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I must deliver, if I mean to reign
So spake, Israel's true King, and to the fiend Made answer meet, that made void all his wiles. So fares it, when with truth falsehood contends.
Satan, persisting in the temptation of our Lord, shows him imperial Rome in its greatest pomp and splendour, as a power which he probably would prefer before that of the Parthians ; and teils him that he might with the greatest ease expel Tibe. rius, restore the Romans to their liberty, and make himself master not only of the Roman empire, but, by so doing, of the whole world, and inclusively of the throne of David. Our Lord in reply, expresses his contempt of grandeur and worldly power, notices the luxury, vanity, and profligacy, of the Romans, de. claring how little they merited to be restored to that liberty which they had lost by their misconduct, and briefly refers to the greatness of his own future kingdom, Satan, now desperate to enhance the value of his proffered gifts, professes that the only terms on which he will bestow them, are our Saviour's falling down and worshipping him. Our Lord expresses a firm but temperate indignation at such a proposition, and rebukes the tempter by the title of "Satan for ever damn d.” Satan, abashed, atteinpts to justify himself: he then assumes a new ground of temptation, and proposing to Jesus the intellectual gratifications of wisdom and knowledge, points out to him the celebrated seat of ancient learning, Athens, its schools, and other various resorts of learned teachers and their disciples; accompanying the view with a highly-finished panegyric on the Grecian musicians, poets, orators, and philosophers of the dif. ferent sects. Jesus replies, by showing the vanity and insuffi. ciency of the beasted heathen philosophy; and prefers to the music, poetry, eloquence, and didactic policy, of the Greeks, those of the inspired Hebrew writers. Satan, irritated at the failure of all his attempte, upbraids the indiscretion of our Saviour in rejecting his offers; and having, in idicule of his expected kingdom, foretold the sufferings that our Lord was to undergo, carries him back into the wilderness, and leaves himn there. Night comes ou : Satan raises a tremendous storm, and attempts farther to alarm Jesus with frightful dreams, and ter. rific threatening spectres; which however have no effect upon him. A calm, bright, beautiful morning succeedls to the horrors of the night. Satan again presents himself to our blessed Loni, ard, from noticing the storm of the preceding night as pointei chiefly at him, takes occasion once more to insult him with an account of the sufferings which he was certainly to undergo. This only draws from our Lord a brief rebuke. Satan, now at the height of his desperation, confesses that he had frequently watched Jesus from his birth, purposely to discover if he was the true Messiah; and, collecting from what passed at the rirer Jordan that he most probably was so, he had from that time more assiduously followed him, in hopes of gaining some adran. lage over him, which would wiost effectually prove that he was not really that Dirine Person destined to be his " fatal enemy;"
In this he acknowledges that he has hitherto completely failed; but still determines to make one more trial of him. Accor. dingly he conveys him to the temple at Jerusalem, and, placing him on a pointed eminence, requires him to prove his divinity, either by standing there, or casting himself down with safety. Our Lord reproves the tempter, and at the same time ranifests his own divinity by standing on this dangerous point. Satan, amazed and terrified, instantly falls; and repairs to his infernal compeers to relate the bad success of his enterprise. Angels, in the mean time convey our blessed Lord to a beautiful valley, and, while they minister to him a repast of celestial food, cele brate his victory in a triumphant hymn.
PERPLEX'n and troubled at his bad success
Divided by a river, of whose banks
“ The city which thou seest, no other deem
: Above the rest lifting his stately head On the Tarpeian rock, her citadel. Impregnable; and, there Mount Palatine, Th’imperial palace, compass huge, and ligh. The structure, skill, of noblest architects, With gilded Lattlements, conspicuous far,, Turrets, and terraces, and glitt'ring spires, Many, a fair edifice besides, more like Houses of gods (so well I have dispos’d, My airy microscope,) thou may'st behold Outside and inside boib, pillars and roofs, Carv'd work, the hand of fam'd artificers, In cedar, marble, ivory or gold. Thence to the gates.cast round thine eye, and see. What conflux issuing forth, or entering in ; Prætors, proconsuls to their provinces Hasting, or on return, iv robes of state: Lictors, and rods, the ensigns of their power, Legions and cohorts, turms of horse and wings: Or einbassies from regions far remote In various habits on the Appian road, Or on th’ Emilian; some from farthest south, Syene, and where the shadow both ways falls, Meroe Nilotic isle, and more to west, The realm of Bocchus to the Black-moor sea;.
From th’ Asian kings, and Parthian among these,
To whom the Son of God unmov'd replied: