbol of heresy and is reinforced.

Two fish, 2. I would now like to look at the 5.

5 Sacraments of Stability, 5 Stages of Torture

Remember, if the two fish, the sacraments that arise from the place of chaos, the sea, are the heretics’ sacraments, Baptism and Marriage (since heretics are “tossed to and fro by every wave of doctrine” and since the beasts of apocalypses many times arise from the unbridled passions of the sea [see Daniel 7, or beginning of Apocalypse 13]), the five loaves come from the earth, the place of stability, since the barley that they are made from grows in the earth. Moreover, we have seen the ground described as foundation (see, 1 Tim 3:15, the Church is the ground of truth; Apocalypse 12, the earth of the Magisterium saves the woman from the rivers of error; Peter is the rock, build your house on solid ground, etc). The earth is then the stability of doctrine found in the Apostolic Succession of Oral Tradition, Bishops and the Priesthood. Hence, the five sacraments of loaves are the sacraments of stability. See, again, the article on the Loaves and Fishes, and also, The Earth, the Sand and the Sea, and the Dragon, the Beast and the False Prophet.

The five loaves, then, being the sacraments of stability, coming from the earth of Sacred Tradition and Apostolic succession, are those that require the priests: Confession, Eucharist, Holy Orders, Confirmation, and the Anointing of the Sick.

Moreover, if we recall the article before on Scrupulosity and Presumption within Protestantism, we saw that these five sacraments truly relieve scrupulosity, providing stability for the Christian who is worried about going to hell. Without these five sacraments, the spiritual life of the humble Christian is torture:

…Is there mercy [Confession] after falling from grace?

…Does God want to help Confirm us in election, or predestine us to hell?

…Is our Church the true Holy Communion, or are we in a false sect?

…Do our ministers speak for God [Holy Orders], or are their doctrines perhaps erroneous?

…And finally, does God still want to save me in the evening of life [Anointing of the Sick], or am I already lost?

Therefore, a significant meaning of five in the context of ecclesiology is that good Christians who live outside of formal Apostolic Succession (mainly Protestants) are really subject to five distinct layers of spiritual torture if they do not presume salvation like hardened heretics, namely, the five stages of gap in the supernatural life that would give them stability, the five loaves, the sacraments of the priesthood, which comes from the stability of Apostolic Tradition and Succession.

The Seal of God and the Mark of the Beast

A final principle I would like to recall is a possible approach to the apocalypse’s trumpets, and the associated Seal of God in the forehead, which is given just before the beginning of the trumpets (protecting its bearers from their harm) and the Mark of the Beast in the forehead or hand, which itself occurs in the context of the final trumpet.

Similarly, in looking at the article on apocalyptic imagery, and recalling the principles of True Wisdom and the Apocalypse, seeing this “protection” of the Seal of God from the Trumpets and “the virginity or chastity” of the 144,000 who receive this Seal as literal is absurd, and, hence, a symbolic meaning is in order. This is true for several reasons. The first is, Christ does not promise us protection from temporal woes. For fires, and hail, and floods and physical torture, and death, have all come to good Christians throughout the ages. We are not immune to suffering in this life. In fact, the call of Christ is for us to “take up our cross and follow [Him].” Hence, immediately, the protection of the Seal is clearly spiritual in nature. Secondly, obviously the elect, or even Catholics more specifically, are not merely 144,000 in number. Rather, 144,000 is factored as 12 X 12 X 1,000, of which 12 are tribes of Israel, 12 are Apostles, and 1,000 is innumerable. And the fullness of the Old and New is in the 12 tribes and Apostles, and that fullness subsists exclusively in the Ultimate People of God, the Catholic Church, which indeed consists of men in every race, language and tongue (a thousand…).

Moreover, whereas Catholics of all ages have suffered immensely in history to varying degrees, all those faithful ones have this one protection: protection of their forehead’s object, the intellect, from doctrinal error, in that the Church is absolutely “protected” in going astray in Her teaching on faith and morals.

