« PrécédentContinuer »
the divine Essence, it is to make you conceive, ( ficulties' Have rational men need to be conthat all which is in God, if I may so speak, is vinced, that the mysteries of religion are infiinterested for our salvation, and to enkindle nitely more defensible than the mysteries of our efforts by the thouglit. If we say, that the atheism. Word was made flesh, and that the son of Do you espouse the part of irreligion? Do God expired on the cross, it is to make you you allow with Epicures, that there is a God; abhor sin by the idea of what it cost him to ex- but that the sublimity of his Majesty obstructs piate it. If we say, that grace operates in the his stooping to men, and the extension of his heart, and that in the work of our salvation, regards to our temples, and our altars? And is grace forms the design and the execution, it is this the system which has no difficulties? How with this inference, ihat we should “work out do you reply to the infinity of objections opour own salvation with fear and trembling.” posed to this system? How do you answer this If we teach even the doctrines of God's de- argument, that God having not disdained to crees, it is “to make our calling sure,” Phil. create mankind, it is inconceivable he should ii. 12; 1 Pet. i. 10.
disdain to govern them? How do you reply to IV. We have lastly said, that mysteries a second, the inconceivableness that a perfect should render a religion doubtful, when we find being should form intelligences, and not prea system, which on rejecting those mysteries, scribe their devotion to his glory? And what is exempt from greater difficulties than those do you say to a third, that religion is completewe would attack. We make this remark as a ly formed, and fully proved in every man's compliment to unbelievers, and to the impure conscience? class of brilliant wits. When we have proved, Do you take the part of denying a divine reasoned, and demonstrated; when we have revelation? And is this the system which is explaced the arguments of religion in the clearest empt from difficulties? Can you really prove degree of evidence they can possibly attain: that our books were not composed by the auand when we would decide in favour of reli- thors to whom they are ascribed? Can you gion, they invariably insinuate, that "religion really prove that those men have not wrought has its mysteries; that religion has its difficul- miracles? Can you really prove that the Bible ties;" and they make these the apology of their is not the book the most luminous, and the unbelief.
most snblime, that ever appeared on earth? I confess, this objection would have some Can you really prove, that fishermen, publicolour, if there were any system, which on ex- cans, and tent-makers, and whatever was lowempting us from the difficulties of religion, did est among the mean populace of Judea; can not involve in still greater. And whenever you prove, that people of this description, have they produce that system, we are ready to em- without divine assistance, spoken of the origin brace it.
of the world; and of the perfections of God; of Associate all the difficulties of which we al- the nature of man, his constitution, and his dulow religion to be susceptible. Associate what-ties, in a manner more grand, noble, and better ever is incomprehensible in the doctrine of the supported than Plato, than Zeno, than EpicuTrinity, and in the ineffable manner in which rus, and all the sublime geniuses, which render the three persons subsist, who are the object of antiquity venerable, and which still fill the our worship. Add thereto whatever is super- universe with their fame? natural in the operations of the Holy Spirit, Do you espouse the canse of deism? Do you and in the mysterious methods he adopts to say with the Latitudinarian, that if there be a penetrate the heart. Neither forget the depths religion, it is not shut up in the narrow bounds into which we are apparently cast by the doc- which we prescribe? Do you maintain that all trines of God's decrees, and make a complete religions are indifferent Do you give a false code of the whole.
gloss to the apostle's words, that "in all naTo these difficulties which we avow, join all tions he that feareth God is accepted of him?" those we do not avow. Join all the pretexts Acts x. 35. And is this the system which is you affect to find in the arguments which na- exempt from difficulties? How, superseding the ture affords of the being of a God, and the re- authority of the Bible, will you maintain this ality of a providence. Join thereto whatever principle? How will you maintain it against you shall find the most forcible against the au- the terrors God denounces against the base, thenticity of our sacred books, and what has "and the fearful,” Rev. xxi. S; against the inbeen thought the most plausible against the junction "to go out of Babylon; against the marks of Divine authority exhibited in those duty prescribed of consessing him in presence Scriptures. Join to these all the advantages of all men,” Isa. xlviii. 20; Matt. x. 32; and presumed to be derived from the diversity of with regard to the fortitude he requires us to opinions existing in the Christian world, and in display on the rack, and when surrounded with all its sects which constantly attack one another. fire and fagots, and when called to brave them Make a new code of all these difficulties.- for the sake of truth! How will you maintain Form a system of your own objections. Draw it against the care he has taken to teach you the conclusions from your own principles, and the truth without any mixture of lies? build an edifice of infidelity on the ruins of re Do you take the part of believing nothing? ligion. But for what system can you decide Do you conclude from these difficulties, that which is not infinitely less supportable than re- the best system is to have none at all. Obstiligion?
