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Milton’s paraphrase of Psalm 2

May 19, 2009

WHy do the Gentiles tumult, and the Nations
Muse a vain thing, the Kings of th’ earth upstand
With power, and Princes in their Congregations
Lay deep their plots together through each Land,
Against the Lord and his Messiah dear.
Let us break off, say they, by strength of hand
Their bonds, and cast from us, no more to wear,
Their twisted cords: he who in Heaven doth dwell
Shall laugh, the Lord shall scoff them, then severe
Speak to them in his wrath, and in his fell
And fierce ire trouble them; but I saith hee
Anointed have my King (though ye rebell)
On Sion my holi’ hill. A firm decree
I will declare; the Lord to me hath say’d
Thou art my Son I have begotten thee
This day; ask of me, and the grant is made;
As thy possession I on thee bestow
Th’ Heathen, and as thy conquest to be sway’d
Earths utmost bounds: them shalt thou bring full low
With Iron Scepter bruis’d, and them disperse
Like to a potters vessel shiver’d so.
And now be wise at length ye Kings averse
Be taught ye Judges of the earth; with fear
Jehovah serve, and let your joy converse
With trembling; kiss the Son least he appear
In anger and ye perish in the way
If once his wrath take fire like fuel sere.
Happy all those who have in him their stay.

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