The 7 Trumpets

From this context, another common sense meaning is seen: the trumpets, which in Scripture are many times symbols of “proclamation”, can simply be images of the greater “doctrinal promulgations of the Church”, such that those who heed the proclamations of whatever age (which are faithful Catholics) are clearly “protected” from the spiritual “harm” that comes from rejecting them. More specifically, recall the article on Christian Disunity, where, in a similar Scripture embedded in the trumpets, the Two Witnesses can “harm” those who try to kill them, in as much as those who attempt to harm the “witness” of the Church’s Scripture and Tradition, the Written and Oral Word of God, harm themselves intrinsically by the very same degree in which they attack the truths of the Church. For God’s Revelatory Truth is part of our Redemption, and to misunderstand it is spiritual harm, whether culpable or not.

Finally, we can see where we are going: all these insights will build to view the specific trumpets in mind, the three great woes, in the context of the insights we have seen.

For now, we have seven trumpets, and not enough space to fully elaborate. Suffice it to say that if the trumpets image the ages of the primary doctrinal development of the Church, and if we consider that these ages have followed the sources of Catholic truth in the pyramid in perfect sequence

(see the Catholic Mystical Pyramid, the Message Part II, Opposition gets Worse, the five sources being…

Trinity and Incarnate Christ

The Pope

The General Bishops and their Oral Tradition

The Bible

Reason, unaided natural philosophy

),

of which there are five, I suggest that the 5 sources be correlated to the 7 trumpets. In this case, the reader can anticipate the final three trumpets will attack the last three sources respectively: the Protestant Rebellion attacked the General Bishops and Oral Tradition, the Enlightenment attacked the Scriptures (and all sources above that as well), and the secular apostasy attacked Reason and all sources above it as well.

Moreover, just as the last three trumpets are great woes, so, clearly, these last stages of the Church’s doctrinal development have been the worst of the offenses against her teaching. Of course, there is a discrepancy of two between five sources and seven trumpets. Long story short, for now, I suggest a common sense partitioning in which two sources of truth, namely, the Trinity and Incarnation and the General Bishops, be each broken into two stages, with each source having first a partial attack and then full attack. That is:

The Trinity and Incarnation source is first attacked in part by the initial Trinitarian and Christological heresies, then in full with Islam.

And the Bishops are first attacked in part by the moral scandal they gave in the latter portion of the Middle Ages, and then in full with Protestantism.

With this model, the seven trumpets can be seen this way:

  1. Attack Trinity and Incarnation in Part: Initial Trinitarian and Christological heresies: Arianism, Nestorianism, Monophysitism, etc
  2. Attack Trinity and Incarnation in Full: Islam
  3. Attack Peter in Full: The Great Schism
  4. Attack Bishops and Tradition in Part: The Moral Scandal of the Bishops
  5. Attack Bishops and Tradition in Full: The Protestant Rebellion
  6. Attack Scripture in Full: The Enlightenment
  7. Attack Reason in Full: The Modern Secular Apostasy

The Final Three Trumpets, the Great Woes

Now, we are finally in a position to apply our principles of two as symbol of heresy, the false prophet’s two horns as the ultimate heresy and sign of total apostasy, and the five loaves as sign of the sacraments of stability, with the five stages of their loss being spiritual torture.

Incidentally, all these numbers occur in the context of the Apocalypse’s three great woes (see Apocalypse Chapter 9):

More specifically, in the first great woe, or fifth trumpet, those without the Seal of God are tortured for five months but do not die (although they wish they could die).

In the second great woe, or sixth trumpet, an army of twenty thousand times ten thousand kills a third of mankind. (this will be handled last…)

And in the third great woe, the final trumpet, or seventh, the false prophet has “two horns, like a Lamb”, who has seven.

The first and last woes should more or less be clear:

Protestantism

And the fifth angel sounded the trumpet, and I saw a star fall from heaven upon the earth, and there was given to him the key of the bottomless pit. [2] And he opened the bottomless pit: and the smoke of the pit arose, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened with the smoke of the pit. [3] And from the smoke of the pit there came out locusts upon the earth. And power was given to them, as the scorpions of the earth have power: [4] And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, nor any green thing, nor any tree: but only the men who have not the sign of God on their foreheads. [5] And it was given unto them that they should not kill them; but that they should torment them five months: and their torment was as the torment of a scorpion when he striketh a man.

