The seventh day and the ideology of six days

God completed his work of creation after six days, but the story does not stop there. If we understand the account of creation rightly the six days will point us to the seventh day, and in truth creation would be incomplete without the seventh day.

Nevertheless, it is tempting to stop at the sixth day, as though the seventh day were an optional add-on. We might say that the modern world has succumbed to this temptation. We are not the first to do so.

The six days without the seventh is like the 24/7 world, a world without God. The ideology of six days, if it believes in God at all, declares that God gave the world to man to do as he pleases with it.

We see this attitude in those who would say, “It is my property. I can do with it as I please. If I choose to destroy it, that is no affair of yours.”

The same attitude declares, “It is my body. I can do whatever I choose with it, even to the point of destroying the child in the womb, or mutilating the sexual organs to appear as member of the opposite sex.”

This attitude has produced the degradation of the environment. The new paganism reacts to this degradation of the environment with nature worship and wrongly blames Christianity for subordinating nature to God, the Creator. I have already addressed this error. Besides being rather selective, the new paganism does not offer a real solution. The new paganism would enslave man to the caprices of nature and the caprices of human passion. The new paganism remains closed within the six days of creation.

There is perhaps an intimation of the ideology of the six days found in a famous number in the Book of Revelation. The number 666, which the Book of Revelation says is the number of a man, repeats the number six thrice by multiplying it tenfold and then a hundredfold. (Rev 13:18) Symbolically it appears as the number of man without God, man who proclaims himself as god, creation stopped on the sixth day, devoid of any purpose or meaning besides that which man himself imposes. It is the number of idolatry, whether idolatry of man or idolatry of nature.

This man made world of idolatry is also a world without rest. Man makes himself to be a god and so must frantically rule the world he has made.  This is the pattern of modern history. Man, seeking to take control of nature by the very limited means of human science and technology makes the world more complex. This in turn brings forth complex problems that were not foreseen, but which must be controlled by the same means, producing even greater complexity. It seems that the only choice is to keep up with the frantic pace of “progress” and the only solution to the ever more complex problems is more “progress”. Meanwhile the world becomes increasingly inhuman and inhospitable.

Having plunged himself into this frantic world of his own making, man declares “Arbeit macht frei” – that was the motto over the entrance to Auschwitz – it means “work will set you free”. That same spirit – a demonic spirit – has given us the 24/7 world without rest and without worship. It has also give us Amazon Fulfillment Centers and the “Gig Economy”.

We can well ask if we are near the point in which it will no longer be allowed to buy or sell without receiving the mark of the beast on forehead (believing the ideology) or hand (conforming to the ideology in practice)? (Rev 13:16-17)

Truly, keeping the Lord’s Day holy will be key to resisting the dominion of the beast. That means, however, that we need to consider the meaning of the seventh day.

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Fr. Joseph Levine graduated from Thomas Aquinas College and after a long journey was ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Baker, Oregon. He currently serves as pastor of St. Peter Catholic Church in The Dalles on the Columbia River.