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On the Creation of the Universe: The Order of the Works of God

Lining up another one of the Elevations on the Mysteries by Bossuet, III, 7:

God made the basis of his work.  God decorated it, God put the finishing touch, God rested.

When he made the basis of his work, that is to say in confusion the heavens and the earth, the air and the waters, it was not said that he had spoken.  When he began to decorate the world, it is thus that he made his word appear: God said: Let there be light, and the light was.  And so on for the rest.

 The word of God, it is his wisdom; and wisdom begins to appear with order, distinction and beauty; the creation of the basis pertains more to power.

And this wisdom, from where does it begin, if not by the light, which of all bodily natures was not the first to carry his impression? Wisdom is the light of spirits, ignorance is compared to darkness.  Without light, all is deformed, all is confused: it is she who embellished the beginning and differentiates objects by her outbreak which she diffuses and which, to say so, she paints and gilds.  May the light appear, the most beautiful of material creatures, who embellishes all the others; and note that your author is all light in himself: And art clothed with light as with a garment: amictus lumine sicut vestimento: that the light which he is clothed with is inaccessible in herself: but that she scatters forth, that it pleases him, on the intelligent natures, and dims to accommodate weak eyes.  That he is beautiful and beautifying; that he is breaking out and bubbling up, luminous, and by her light obscure and impenetrable, known and unknown at the same time! Appear, now one time, beautiful light, and make us see that light and intelligence foresees and directs all the works of God.  Eternal light, I adore you: I open to your rays my blind eyes; I open and lower at the same time, not daring to draw away from my view of you, from fear of falling into error and darkness; neither also to stop too much on this infinite outbreak, from fear that to dare look at your majesty, I might not be dazzled by your glory.

It is to the favour of your light that I see the light to be born in the world; and that following your works, I see you grow perfection little by little; until that which you put a happy end worthy of you, in creating man, the spectator and admirer of all your works, and the only one who can profit from such marvels.  After this, only rest remains to you, to show that your work is perfect and that there is nothing else to add?

Blessed be you, o Lord, in the first day of the universe, where creation appeared in light, and all together the symbol of the day which you wanted to sanctify in the New Testament which is Sunday: where the corporal light shined all together in this word: that the light was made, and the spiritual light in the resurrection of the Saviour and in the descent of the Holy Spirit, who began to give birth in the world to the light of apostolic preaching.

May this be our first day; that this day fill us up with joy; may it be for us a day of rejoicing and sanctification, where we say with David: This is the day the Lord has made, we will rejoice and be glad in it.  This is the day of the Trinity to be adored: the Father appeared by the creation of the light; the Son by his resurrection: and the Holy Spirit by his descent.  O holy day, o happy day! May you always be the true Sunday, the true day of the Lord, by our faithful observance, as you are by the holiness of your institution.

Here is our first say.  But let us not forget the sixth where man was created.  Will we not rejoice in this day of our creation? It soon became unhappy and maybe the day of our fall, at least it is certain that the day of our fall followed it shortly.  But let us admire the mystery; the day where the first man, the first Adam was created, is the same where the new man, the new Adam died on the Cross.  It is thus for the Church a day of fasting and mourning in all the following generations; a day which is followed by the sad repose of Jesus Christ in the tomb, and which is nevertheless full of consolation for the hope of future resurrection.

O man! See in the sixth day your loss happily restored by the death of your Saviour.  Renew in this day the memory of your creation and the admirable figure of the formation of the Church, by that of Eve our mother and the mother of all living.

O Lord! Give me the grace in celebrating the memory of the six days of your work, to arrive to your rest in a perfect acquiescence to your will; and by this rest to return to my origin, in rising with you, and in clothing me in your light and your glory.


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