[6] And in those days men shall seek death, and shall not find it: and they shall desire to die, and death shall fly from them. [7] And the shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto battle: and on their heads were, as it were, crowns like gold: and their faces were as the faces of men. [8] And they had hair as the hair of women; and their teeth were as lions: [9] And they had breastplates as breastplates of iron, and the noise of their wings was as the noise of chariots and many horses running to battle. [10] And they had tails like to scorpions, and there were stings in their tails; and their power was to hurt men five months. And they had over them

[11] A king, the angel of the bottomless pit; whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in Greek Apollyon; in Latin Exterminans, [12] One woe is past, and behold there come yet two woes more hereafter.

In the first Woe, the 5th trumpet, five months of torture are received on those who don't have the seal of God. The seal of God is given to the forehead, the chaste virgins. Again, the forehead is chaste or pure only if what lies behind it is free of stain, the intellect, retaining all doctrine without error. This alone is had by Catholics. Therefore, those without the Seal of God are all persons who are not Catholic. Those tortured in the first woe for five months are Protestants, because they lack the five sacraments that give stability against scrupulosity.

Hence, the first woe is corroborated as the Protestant Rebellion.

Woe 2 is more complicated, so will we deal with this momentarily. (Note, for now, it is a midway stage between Protestantism and the Secular apostasy of current times, the Enlightenment).

The Secular Apostasy


And I saw another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns, like a lamb, and he spoke as a dragon. [12] And he executed all the power of the former beast in his sight; and he caused the earth, and them that dwell therein, to adore the first beast, whose wound to death was healed. [13] And he did great signs, so that he made also fire to come down from heaven unto the earth in the sight of men. [14] And he seduced them that dwell on the earth, for the signs, which were given him to do in the sight of the beast, saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make the image of the beast, which had the wound by the sword, and lived. [15] And it was given him to give life to the image of the beast, and that the image of the beast should speak; and should cause, that whosoever will not adore the image of the beast, should be slain.

Woe 3 is the modern Secular apostasy, the false prophet's two horns are a symbol of total spiritual darkness, total wickedness:

No Baptismal desire (no faith, no repentance, either atheism or relativism)

No desire for Marriage with God (seeking rather spiritual immoral intercourse with the World, the whore of Babylon, materialism)

The mark in the forehead is the total opposite of the Seal in the forehead: if the Seal in the forehead is total purity of intellect, infallible Catholic truth, the mark in the forehead is total apostasy from the truth, secular materialism (atheism or relativism). The mark in the hand is no good "works of the hands", no repentance, doing what one wants instead of what God wants. Therefore, the ones with the mark are mainly atheists and relativists.

The Enlightenment

Now for Woe 2:

And the sixth angel sounded the trumpet: and I heard a voice from the four horns of the great altar, which is before the eyes of God, [14] Saying to the sixth angel, who had the trumpet: Loose the four angels, who are bound in the great river Euphrates. [15] And the four angels were loosed, who were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year: for to kill the third part of men.

[16] And the number of the army of horsemen was twenty thousand times ten thousand. And I heard the number of them. [17] And thus I saw the horses in the vision: and they that sat on them, had breastplates of fire and of hyacinth and of brimstone, and the heads of the horses were as the heads of lions: and from their mouths proceeded fire, and smoke, and brimstone. [18] And by these three plagues was slain the third part of men, by the fire and by the smoke and by the brimstone, which issued out of their mouths. [19] For the power of the horses is in their mouths, and in their tails. For, their tails are like to serpents, and have heads: and with them they hurt. [20] And the rest of the men, who were not slain by these plagues, did not do penance from the works of their hands, that they should not adore devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and wood, which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk:

[21] Neither did they penance from their murders, nor from their sorceries, nor from their fornication, nor from their thefts.

First, an interesting digression of how we get the number 20,000 times 10,000.

