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With pity, violated not their bliss.
About the new-arriv'd, in multitudes
Th' etherial people ran, to hear and know
How all befel; they towards the throne supreme.
Accountable made haste to make appear
With righteous plea their utmost vigilance.
And easily approved ; when the most high
Eternal Father, from his secret cloud:
Amidst, in thunder utter'd thus his voice:
Assembled angels, and ye pow'rs return'd
From unsuccessful charge, be not dismay'd.
Nor troubled at these tidings from the earth,
Which your sincerest care could not prevent.
Foretold so lately what would come to pass.
When first this tempter cross'd the gulf from hell.
I told ye then he should prevail and speed
On his bad errand, man should be seduc'd
And flatter'd out of all, believing lies
Against his Maker; no decree of mine
Concurring to necessitate his fall,
Or touch with lightest moment of impulse
His free will, to her own inclining left
In even scale. But fallen he is, and now
What rests, but that the mortal sentence pass
On his transgression, death denounced that day?
Which he presumes already vain and void,
Because not yet inflicted, as he fear'd,
By some immediate stroke; but soon shall find
Forbearance no acquittance, ere day end
Justice shall not return as bounty scorned.
But whom send I to judge them? whom but thoe
Vicegerent Son? to thee I have transferr'd
All judgment whether, in heav'n, or earth, or hell.
Easy it may be seen that I intend
Mercy colleague with justice, sending thee
Man's friend, his mediator, his design'd
Both ransom and redeemer voluntary.
And destin'd Man himself to judge man fall'n.
So spake the Father, and unfolding bright Toward the right hand his glory, on the Son Blaz'd forth unclouded deity; he full Resplendent all his Father manifest Express'd, and thus divinely answer'd mild:
Father eternal, thine is to decree, Mine both in heav'n and earth, to do thy will Supreme, that thou in me thy Son belov'd Mayst ever rest well pleas'd. I go to judge On earth these thy transgressors, but thou know'st. Whoever judg'd, the worst on me must light, When time shall be, for so I undertook Before thee; and not repenting, this obtain Of right, that I may mitigate their doom On me deriv'd, yet I shall temper so Justice with mercy, as may illustrate most Them fully satisfied, and thee appease. Attendance none shall need, nor train, where n the Are to behold the judgment, but the jug'd, Those two; the third best absent is condemned. Convict by flight, and rebel to all law: Conviction to the serpent none belongs.
Thus saying from his radiant seat he rose Of high collateral glory: him thrones and powers, Princedoms, and dominations ministrant accompanied to heav'n gate, from whence Eden and all the coast in prospect lay. Down he descended straight; the speed of gods Time counts not, tho' with swiftest minutes wmy d. Now was the sun in western cadence low From noon, and gentle airs due at their hour To fan the earth now wak'd, and usher in The evening cool, when he from wrath more cool Came the mild judge and intercessor both To sentence man: the voice of God they heard Now walking in the garden, by soft winds Brought to their ears, while day declined ; they heard, And from his presence hid themselves among The thickest trees, both man and wife, till God
Approaching, thus to Adam called aloud:
Where art thou Adam, wont with joy to meet
My coming seen far off? I miss thee here,
Not pleas'd, thus entertain'd with solitude,
Where obvious duty erewhile appeared unsought:
Or come I less conspicuous, or what change
Absents thee, or what chance detain? Come forth!
He came, and with him Eve, more loath, though
To offend, discount'nanc'd both, and discompos'd;
Love was not in their looks, either to God
Or to each other, but apparent guilt,
And shame, and perturbation, and despair,
Anger, and obstinacy, and hate, and guile.
Whence Adam, falt'ring long, thus answer'd brief,
I heard thee in the garden, and of thy voice
Afraid, being naked, hid myself. To whom
The gracious judge, without revile reply'd:
My voice thou oft hast heard, and hast not fear'd.
