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MAN'S transgression known, the guardian angels forsake Paradise, and return up to Heaven to approve their vigilance, and are approved, God declaring that the entrance of Satan could not be by them prevented. He sends his Son to judge the transgressors, who descends and gives sentence accordingly; then in pity clothes them both, and reascends.
Sin and Death sitting till then at the gates of Hell, by wondrous sympathy feeling the success of Satan in this new world, and the sin by man there committed, resolves to sit no longer confined in Hell, but to follow Satan their sire up to the place of man to make the way easier from Hell to this world to and fro, they pave a broad high-way or bridge over Chaos, according to the track that Satan first made; then preparing for Earth, they meet him proud of his success, returning to Hell; their mutual gratulation. Satan arrives at Pandemonium, in full assembly relates with boasting his success against man instead of applause is entertained with a general hiss by all his audience, transformed with himself also suddenly into serpents, according to his doom given in Paradise; then deluded with a show of the forbidden tree springing up before them, they greedily reaching to take of the fruit, chew dust and bitter ashes. The proceedings of Sin and Death; God foretels the final victory of his Son over them, and the renewing of all things: but for the present commands his angels to make several alterations in the Heavens and elements. Adam more and more perceiving his fallen condition heavily bewails, rejects the condolement of Eve: she persists, and at length appeases him: then to evade the curse likely to fall on their offspring, proposes to Adam violent ways, which he approves not, but conceiving better hope, puts her in mind of the late promise made them, that her seed should be revenged on the serpent, and exhorts her with him to seek peace of the offended. Deity, by repentance and supplication.
MEANWHILE the heinous and despiteful act
Was known in heav'n; for what can 'scape the eye
For still they knew, and ought to have still remem ber'd
The high injunction not to taste that fruit,
With pity, violated not their bliss.
Assembled angels, and ye pow'rs return'd
Mercy colleague with justice, sending thee
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 satisfy'd, and thee appease. Attendance none shall need, nor train, where nɔne Are to behold the judgment, but the jug'd, Those two; the third best absent is condemn'd, Convict by flight, and rebel to all law: Conviction to the serpent none belongs.
Thus saying from his radiant seat he rose
Down he descended straight; the speed of gods