nate Pyrrhonian, you are then resolved to doubt Do you espouse that of atheism? Do you of all! And is this the system which is exempt say, that the doctrine of the being of a God from difficulties? When you shall be agreed owes its origin to superstition and the fears of with yourself; when you have conciliated your men And is this the system which has no dif- singular system with the convictions of your
mind, with the sentiments of your heart, and it is not from their approbation that they derive with the dictates of your conscience, then you their authority. Meanwhile, it is a felicity, we shall see what we have to reply.
must confess, and an anticipation of the happy What then shall you do to find a light with period when our faith shall be changed to sight, out darkness, and an evidence to your mind to find in sound reason the basis of all the grand Do you take the part of the libertine? Do you truths religion reveals, and to convince ourabandon to colleges the care of religion, and selves by experience, that the more we know leaving the doctors to waste life deciding who of man, the more we see that religion was made is wrong, and who is right, are you determined for man. Let us return to our first principle. as to yourself to rush head foremost into the The narrow limits of the human mind shall world? Do you say with the profane, “Let us open one source of light on the subject we diseat and drink, for to-morrow we die?” Do you cuss; they shall convince us, that minds cirenjoy the present without pursuing uncertain cumscribed, as ours, cannot before the time perewards, and alarming your mind with fears of netrate far into the adorable mysteries of faith. miseries which perhaps may never come? And We have elsewhere distinguished three faculis this the system destitute of mysteries? Is this ties in the mind of man, or rather three classes the system preferred to what is said by our apos- of faculties which comprise whatever we know tles, our evangelists, our doctors, our pastors, and of this spirit; the faculty of thinking; the faculty by all the holy men God has raised up for the of feeling; and the faculty of loving. Examine perfecting of the saints, and for the work of the these three faculties, and you will be convinced ministry? But though the whole of your ob- that the mind of man is circumscribed within jections were founded; though the mysteries of narrow bounds; they are so closely circumthe gospel were a thousand times more difficult scribed, that while attentively contemplating a to penetrate; though our knowledge were in certain object, they cannot attend to any other. comparably more circumscribed; and though You experience this daily with regard to the religion should be infinitely less demonstrated faculty of thinking. Some persons, I allow, than it is; should this be the part you ought to extend attention much beyond common men; take? The sole probability of religion, should but in all it is extremely confined. This is so it not induce us, if not to believe it, yet at least, received an opinion, that we regard as prodigies so to act, as if in fact we did believe it? And of intellect, those who have the art of attending the mere alternative of an eternal happiness, or closely to two or three objects at once; or of dian eternal misery, should it not suffice to re- recling the attention, without a glance of the strict us within the limits of duty, and to regu- eye, on any game, apparently less invented to late our life, in such sort, that if there be a hell, unbend than to exercise the inind. Meanwhile, we may avoid its torments?
