The Nature of Milton's Son and his Justification of Men's Ways to God: Things Indifferent?
This chapter examines Milton's theological and poetic treatment of the Son of God and the work of salvation and challenges the prevailing trend in Milton studies that Milton's theology adheres to Arian, Socinian, or psilanthropic tenets. De Doctrina Christiana and Milton's poetry predicate human restoration upon divine grace and do not regard the doctrine of redemption as a ‘thing indifferent’. Milton's Christology and soteriology cannot be reconciled with Arianism in either a historical or a technical sense. Christology necessarily entails soteriology and Milton's understanding of the incarnate Son as theanthropos or ‘God-man’ establishes the importance of Christ's mediatorial role. Milton's conception of the pernicious effects of human sin invalidates an exemplarist, subjective atonement and depends instead upon a unique, objective atonement. The major poetry and the treatise rigorously account for the redemption along largely orthodox lines, adopting conventional soteriological metaphors of satisfaction, ransom, sacrifice, and penalty and espousing the reconciliation of divine justice and mercy.
Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.