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But say,

To God more glory, more good-will to Men
Froni God, and over wrath grace shall abound.

if our Deliverer up to Heaven Must reascend, what will betide the few

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His faithful, left among the unfaithful herd,
The enemies of truth? Who then shall guide
His people, who defend ? Will they not deal
Worse with his followers than with him they dealt ?

Be sure they will, said the Angel ; but from Heaven
He to his own a Comforter will send,

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The promise of the Father, who shall dwell
His Spirit within them; and the law of faith,
Working through iove, upon their hearts shall write,
To guide them in all truth; and also arm

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With spiritual armour, able to resist
Satan's assaults, and quench his fiery darts ;
What man can do against them, not afraid,
Though to the death ; against such cruelties
With inward consolations recompensed,

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And oft supported so as shall amaze
Their proudest persecutors : for the Spirit,
Pour'd first on his Apostles, whom he sends
To evangelize the nations, then on all
Baptized, shall them with wondrous gifts enduo 500
To speak all tongues, and do all miracles,
As did their Lord before them. Thus they win
Great numbers of each nation to receive
With joy the tidings brought from Heaven : at length
Their ministry perform’d, and race well run, 505
Their doctrine and their story written left,
'They die ; but in their room, as they forewarn,
Wolves shall succeed for teachers, grievuus wolvos,
Who all the sacred mysteries of Heaven
To their own vile advantages shall turn

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Of lucre and ambition ; and the truth
With superstitions and traditions taint,
Left only in those written records pure,
Though not but by the Spirit understood

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Then they shall seek to avail themselves of names, Places, and titles, and with these to join

516 Secular power ; though feigning still to act By spiritual, to themselves appropriating The Spirit of God, promised alike and given To all believers; and, from that pretence, 620 Spiritual laws by carnal power shall force On every conscience ; laws which none shall find Left them inrellid, or what the Spirit within Shall on the heart engrave. What will they then But force the Spirit of Grace itself, and bind 525 His consort Liberty? What, but unbuild His living temples, built by faith to stand, Their own faith, not another's ? For, on carth, Who against faith and conscience can be heard Infallible ? yet many will presume:

530 Whence heavy persecution shall arise On all, who in the worship persevere Of spirit and truth; the rest, far greater part, Will deem in outward rites and specious forms Religion satisfied ; truth shall retire

535 Bestuck with slanderous darts, and works of faith Rarely be found : so shall the world go on, To good malignant, to bad nien benign; Under her own a eight groaning ; till the day Appear of respiration to the just,

540 And vengeance to the wicked, at return Of him so lately promised to thy aid, The Woman's Seed ; obscurely then foretold, Now ampler known thy Saviour and tl.y Lord; Last, in the clouds, from Heaven to be reveald 545 In glory of the Father, to dissolve Satan with his perverted world; then raise From the coniagrant mass, purged and refined, New Heavens, new Earth, ages of endless dato, Founded in righteousness, and peace, and love ; 650 To bring forth fruits, joy and eternal bliss.

lle ended; and thus Adamı last replied

How sool. hath thy prediction, Seer bless'd,
Measured this transient world, the race of time,
Till time stand fixd! Beyond is all abyss, 555
Eternity, whose end no eye can reach.
Greatly instructed I shall hence depart ;
Greatly in peace of thought; and have my

fill Of knowledge what this vessel can contain ; Beyond which was my folly to aspire.

KGO Henceforth I learn, that to obey is best, And love with fear the only God; to walk As in his presence; ever to observe His providence ; and on him sole depend, Merciful over all his works, with good

565 Still overcoming evil, and by sınal] Accomplishing great things, by things doem'd weak Subverting worldly strong, and worldiy wise By simply meek: that suffering for truth's sako Is fortitude to highest victory,

570 And, to the faithful, death the gate of life ; Taught this by his example, whom I now Acknowledge my Redeemer ever blesa’d.

To whom thus also the Angel last replied . This having learn'd, thou hast attain'd the sum 575 Of wisdom ; hope no higher, though all the stars Thou knew'st by name, and all the ethereal powers, All secrets of the deep, all Nature's works, Or works of God in Heaven, air, earth, or sea, And all the riches of this world enjoy'dst, 580 And all the rule, one empire ; only add Deeds to thy knowledge answerable ; add faith, Add virtue, patience, temperance; add love, By name to come call’d charity, the soul Of all the rest : then wilt thou not be loath 685 To leave this Paradise, but shalt possess A Paradise within thee, happier far.Let us descend now therefore from this top Of speculation ; for the hour precise Exacts our parting hence; and see! the guards, 598

By me encamp'd on yonder hill, expect
Their motion ; at whose iront a flaming sword,
In signal of remove, waves fiercely round:
Wo may no longer 'stay: go, waken Eve ;
Her also I with gentle dreams have calm’d 595
Portending good, and all her spirits composed
To meek submission : thou, at season fit,
Let her with thee partake what thou hast heard ;
Chioily what may concern her faith to know,
Tho great deliverance by her seed to come 600
(For by the Woman's seed) on all mankind.
That ye may live, which will be many days,
Both in one faith unanimous, though sad,
With cause, for evils past; yet much more cheer'd
With meditation on the happy erd.

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He ended, and they both descend the hill;
Descended, Adam to the bower, where Eve
Lay sieeping, ran before ; but found hier waked;
And thus with words not sad she him received :

Whence thou return'st, and whither went'st, I kuow, For God is also in sleep ; and dreams advise, 611 Which he hath sent propitious, some great good Presaging, since with sorrow and heart's distress Wearied I fell asleep : but now lead on; In me is no delay; with thee to go,

615 Is to stay here; without thee here to stay Is to go hence unwilling ; thou to me Art all things under Heaven, all places thou, Who for my wilful crine art banish'd hence. This further consolation yet secure

420 I carry hence; though all by me is lost, Such favour I unworthy am vouchsafed, By me the Promised Seed shall all restore.

So spake our mother Eve; and Adam heard Well pleased, but answer'd not : for uow too nig 625 The Archangel stood; and, from the other hill To their fix'd station, all in bright array 'The Cherubim descended on the ground

Gliding meteorous, as evening mist
Risen from a river o'er the marish glides, 630
And gathers ground fast at the labourer's heel
Homeward returning. High in front advanced,
The brandish'd sword of God before them blazed,
Fierce as a comet; which with torrid heat
And vapour, as the Libyan air adust,

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Began to parch that temperate clime ; whereat
In either hand the hastening Angel caught
Our lingering parents, and to the eastern gate
Led them direct, and down the cliffs first
To the subjected plain ; then disappeared. 640

They, looking back, all the eastern side beheld Of Paradise, so late their happy seat, Waved over by that Aaming brand ; the gato With dreadful faces throng'd, and fiery arms: Some natural tears they dropp'd, but wiped them soon ; The world was all before them, where to choose 646 Their place of rest, and Providence their guide : They, hand in hand, wille wandering steps and slow, Through Edon took their solitary way

THE END

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