The Son as Hero
Even as epic poets face their predecessors in a struggle for poetic fame and to remake the genre in which they wrote, they also can address contemporary issues, as Dante did when depicting so many of his fellow Florentines being punished in the Inferno, and as Virgil did when Aeneas encounters the future rulers of Rome in the Underworld, waiting to be born if he can succeed in his mission. Do you see signs Milton is criticizing Restoration London in Paradise Lost? Although I did not assign Book III, you might want to look at the language in which God responds to the Son's voluntary acceptance of death to save humanity:
O thou in Heav'n and Earth the only peace
Found out for mankind under wrauth, O thou [ 275 ]
My sole complacence! well thou know'st how dear,
To me are all my works, nor Man the least
Though last created, that for him I spare
Thee from my bosom and right hand, to save,
By loosing thee a while, the whole Race lost. [ 280 ]
Thou therefore whom thou only canst redeem,
Thir Nature also to thy Nature joyn;
And be thy self Man among men on Earth,
Made flesh, when time shall be, of Virgin seed,
By wondrous birth: Be thou in Adams room [ 285 ]
The Head of all mankind, though Adams Son.
As in him perish all men, so in thee
As from a second root shall be restor'd,
As many as are restor'd, without thee none.
[Text quoted from the excellent searchable, moderately annotated digital edition at Luxon, Thomas H., ed. The Milton Reading Room, http://www.dartmouth.edu/~milton, 11/9/09].