this power is extremely limited in all men. If We conclude. Religion has its mysteries; the mind can distinctly glance on two or three we acknowledge it with pleasure. Religion has objects at once, the fourth or the fisth confounds its difficulties; we avow it. Religion is shook it. Properly to study a subject, we must attend (we grant this for the moment to unbelievers, to that alone; be abstracted from all others, though we detest it in our hearts,) religion is forgetful of what we do, and blind to what we shook, and ready to fall by brilliant wits. But see. after all, the mysteries of the gospel are not of The faculty of feeling is as circumscribed as that cast which should render a religion doubt that of thinking. One sensation absorbs or diful. But after all, Christianity all shook, all minishes another. A wound received in the wavering, and ready to fall, as it may appear heat of battle; in the tumult, or in the sight of to the infidel, contains what is most certain, and the general whose approbation we seek, is less the wisest part a rational man can take, is to acute than it would be on a different occasion. adhere to it with an inviolable attachment. For the like reason the same pain we have
But how evident soever these arguments ma borne during the day, is insupp able in the be, and however strong this apology for the night. Violent anguish renders us insensible ditficulties of religion may appear, there always of a diminutive pain. Whatever diverts from remains a question on this subject, and indeed a pleasing sensation diminishes the pleasure, an important question, which we cannot omit and blunts enjoyinent; and this is done by the resolving without leaving a chasm in this dis reason already assigned; that while the faculty course. "Why these mysteries? Why these sha- is attentive to one object, it is incapable of apdows And why this darkness? Does not the plication to another. goodness of God engage to remove this stum It is the same with regard to the faculty of bling-block, and to give us a religion radiant loving. It rarely happens that a man can inwith truth, and destitute of any obscuring veil? dulge two or three leading passions at once: There are various reasons, my brethren, which 'No man can serve two masters: for either he render certain doctrines of religion impene will hate the one, and love the other; or else he trable to us.
will hold to the one, and despise the other." The first argument of the weakness of our So is the assertion of Jesus Christ, who knew knowledge is derived from the limits of the hu- the human heart better than all the pliilosophers man mind. It is requisite that you should fa- put together. The passion of avarice, for the vour me here with a little more of recollection most part, diminishes the passion of glory; and than is usually bestowed on a sermon. It is not the passion of glory, diminishes that of avarice. requisite to be a philosopher to become a Chris- It is the same with the other passions. tian. The doctrines of our religion, and the Besides, not only an object engrossing a faprecepts of our moral code, are sanctioned by culty, obstructs its profound attention to any the testimony of an infallible God: and not de- other object related to that faculty; but when a riving their origin from the speculations of men, / faculty is deeply engrossed by an object, all
others, if I may so speak, remain in solitude and of the knowledge of God; how unsearchable and slumber; the capacity of the soul being are his judgments, and his ways past finding wholly absorbed. man who concentrates out!” Rom. xi. 33–35. Let us adore a Being himself in research, in the illustration of a diffi- so immense; and let his incomprehensibility culty, in the solution of a problem, in the con serve to give us the more exalted ideas of his templation of a combined truth; he loses for the grandeur; and seeing we can never know him moment, the faculty of feeling, and becomes to perfection, let us, at the least, form the noble insensible of sound, of noise, of light. A man, desire of knowing him as far as it is allowable on the contrary, who freely abandons himself to finite intelligences. And as Manoah, who, to a violent sensation, or whom God afflicts after receiving the mysterious vision recorded acutely, loses for the time, the faculty of think- Judges xiii. prayed the angel of the Lord, saying. Speak, reason, and examine; draw con- ing, “Tell me, I pray thee, thy name;" and sequences, and all that is foreign to this point: received the answer, “ It is wonderful;” so he is no longer a thinking being; he is a feeling should we say with this holy man, “I pray being, and wholly so. Thus the principle we thee, tell me thy name,” give me to know this establish is an indisputable axiom in the study “wonderful name." Let us say with Moses, of inan, that the human mind is circumscribed, “Lord, let me see thy glory," Exod. xxxiii. 18. and inclosed in very narrow limits.
