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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; and at length they come,
Conducted by his Angel, to the land
Promised to Abraham and his seed. The rest
Were long to tell; how many battles fought;
How many kings destroy'd ; and kingdoms won;
Or how the sun shall in mid Heaven stand still
A day entire, and night's due course adjourn,
Man's voice commanding, Sun, in Gibeon stand,
And thou, Moon, in the vale of Aialon,
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
Just Abraham and his seed; now first I find
Mine eyes true-opening, and my heart much eased;
Erewhile perplex'd with thoughts, wbat would become
Of me and all mankind: but now I see
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 balls and goats, they may conclude
Some blood more precious must be paid for man;
Just for unjust; that in such rigbteousness
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 mortal 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 Capaan lead;
But Joshua, whom the Gentiles Jesus call,
His name and office bearing, who sball quell
The Adversary Serpent, and bring back
Through the world's wilderness long-wander'd man
Safe to eternal Paradise of rest.
Meanwbile 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
By judges first, then under kings; of whom
The second, both for piety renown'd
And puissant deeds, a promise shall receive
Irrevocable, that bis 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 bim, 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 call’d. There in captivity he lets them dwell The space of seventy years; then brings them back, Remembering mercy, and his covenant sworn To David, stablish'd as the days of Heaven. Return'd from Babylou by leave of kings Their lords, whom God disposed, the house of God They first reedify; and for awhile In mean estate live moderate ; till, grown In wealth and multitude, factious they grow; But first among the priests dissension 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 inquire

His place, to offer incense, myrrh, and gold :
His place of birth a solemn Angel tells
To simple shepherds, keeping watch by night;
They gladly thither haste, and by a quire
Of squadron’d Angels hear his carol sung.
A virgin is his mother, but his sire
The power 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 breath'd :

O prophet of glad tidings, finisher Of utmost hope ! now clear I understand What oft my steadiest thoughts have search’d in vain; 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 so is overcome Satan, whose fall from Heaven, a deadlier bruise, Disabled, not to give thee thy death's wound : Which he, who comes tby Saviour, shall recure, 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 deatb; 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,
Seized 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 crucified,
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,
Thy 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 godlike act
Annuls thy doom, the death thou shouldst have died,
In sin for ever lost from life; this act
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

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