In the apocalypse 9, in the sixth trumpet, or second great woe, there is an army that in Greek is rendered literally myriads of myriads.

Now a myriad is either an uncountable number or 10,000 in Biblical theology.

Secondly, when a number is mentioned in the plural (as in a time, times, and a half time) and no quantifier is given, we assume the smallest countable plural, 2 (that is, “a time, times and a half time” is … “a time, TWO times, and a half time”).

Hence, myriads of myriads is literally "two ten thousands of ten thousands", as rendered by the Catholic Scripture Douhay Rheims version.

Now, remember how we factored 144,000 as 12 x 12 x 1000 to make the fullness of the People of God, of Old and New, the Catholic Church. So then, 20,000 times 10,000 is factored like this:

2 x 10 x 1000 and 10 x 1000

Now, in biblical theology, 10 is already established as a symbol of the world, or worldliness (Daniel's fourth beast of chapter 7 has ten horns, the dragon and first beast of apocalypse 12 and 13 each have ten horns.)

Remember, 2 can be a symbol of heresy.

Therefore, the first number, 20,000 becomes...

Heresies [2] of the World [10] Multiplied or Confounded [1000]

2 x 10 x 1000

The second number is pure worldliness [10] multiplied or confounded [1000]

10 x 1000

Now the Enlightenment has two substages. In the first stage, its adherents are still religious but only naturally so, in that they believe that religion is on the level of the world, meaning, that religion is never SUPERnatural, that is, never on the level of heaven, never God coming down to meet man from ABOVE. Rather, they believe religion is on the level of the WORLD, that is, man TRIES from below to FIND God above. In other words, man strives on his OWN to find the truth and ability to live virtuously. The belief that man must find the truth on his own, from merely Reason, is called rationalism. And the idea that God does not intervene with this world, leaving man to his own devices for happiness, is called deism. Hence, for the deists and rationalists, religion is, again, of the world [10], and since all their ideologies are heresies [2], this first stage of Enlightenment is worldly heresy [2 x 10]. Further, these worldly heresies were just as confounded as the multitudes of Protestantism, in that there were as many opinions in deism and rationalism as there were deists and rationalists (just as there were as many forms of Protestantism as Protestants) [1000].

In the second phase of Enlightenment, the philosophies were no longer regarding religion, if even natural religion. They were purely worldly. For, the social and political ideologies of the 1800's and first half of 1900's were strictly worldly, trying to solve the problems of human life with only reason, or the base knowledge of the world, without regard for God. In fact, the world wars brought back neo-pagan nationalism, which is itself worldly, as it was in pagan kingdoms of rivalry in ancient times. Nazism and Fascism were regarded as the peak of Enlightenment thoughts, and they were purely worldly, asserting superiorities of race and dictatorship of the states, again, like the pagan kingdoms ancient times. Hence, this was, again, purely worldly [10] thought confounded [1000].

And what did these two phases of worldly religion and purely worldly philosophies do to the world? They only killed a great portion of man supernaturally, in that they stripped man of his role as dependent upon a Creator for supernatural intervention and revelation. They caused a supernatural death in those who were deceived by them.

For, if it was true that the Protestants did not fully die supernaturally, seeing as they retained supernatural Christian religion, so the Enlightenment brought about supernatural death. The Protestants who were scrupulous surely wished they could die spiritually, in the sense that they did not want to cower in fear of hell through uncertain spiritual torture. But they did not die, for they retained supernatural fear of God, the base sacraments of Baptism and Marriage.

The Futility of the Merely Natural Means for Salvation

Now for the Scriptures of the Gospel a few Sundays ago. In the Gospel narrative, Christ says count the cost. Do not build a tower if you cannot complete it. If you have an army of 10,000 and you are going against 20,000, better to send a delegate and call a truce, as if to imply that the 10,000 and 20,000 should unite and compound their armies for a greater cooperative victory (even as the Enlightenment has two great armies in alliance, worldly heresies and purely worldly philosophies).

In the preceding section, Christ says, you must be ready to hate even your own flesh and blood family to inherit the kingdom.

