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From reason,

Twin'd, and from her hath no dividual being :
Reason in man obscured, or not obey'd,
Immediately inordinate desires,
And upstart passions, catch the government

and to servitude reduce
Man, till then free. Therefore, since he permits,
Within himself, unworthy powers to reign
Over free reason, God, in judgment just,
Subjects him, from without, to violent lords :
Who oft, as undeservedly, inthrall
His outward freedom. Tyranny must be,
Though to the tyrant thereby no excuse,
Yet sometimes nations will decline so low.
From virtue, which is reason, that no wrong,
But justice, and some fatal curse annex’d,
Deprives them of their outward liberty,
Their inward loss. Witness the irreverent son
Of him who built the ark; who, for the shame
Done to his father, heard this heavy curse,
“ Servant of servants," on his vicious race.
Thus will this latter, as the former world,
Still tend from bad to worse; till God, at last,
Wearied with their iniquities, withdraw
His presence from among them, and avert
His holy eyes; resolving, from thenceforth
To leave them to their own polluted ways;
And one peculiar nation to select
From all the rest, of whom to be invoked ;
A nation, from one faithful man to spring :
Him, on this side Euphrates yet residing,
Bred up in idol-worship.
Canst thou believe? should be so stupid grown,
While yet the patriarch lived, who 'scap'd the
As to forsake the living God, and fall [flood,
To worship their own work, in wood and stone,
For gods! Yet him God the Most High vouch-
To call, by vision, from his father's house, [safes
His kindred, and false gods, into a land
Which he will show him, & from him will raise
A mighty nation, and upon him shower
His benediction so, that in his seed
All nations shall be bless'd : he straight obeys,
Not knowing to what land, yet firm believes.
I see him, but thou canst not, with what faith
He leaves his gods, his friends, & native soil,
Ur of Chaldea; passing now the ford
To Haran, after him a cumbrous train

ó that men,

Of herds and flocks, and numerous servitude;
Not wandering poor, but trusting all his wealth
With God, who calld him, in a land unknown.
Canaan he now attains; see his tents
Pitch'd about Sechem, and the neighb’ring plain
Of Moreb; there, by promise, he receives
Gift to his progeny of all that land,
From Hamath northward to the desert south,
Things by their names I call, though yet unnamed,
From Hermon east to the great western sea ;
Mount Hermon, yonder sea, each place behold
In prospect, as I point them; on the shore
Mount Carmel; here the double-founted stream,
Jordan, true limit eastward ; but his sons
Shall dwell to Senir, that long ridge of hills.
This ponder; that all nations of the earth
Shall in his seed be blessed ; by that seed
Is meant thy great Deliverer, who shall bruise
The serpent's head; whereof to thee anon
Plainlier shall be reveal’d. This patriarch bless'd,
Whom faithful Abraham due time shall call,
A son, and of his son a grandchild leaves,
Like him in faith, in wisdom, and renown :
The grandchild, with twelve sons increased, departs
From Canaan, to a land hereafter call'd
Egypt, divided by the river Nile ;
See where it flows, disgorging at seven mouths
Into the sea : to sojourn in that land
He comes, invited by a younger son
In time of dearth ; a son, whose worthy deeds
Raise him to be the second in that realm
Of Pharaoh ; there he dies, & leaves his race
Growing into a nation; and now grown
Suspected to a sequent king, who seeks
To stop their overgrowth, as inmate guests (slaves,
Too numerous; whence of guests he makes them
Inhospitably, and kills their infant males :
Till by two brethren, those two brethren call
Moses and Aaron, sent from God, to claim
His people from enthralment, they return
With glory & spoil, back to their promised land.
But first the lawless tyrant, who denies
To know their God, or message to regard,
Must be compell’d, by signs & judgments dire;
To blood unshed the rivers must be turn'd;
Frogs lice, and flies, must all his palace fill,
With loathed intrusion, and fill all the land ;

