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"Freely We Serve, Because We Freely Love"

(Magill's Quotations in Context)

Context: After Adam and Eve have performed their morning devotions, they see through the trees the glorious shape of Raphael approaching them. Adam tells Eve to prepare a meal; Eve does so by collecting all kinds of fruits and pressing out unfermented grape juice. Adam bids Raphael welcome and offers him what Eve has prepared; for a while they talk, and then Raphael explains that angels require food, just as man does. Milton is here considering the angels as a link between God and man in the great chain of being, and therefore composed of rarefied matter instead of pure spirit. Raphael further explains that the angels have all the senses that man has. Finer fruits grow in heaven than on earth, but Raphael will by no means spurn the earthly produce: all things proceed from God, and they are all good until perverted. He explains gradations of being and says that man functions by means of reason and some intuition, the angels by intuition and some reason. He says that man may, through ascending...

(The entire section is 355 words.)