As I mentioned in a previous post the encounter of Rabbi Sha’ul of Tarsus (St Paul) with a radiant light and then the voice of the Lord speaking to him in Hebrew parallels Moshe Rabbeinu (Moses)’s encounter of the burning but not consumed bush and the voice of the Lord speaking to him from its midst in Hebrew. The burning bush and the voice represents the pure and immaculate Virgin (manifesting out of Eternity) and thus as Moses' encounter with God through the burning bush is a Marian encounter so is Paul's radiant light and voice the light of the pure and immaculate Virgin (manifesting out of Eternity) through which he encounters the crucified Lord.
The voice or bat kol in Hebrew and phonen in Greek is feminine in both Hebrew and Greek. This voice that one sees rather than hears is also mentioned in Apocalypse 1:12 "in the midst" of the seven-branched Menorah of the heavenly Temple. These three encounters of the voice that one sees (and blinds St Paul) is in a sense the Marian mystery and light of the Incarnation manifesting out of Eternity into time in different but similar manifestations. The concept of “in the midst” alludes to the womb of the Mystical Lady. This feminine voice spoke from out of the midst of the cherubim of the Ark of the Covenant in Exodus 25:22. This voice is described also as being seven voices that are seen or perceived.
Are the seven voices and the seven lights of the menorah alluding to the future 7 Marian dogmas which the church on earth will proclaim which are linked to the seven lower Sefirot of the Shekhinah? These seven Marian dogmas may be linked to the seven Church ages as taught by the Jesuit scholar and mystic the Venerable Bartholomew Holzhauser (1613-1658).
The first Church age is represented by Ephesus and is a time of sowing seed (seminativus) and may be linked to Our Lady as the Theotokos or God bearer (Mother of God) and was the age when Mary herself remained on earth. This is the age of shiflut (lowliness). After her assumption into Heaven, Nero and the rise of the age of persecutions and the irrigation of the Church by the blood of the martyrs (irrigativus) symbolised by the Church of Smyrna began. This is the age where Our Lady was present mystically as Perpetual Virgin and we saw the martyrdom of many virgin saints and virginity became highly prized among Christians. This is the age of the foundations (yesod) in emet (truth) and purity (tahor).
The third Church age symbolised by Pergamum and is the time of illumination (illuminativus) and lasts from the time of Pope Sylvester to Pope Leo III. It is a time of great doctrinal development through the fathers of the Church and Councils. This is the Marian age of the Immaculate Conception and of temimut (sincerity). The fourth age of the Church is symbolised by Thyatira and is a time of comparative peace or tranquillity (pacifitcus) from Pope Leo III to Pope Leo X. This is the time of Christendom. This is the Marian age of the Assumption in which the church is victorious and triumphant in Europe. It is a time of netzach (overcoming victory and patient endurance) and bitachon (boldness/confidence).
The fifth age of the Church in which we live is symbolised by Sardis and is a period of affliction and purgation (afflictionis et purgatives) from Leo X until the rise of the future Great Monarch Henry and a Great Pope. This is the Marian Age of the Co-redemptrix. This Age concludes with the hidden (in the Eucharist) or intermediate coming of Christ as a thief in the Night and a time of Divine Mercy (rachamim). This is followed by the sixth Church age symbolised by Philadelpia (brotherly love) and is a time of consolation (consolationis) from the time of the Great Monarch and Pope until the birth of the final antichrist (fourth) called Gog. This will be the Marian Age of the Mediatrix of Graces. It is an era of strength and divine power (gevurah). This will be the time when all the promises to the Jewish people will be fulfilled and the Divine Will shall reign on earth as it is in Heaven, within history. This is also the era of Peace promised at Fatima and the time of the Eucharistic Reign of Jesus over the whole earth
The last and seventh age of the Church is symbolised by Laodicea and is a time of desolation (desolationis) from the birth of the final antichrist until the end of the world. This the Marian age of Advocate as the Christians of that time will need strong help from the Virgin Mary. It will be a time in which man will need the loving kindness of the Father (chesed). It is at the end of this age that Jesus comes again in his final coming to usher in the end of the world.
Thus we perceive in a hidden manner in the opening of the Apocalypse of St. John the Beloved the hidden Marian voice and context. Are the seven shofars (ram’s horn or trumpet) blasts in the Apocalypse also linked to these seven voices? Will we see the final three Marian dogma’s proclaimed in this time of Sardis? If we reflect on the many other passages of Scripture that mention this created Voice of God we will perceive the deeper Marian levels of comprehending the Word of God.