But still rejoic'd; how is it now become
So dreadful to thee? that thou art naked, who
Hath told thee? hast thou eaten of the tree,
Whereof I gave thee charge thou shouldst not cat i
To whom thus Adam sore beset replied:
0 heav'n! in evil strait this day I stand
Before my judge, either to undergo
Myself the total crime, or to accuse
My other self, the partner of my life;
Whose failing, while her faith to me remains,
I should conceal, and not expose to blame
By my complaint; but strict necessity
Subdues me, and calamitous constraint.
Lest on my head both sin and punishment,
However insupportable, be all
Devolv'd: though should I hold my peace, yet thou
Wouldst easily detect what I conceal.
This woman, whom thou mad'st to be my help.
And gav'st me as thy perfect gift, so good,
So fit, so acceptable, so divine,
That from her hand I could suspect no ill
And what she did, whatever in itself,
Her doing seem'd to justify the deed;
She gave me of the tree, and I did eat.
To whom the sov'reign Presence thus reply'd:
Was she thy God, that her thou didst obey
Before his voice, or was she made thy guide
Superior, or but equal, that to her
Thou didst thy manhood, and the place
Wherein God set thee above her made of thee,
And for thee, whose perfection far excelled
Hers in real dignity? Adorn'd
She was indeed, and lovely to attract
Thy love, not thy subjection; and her gifts
were such as under government well seem'd,
Unseemly to bear rule, which was thy part
And person hadst thou known thyself aright.
So having said, he thus to Eve in few:
Say, woman, what is this which thou hast done?
To whom sad Eve with shame nigh overwhelmed,
Confessing soon, yet not before her judge
Bold or loquacious, thus abash'd reply'd:
The serpent me beguil'd and I did eat.
Which when the Lord God heard, without delay To judgment he proceeded on th' accused Serpent though brute, unable to transfer The guilt on him who made him instrument Of mischief, and polluted from the end Of his creation: justly then accurs'd. As vitiated in nature; more to know Concerned not man (since he no further knew) Nor altered his offence; yet God at last To Satan first in sin his doom apply'd, Though in mysterious terms, judged as then best: And on the serpent thus his curse let fall: Because thou hast done this, thou art accursed Above all cattle, each beast of the field; Upon thy belly groveling thou shalt go, And dust shall eat all the days of thy life.
Between thee and the woman, I will put
Enmity, and between thine and her seed;
Her seed shall bruise thy head, thou bruise his heel
So spake this oracle, then verify'd
When Jesus son of Mary, second Eve,
Saw Satan fall like lightning down from henvn.
Prince of the air; then rising from his grave
Spoil'd principalities and pow'rs, triumph'd
In open show, and with ascension bright,
Captivity led captive through the air,
The realm itself of Satan long usurp'd,
Whom he shall tread at last under our feet;
Ev'n he who now foretold his fatal bruise,
And to the woman thus his sentence turn'd:
Thy sorrow I will greatly multiply
By thy conception; children thou shalt bring
In sorrow forth; and to thy husband's will
'i hine si all submit; he over thee shall rule.
On Adam last thus judgment he pronounc'd:
Because thou hast hearken'd to the voice of thy wile
And eaten of the tree, concerning which
I charged thee saying, Thou shalt not eat thereof:
Cursed is the ground for thy sake; thou in sorrow
Shalt eat thereof all the days of thy life;
Thorns also and thistles it shall bring thee forth
Unbid; and thou shalt eat th' herb of the field.
In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread,
Till thou return unto the ground; for thou
Out of the ground wast taken, know thy birth,
For dust thou art, and shalt to dust return.
So judg'd he man, both judge and saviour sent, And th' instant stroke of death denounced that day Remov'd far off: then pitying how they stood Before him naked to the air, that now Must suffer change, disdain'd not to begin Thenceforth the form of servant to assume. As when he wash'd his servants' feet, so now, As father of his family he clad Their nakedness with skins of beasts, or slain.