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His cattle must of rot and murrain die;
Botches and blains must all his flesh emboss,
And all his people ; thunder mix'd with hail,
Hail mix'd with fire, must rend the Egyptian sky,
And wheel on the earth, devouring where it rolls;
What it devours not, herb, or fruit, or grain,
A darksome cloud of locusts, swarming down,
Must eat, & on the ground leave nothing green:
Darkness must overshadow all his bounds,
Palpable darkness, and blot out three days;
Last, with one midnight stroke, all the first born
Of Egypt must lie dead. Thus, with ten wounds,
The river-dragon tamed, at length submits
To let his sojourners depart, and oft
Humbles his stubborn heart, but still, as ice
More harden'd after thaw ; till, in his rage,
Pursuing whom he late dismiss'd, the sea
Swallows him with his host; but them lets pass,
As on dry land, between two crystal walls,
Awed by the rod of Moses so to stand
Divided, till his rescued gain their shore ;
Such wondrous power God to his saint will lend,
Though present in his Angel; who shall go
Before them in a cloud, and pillar of fire,
By day a cloud, by night a pillar of fire,
To guide them in their journey, and remove
Behind them, while the obdurate king pursues :
All night he will pursue; but his approach
Darkness defends between, till morning watch :
Then through the fiery pillar and the cloud
God looking forth, will trouble all his host,
And craze their chariot-wheels : when, by command,
Moses once more his potent rod extends
Over the sea; the sea his rod obeys.
On their embattled ranks the waves return,
And overwhelm their war. The race elect,
Safe towards Canaan, from the shore advance,
Through the wild desert; not the readiest way,
Lest entering on the Canaanite alarmed,
War terrify them, inexpert, and fear
Return them back to Egypt, choosing rather
Inglorious life, with servitude; for life,
To noble and ignoble, is more sweet
Untrain'd in arms, where rashness leads not on.
This also shall they gain, by their delay
In the wide wilderness; there they shall found
Their government, & their great senate choose

Through the twelve tribes, to rule by laws ordain'd:
God from the mount of Sinai, whose gray top
Shall tremble, he descending, will himself
In thunder, lightning, & loud trumpets' sound,
Ordain them laws; part such as appertain
To civil justice, part religious rites
Of sacrifice, informing them, by types
And shadows, of that destined Seed to bruise
The Serpent; by what means he shall achieve
Mankind's deliverance. But the voice of God
To mortal ear is dreadful : they beseech
That Moses might report to them his will,
And terror cease : he grants what they besought,
Instructed that to God is no access
Without mediator ; whose high office now
Moses in figure bears, to introduce
One greater, of whose day he shall foretel,
And all the prophets, in their age, the times
Of great Messiah shall sing. Thus laws & rites,
Establish’d; such delight hath God in men
Obedient to his will, that he vouchsafes
Among them to set up his tabernacle,
The Holy One with mortal men to dwell :
By his prescript, a sanctuary is framed
Of cedar, overlaid with gold; therein
An ark, and in the ark his testimony,
The records of his covenant, over these
A mercy-seat of gold, between the wings
Of two bright Cherubim; before him burn
Seven lamps, as in a zodiac, representing
The heavenly fires ; over the tent a cloud
Shall rest by day, a fiery gleam by night,
Save when they journey; & at length they come,
Conducted by his Angel, to the land
Promised to Abraham & his seed. The rest
Were long to tell; how many battles fought,
How many kings destroy'd, & kingdoms won,
Or how the sun shall, in mid Heaven, stand still
A day entire, & night's due course adjourn,
Man's voice commanding, 'Sun, in Gibeon stand,
And thou moon, in the vale of Ajalon,'
Till Israel overcome : so call the third
From Abraham, son of Isaac, and from him
His whole descent, who thus shall Canaan win.”

Here Adam interposed. “O sent from Heaven,
Enlightener of my darkness, gracious things
Thou hast reveal'd; those chiefly which concern

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Just Abraham and his seed : now first I find
Mine eyes true opening, & my heart much eased
Erewhile perplex'd with thoughts, what would be-
Of me and all mankind : but now I see [come
His day, in whom all nations shall be bless'd ;
Favour unmerited by me, who sought
Forbidden knowledge, by forbidden means.
This yet I apprehend not; why to those,
Among whom God will deign to dwell on earth,
So many and so various laws are given ;
So many laws argue so many sins
Among them; how can God with such reside ?”

To whom thus Michael. “ Doubt not but that sin
Will reign among them, as of thee begot;
And therefore was law given them, to evince
Their natural pravity, by stirring up
Sin against law to fight; that when they see
Law can discover sin, but not remove,
Save by those shadowy expiations weak,
The blood of bulls and goats, they may conclude,
Some blood more precious must be paid for man,
Just for unjust; that in such righteousness,
To them by faith imputed, they may find
Justification towards God, and peace
Of conscience, which the law by ceremonies
Cannot appease ; nor man the moral part
Perform, and, not performing, cannot live.
So law appears imperfect, and but given
With purpose to resign them, in full time,
Up to a better covenant, disciplined
From shadowy types to truth, from flesh to spirit,
From imposition of strict laws, to free
Acceptance of large grace, from servile fear
To filial, works of law to works of faith.
And therefore shall not Moses, though of God
Highly beloved, being but the minister
Of law, his people into Canaan lead ;
But Joshua, whom the Gentiles Jesus call,
His name and office bearing, who shall quell
The adversary serpent, and bring back,
Through the world's wilderness, long wander'd man,
Safe to eternal Paradise of rest.
Meanwhile they, in their earthly Canaan placed,
Long time shall dwell, and prosper; but when sins
National interrupt their public peace,
Provoking God to raise them enemies ;
From whom as oft he saves them, penitent,

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