Sunday, 20 May 2012

Fictitious Sequels to the Bible

The Bible

Water is the primordial formless chaos. There are three successive universes. (i) Waters above and below are separated and the waters below are moved aside. Sky, sea and land are filled with lights, fish and animals, respectively. (ii) The Flood undoes creation but the Ark survives into the second universe, which we inhabit. (iii) The third universe will have no sea, thus no threatened return of chaos.

A Prequel

Paradise Lost by John Milton describes Heaven, Hell and Chaos before creation. Miltonic Chaos is formless matter, not liquid water.

A Scriptural Sequel

The Book of Mormon describes the Lost Tribes and the Risen Christ in North America.

Prose Fictitious Sequels

In C. S. Lewis’ Ransom Trilogy, a Christian warns the Venerian Eve not to disobey her creator and the Curse of Babel returns to Earth.1 In James Blish’s After Such Knowledge trilogy, Satan possibly creates a planet and definitely wins Armageddon.2,3 Blish writes that Dante saw, but Milton imagined, Satan. Blish’s universe is galactic, not Biblical.

Milton was unsure:

“…whether Heav’n move, or Earth…”4

Lewis fights a rearguard action, describing the translunar universe as theocentric and unFallen. Blish, writing as William Atheling Jr., comments that Lewis:

“…set out to impose upon the solar system a strange Anglican-cum-Babylonian theology and cosmogony, with amazingly convincing results despite Lewis’ decidedly foggy view of astronomy and most of the other sciences he seeks to diabolize.”5

Graphic Fictitious Sequels

Alan Moore’s adult comic strips present an angel who remained neutral during the Miltonic War in Heaven and witches who conjure the Original Darkness that was before the Creation.6,7 Neil Gaiman’s Sandman graphic novels confirm that Cain still dwells in the land of Nod, the Dreaming.8 For their role in the first story, Cain and Abel are given the guardianship of stories, particularly those published in the DC Comics horror titles, The House Of Mysteries and The House Of Secrets.
When Morpheus, Lord of Dreams, sends a message to Lucifer, Lord of Hell, Cain is the only messenger whom Lucifer will not harm. We see Cain’s Mark.8
Lucifer: “Still. ‘Better to reign in Hell, than serve in Heaven.’ Eh, little brother-killer?”
Cain: “Suh-certainly, Lord Lucifer. Whatever you say, Lord Lucifer.”
Lucifer: “We didn’t say it. Milton said it. And he was blind.” 9

Thus, four authors write worthy sequels to Paradise Lost and the Bible.
  1. C. S. Lewis, The Cosmic Trilogy (London: Pan Books, 1990).
  2. James Blish, A Case Of Conscience (Harmondsworth, Middlesex: Penguin Books Ltd, 1963).
  3. James Blish, Black Easter and The Day After Judgement (London: Arrow Books, 1981).
  4. John Milton, Paradise Lost/Paradise Regained/Samson Agonistes (New York: Collier Books, 1966), p.156.
  5. William Atheling Jr., The Issue At Hand (Chicago: Advent Publishers, 1967), p. 53.
  6. Alan Moore, Across The Universe: the DC Universe Stories of Alan Moore (New York: DC Comics, 2003), pp. 167-177.
  7. Alan Moore, Swamp Thing: A Murder Of Crows (New York: DC Comics, 2001).
  8. Neil Gaiman, The Sandman: Season Of Mists (London: Titan Books, 1992), Episode 1, p. 10.
  9. ibid, p. 20.


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