He left it in thy power, ordained thy will
By nature free, not overruled by fate
Milton, Paradise Lost, Book V, 526-527
We are by nature free, so we are free,
And we choose to use that freedom to repay
The one who made us in his form, who lets us think ourselves
So we wake and work and rest for Him each day.
But if we were formed free, why did you not say
What was ‘death’ that you spoke of with such fear?
If formed to obey, why can we choose to be free?
Why can we choose if ignorantly?
We are half our nature, and half your slaves –
No wonder we choose not choosing, choose to obey.
It is constantly mentioned in Paradise Lost that the characters have free will, and must be for God to be good, and for love of God to have meaning. Indeed, it is needed for people to choose to obey God. A fascinating state of affairs.
The Hapless Neo-Romantic