« EelmineJätka »
Wherein past, present, future, he beholds,
Only begotten Son, seest thou what rage Transports our Adversary? whom no bounds Prescrib'd, no bars of Hell, nor all the chains Heap'd on him there, nor yet the main abyss Wide interrupt can hold; so bent he seems On desperate revenge, that shall redound Upon his own rebellious head. And now, Through all restraint broke loose, he wings
Not far off Heav'n, in the precincts of light,
And Man there plac'd, with purpose to assay 90
And Sp'rits, both them who stood and them
Freely they stood, who stood, and fell, who fell. Not free, what proof could they have giv'n sincere Of true allegiance, constant faith, or love, Where only what they needs must do appear'd,
Not what they would? what praise could they
What pleasure I from such obedience paid,
Their will, dispos'd by absolute decree
Or high foreknowledge; they themselves decreed
I form'd them free, and free they must remain,
Through Heav'n and Earth, so shall my glory'
But mercy first and last shall brightest shine. Thus while God spake, ambrosial fragrance fill'd All Heav'n, and in the blessed Sp'rits elect 136 Sense of new joy ineffable diffus'd.
Beyond compare the Son of God was seen
O Father, gracious was that word which clos'd
His end, and frustrate thine? Shall he fulfil
Draw after him the whole race of mankind,
For him, what for thy glory thou hast made?
My word, my wisdom, and effectual might, 170 All hast thou spoken as my thoughts are; all purpose hath decreed.
As my eternal purpose
Man shall not quite be lost, but sav'd who will, Yet not of will in him, but grace in me
Freely vouchsaf'd. Once more I will renew 175
Upheld by me, yet once more he shall stand
By me upheld, that he may know how frail 180
All his deliv'rance, and to none but me.
Elect above the rest; so is my will:
The rest shall hear me call, and oft be warn'd Their sinful state, and to appease betimes
Th' incensed Deity, while offer'd grace
Invites; for I will clear their senses dark,
pray, repent, and bring obedience due.
To pray'r, repentance, and obedience due, Though but endeavour'd with sincere intent, Mine ear shall not be slow, mine eye not shut. And I will place within them as a guide My umpire Conscience; whom if they will hear, Light after light well us'd they shall attain, 196 And, to the end persisting, safe arrive. This my long suffrance and my day of grace They who neglect and scorn, shall never taste; But hard be harden'd, blind be blinded more, That they may stumble on, and deeper fall: 201 And none but such from mercy I exclude. But yet all is not done: Man disobeying, Disloyal breaks his fealty, and sins Against the High Supremacy of Heav'n, Affecting Godhead, and so losing all, To expiate his treason hath nought left, But to destruction sacred and devote, He, with his whole posterity, must die; Die he or justice must; unless for him Some other able, and as willing, pay The rigid satisfaction, death for death. Say heav'nly Pow'rs, where shall we find such love?
Which of ye will be mortal to redeem
Man's mortal crime, and just th' unjust to save ? Dwells in all Heaven charity so dear? 216
He ask'd; but all the heav'nly choir stood mute, And silence was in Heav'n: on Man's behalf. Patron or intercessor none appear'd,