A deeper meaning is present: supernatural love of God must take precedence over everything in this world. For, you can never refuse to convert to the Gospel to save your family peace. If your family threatens to disown you and turn you in to die by the state if you convert to Christianity, you must convert and be left for dead by your family.

And why? One, you will go to hell if you choose natural relationship with physical kin over supernatural relationship with God and spiritual kin.

And secondly, it is because no merely natural goodness, even the love of physical family, can fulfill you. Only the supernatural possession of God and the saints' fellowship in heaven can fully satiate what you long for in the recession of your hearts.

Also, the tower of the Gospel here can parallel the tower of Babel. Recall the tower of Babel: man is trying to find his fulfillment in the material world, joined as one human race, but not in love of God. Rather, man is infatuated with himself and material glory. But the point is, THIS CAN NEVER FULFILL HIM. No amount of materialist grandeur can ever satiate the human heart. The lie of materialism: that pleasures, possessions, and egotistical accomplishments can ultimately fulfill what you are looking for, and not immeasurable love forever in the next life. Hence, at Babel, the world is pursuing an end that will never give it rest and true beatitude, but it is too early for early man to understand. So God must interrupt the construction of the tower and divide humanity against itself, as in the kingdoms that wage war with one another, the aftermath of the fall of Babel: war, divisiveness, strife. The conquering of kingdoms, one upon another. For even after Babel, humanity still strives to regain it, and does regain it by the time of Christ. For eventually, all the armies of the best of the world called a truce and were ruled by the great king of Rome.

But now, here is the lesson: natural goodness, even the relationships of family members, the highest good of the natural world, can never inherit the kingdom of God (“for even the heathens love those who love them, and what good is that?”, and, “for with man, it is impossible, but with God [supernatural life and revelation], ALL things are possible.”)

Even with 200 Days Wages

Therefore, it is written of St. Phillip in the same story of five loaves and two fish: Lord, even with 200 days wages, we could not afford to give these families even a LITTLE food.

What is 200 except 2 x 10 x 10? And what is a day except a thousand years? And what is the wage of a day of natural goodness except simply a day of natural goodness, which can never approach God or please Him. But a day of natural goodness is also a thousand years of natural goodness.

And also, what are the wages, if even natural goodness, of a fallen man in this world? Is it not death? “For the wages of sin is death!” Therefore, the wages of 200 days is 200 thousand years of death, yet each of those days in that amount is a thousand years. Hence, the wages of 200 thousand years OF a thousand years of natural labor is simply death, even as the army of the second woe, which was 2 x 10 x 10 x 1000 x 1000, was the supernatural death of many in this world.

And also, what can we say about all the goodness and knowledge of this world alone? For, the totality of worldly religion, the army of man trying to find God on his own and to please him on his own power, is merely 2 x 10 x 1000, that is, heresies [2] of the world [10] confounded and multiplies innumerably [1000]. And even less powerful is the army of man in all purely worldly knowledge, that is, 10 x 1000, strictly worldly ideologies without regard to religion [10] multiplied innumerably [1000].

And in the end, none of these great armies' fruits, even if they call a TRUCE and not fight against one another, but COOPERATE to solve man's problems and find meaning in life, will ever purchase a single coin of merit in God's eyes, because only grace and revelation can do this. Rather, the fruits of such armies will only kill their victims spiritually, cutting them off from supernatural grace and revelation, which is the very thing these armies cast aside!

Hence, again, we read with St. Phillip to Jesus our Savior, "Lord, even with 200 days wages [2 [heresies] x 10 [of the world] x 10 [and purely worldly ideologies] x 1000 x 1000], we could not afford to give all these children of thy Father even a little food (no efforts of this world [10], be they religious [2, or heretical, since they reject God's supernatural involvement], much less pure efforts of the world [10], can ever bring us any ounce of supernatural goodness, no life from God, no truth that transcends our human minds, without which none of us can be saved. And therefore, only Jesus can fix this problem with His supernatural life, which, in the greatest form, is indeed the seven sacraments, as we have seen, the loaves and fishes of the Sacraments that Christ feeds us, the children of His Father, unto eternal life.)”