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By judges first, then under kings; of whom
The second, both for piety renown'd,
And puissant deeds, a promise shall receive,
Irrevocable, that his regal throne
For ever shall endure; the like shall sing
All prophecy, that of the royal stock
Of David, so I name this king, shall rise
A son, the woman's seed to thee foretold,
Foretold to Abraham, as in whom shall trust
All nations; and to kings foretold, of kings
The last, for of his reign shall be no end.
But first a long succession must ensue;
And his next son, for wealth and wisdom famed,
The clouded ark of God, till then in tents
Wandering, shall in a glorious temple enshrine.
Such follow him as shall be register'd,
Part good, part bad, of bad the longer scroll;
Whose foul idolatries, and other faults,
Heap'd to the popular sum, will so incense
God, as to leave them, and expose their land,
Their city, his temple, and his holy ark,
With all his sacred things, a scorn and prey
To that proud city, whose high walls thou saw'st
Left in confusion, Babylon thence callid.
There, in captivity, he lets them dwell
The space of seventy years; then brings them back,
Remembering mercy, and his covenant sworn
To David, establish'd as the days of Heaven.
Return'd from Babylon, by leave of kings,
Their lords, whom God disposed, the house of
They first re-edify; and for a while (God
In mean estate live moderate, till, grown
In wealth and multitude, factious they grow :
But first among the priests dissention springs,
Men who attend the altar, and should most
Endeavour peace : their strife pollution brings
Upon the temple itself; at last they seize
The sceptre, and regard not David's sons ;
Then lose it to a stranger, that the true
Anointed king Messiah might be born
Barr’d of his right: yet at his birth -a star,
Unseen before in Heaven, proclaims him come,
And guides the eastern sages, who enquire
His place, to offer incense, myrrh, and gold.
His place of birth solemn angel tells
To simple shepherds, keeping watch by night ;
They gladly thither haste, and, by a quire

The power

Of squadron'd angels hear his carol sung,
A virgin is his mother, but his sire

of the Most High; he shall ascend
The throne hereditary, and bound his reign
With earth’s wide bounds, his glory with the Heavens.”
He ceased, discerning Adam with such joy
Surcharged, as had, like grief, been dew'd in tears,
Without the vent of words, which these he breathed

O prophet of glad tidings, finisher
Of utmost hope ! now clear I understand [vain ;
What oft my steadiest thoughts have search'd in
Why our great expectation should be call'd
The seed of woman : Virgin Mother, hail,
High in the love of Heaven! yet from my

loins
Thou shalt proceed, and from thy womb the Son
Of God most High: so God with man unites.
Needs must the Serpent now his capital bruise
Expect, with mortal pain : say, where and when
Their fight, what stroke shall bruise the victor's heel?”

To whom thus Michael. “Dream not of their fight, As of a duel, or the local wounds Of head or heel : not therefore joins the Son Manhood to Godhead, with more strength to foil Thy enemy; nor 30 is overcome Satan, whose fall from Heaven, a deadlier bruise, Disabled not to give thee thy death's wound · Which he, who comes thy Saviour, shall re-cure, Not by destroying Satan, but his works, In thee and in thy seed : nor can this be, But by fulfilling that which thou didst want, Obedience to the law of God, imposed On penalty of death, and suffering death, The penalty to thy transgression due, And due to theirs, which out of thine will grow : So only can high justice rest appaid. The law of God exact he shall fulfil, Both by obedience and by love, though love Alone fulfil the law: thy punishment He shall endure, by coming, in the flesh, To a reproachful life, and cursed death, Proclaiming life to all, who shall believe In his redemption, and that his obedience, Imputed, becomes theirs by faith; his merits To save them, not their own, though legal works. For this he shall live hated, be blasphemed, Seiz'd on by force, judged, and to death condemn'd; A shameful and accursed, nail'd to the cross,

By his own nation; slain for bringing life :
But to the cross he nails thy enemies,
The law, that is against thee, and the sins
Of all mankind, with him there crucify'd,
Never to hurt them more, who rightly trust
In this his satisfaction; so he dies,
But soon revives; death over him no power
Shall long usurp : ere the third dawning light
Return, the stars of morn shall see him rise,
Out of his grave, fresh as the dawning light;
The ransom paid, which man from death redeems,
His death for man, as many as offer'd life
Neglect not, and the benefit embrace ,
By faith not void of works. This God-like act
Annuls thy doom, the death thou should'st have
In sin for ever lost from life; this act [died,
Shall bruise the head of Satan, crush his strength,
Defeating sin and death, his two main arms,
And fix far deeper in his head their stings,
Than temporal death shall bruise the victor's heel,
Or theirs whom he redeems; a death-like sleep,
A gentle wafting to immortal life.
Nor, after resurrection, shall he stay.
Longer on earth than, certain times, to appear
To his disciples, men who in his life
Still follow'd him; to them shall leave in charge
To teach all nations, what of him they learn'd,
And his salvation; them who shall believe
Baptizing in the profluent stream, the sign
Of washing them from guilt of sin to life,
Pure and in mind prepared, if so befal,
For death, like that which the Redeemer died.
All nations they shall teach; for, from that day,
Not only to the sons of Abraham's loins
Salvation shall be preach'd, but to the sons
Of Abraham's faith, where-ever through the world ;
So, in his seed, all nations shall be bless’d,
Then to the Heaven of Heavens he shall ascend,
With victory, triumphing through the air,
Over his foes and thine; there shall surprise
The Serpent, prince of air, and drag in chains
Through all his realm, & there confounded leave:
Then enter into glory, and resume
His seat at God's right hand, exalted high,
Above all names in Heaven; & thence shall come,
When this world's dissolution shall be ripe,
With glory & power, to judge both quick & dead;

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