V. The Great Controversy Suite, No. 1 - Battle of Ages
by Pablo A. Aguilar
A long time ago, in the highest place, the first war between the forces of good and evil broke down. It all started when Lucifer aspired to be like God. The foundation of God’s government was the law of love and He granted freedom of will to all his creatures, including Lucifer. But he chose to pervert this freedom. In spite of being the most honored, beautiful, and powerful of all the creatures, he wanted more. Pride in his own glory nourished the desire for supremacy. So he went out to spread discontent among the angels. He claimed that he was seeking to win liberty for all the inhabitants in heaven.
Still, God offered him pardon on condition of repentance and submission. But he persistently defended his own course, and fully committed himself against his Maker. Lucifer now applied all the powers of his master mind to deception, to gain the sympathy of the angels and was able to enlist a third of them to his cause and declared war. God could have easily destroyed him and his followers, but instead He chose to expel them from heaven and sent them to a tiny planet in the universe: earth. His name was changed to Satan and the great controversy continued. Satan’s rebellion was to be a testimony to the universe about the terrible results of evil. Adam and Eve were the first victims of Satan’s attack on earth but hope and grace was provided for them and for the rest of the human race.
In this piece you may hear various sonic symbolisms. The opening percussion-like pattern stands for war and it’s made up of the white against black keys of the piano. Consonance in general corresponds to the force of good, and specifically, major chords represent the Trinity. Dissonance in general characterizes the force of evil, and Lucifer specifically is embodied by the tritone. The last glissando, that includes all the white and black keys of the piano, signifies the expelling of evil from heaven. The piece quotes at the end the hymn “Near the Cross” that says: “in the cross, in the cross, be my glory ever, till my raptured soul shall find rest beyond the river.” The piece ends by using the harmonic progression from Dvorak’s “New World” symphony, second movement.
Dedicated to my brother Miguel: because you were named after Michael, the central figure in the Great Controversy
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