Paradise Found: Milton's Messiah and the Argument of Weakness in Paradise Regain'd
This chapter examines how a Passion narrative underlies the temptation narrative of Milton's Paradise Regain'd. The main purpose of the intricate dialectical debates conducted across the brief epic between Satan and the Son is to interrogate the nature of divine kingship and Messianic heroism and to confirm that the qualities of altruistic endurance and patience communicate the substance of kingly values. Learned prolepses of the atonement irradiate the poetic narrative and Miltonic irony continues to be very much in play. Even before the temptations have properly begun, Milton's Jesus is fully aware of his redeeming office and, in myriad ways, the narrative delineates the disparity between Satan's limited, worldly idea of kingship and the Messianic reality of Jesus as the suffering servant-king.
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