And with the prophet, “Lord, open thou mine The relation of this principle to the subject eyes, that I may behold the marvels of thy law," we discuss, obtrudes itself on our regard. A Ps. cxix. 18. slight reflection on the limits of the human mind The third cause of the obscurity of our knowwill convince us, that men who make so slow ledge is, that truths the most simple, and oba progress in abstruse science, can never fathom jects the least combined, have, however, certain the deep mysteries of religion. And it is the depths and abysses beyond the reach of thought; more evident, as these linnited faculties can because truths the inost simple, and objects the never be wholly applied to the study of truth. least combined, have a certain tie with infinity, There is no moment of life, in which they are that they cannot be comprehended without not divided; there is no moment in which they comprehending this infinity: Nothing is more are not engaged in the care of the body, in the simple, nothing is less combined, in regard to recollection of some fugitive ideas, and on sub- me, than this proposition; there are certain exjects which have no connexion with those to terior objects which actually strike my eyes, which we would direct our study.
which excite certain emotions in my brain, and A second reason of the limits of our know- certain perceptions in my mind. Meanwhile, ledge arises from those very mysteries which this proposition so simple, and so little comexcite obscurity, astonishment, and awe. What bined, has certain depths and obscurities above are those mysteries of what do they treat my thought, because it is connected with other They treat of what is the most elevated and inquiries concerning this infinity, which I cansublime: they concern the essence of the Cre- not comprehend. It is connected with this; ator: they concern the attributes of the Supreme cannot the perfect Being excite certain percepBeing: they concern whatever has been thouglit tions in my mind, and emotions in my brain the most immense in the mind of eternal wis- without the aid of exterior objects. It is condom: they concern the traces of that impetuous nected with another; will the goodness and wind, "which blows where it listeth,” and truth of this perfect Being suffer certain perwhich moves in one moment to every part of ceptions to be excited in the mind, and emotions the universe. And we, insignificant beings; we in the brain, by which we forcibly believe that altogether obstructed, confounded, and absorb- certain exterior objects exist, when in fact, they ed, we affect an air of surprise because we can do not exist? It is connected with divers other not fathom the depths of those mysteries! It is inquiries of like nature, which involve us in not merely while on earth that we cannot com- discussions, which absorb and confound our prehend those immensities; but we can never feeble genius. Thus, we are not only incapable comprehend them in the other world; because of fathoming certain inquiries which regard inGod is always unlimited, always infinite, and finity, but we are equally incapable of fully always above the reach of circumscribed intel- satisfying ourselves concerning those that are ligences; and because we shall be always finite, simple, because they are connected with the always limited, always creatures circumscribed.infinite. Prudence, therefore, requires that men Perfect knowledge belongs to God alone. should aamit, as proved, the truths which have, “Canst thou by searching find out God? Canst in regard to them, the characters of demonstrathou find out the Almighty unto perfection? It tion. It is by these characters they should is as high as heaven, what canst thou do? deeper judge. But after all, there is none but the perthan hell, what canst thou know?"' Job xi. 7,8. fect Being, who can have perfect demonstration; “Where wast thou when he laid the founda- at least, the perfect Being alone can fully pertions of the earth? When he shut up the sea ceive in the immensity of bis knowledge, all with doors. When he made the clouds the gar- the connexions which finite beings have with ments thereof, and thick darkness a swaddling the infinite. band for it. When he subjected it to his laws, A fourth reason of the obscurity of our knowand prescribed its barriers, and said, hitherto ledge, is the grand end God proposed when he shalt thou come, and here shall thy proud waves placed us upon the earth: this end is our sanctibe stayed?” xxxviii. 4. 9–11. Who hath | fication. The questions on which religion leaves known the mind of the Lord, or who hath been so much obscurity, do not devolve on simple his counsellor? Or who bath first given him, principles, which may be comprehended in a and it shall be recoinpensed unto him again? moment. The acutest mathematician, he who O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom, I can make a perfect demonstration of a given
seen at once.
number, cannot do it in a moment, if that | life, with our exile, our imprisonment, our number be complicated: and the tardy compre- sickness, our perfidy, our infidelity, with the hension of him to whom a complicated pro- loss of our relatives, of separation from our blem is demonstrated, requires a still greater dearest friends. We must answer the objeclength of time. He must comprehend by a tion drawn from the darkness which envelopes succession of ideas what cannot be proved by most of the objects of sense, as we do to those a single glance of the eye. A man, posted on drawn from the complication of our calamities. an elevated tower, may see at once the whole It is, that this world is not the abode of our of a considerable army in motion; but he at felicity. It is, that the awful wounds of sin are the base of this tower, can see them only as not yet wholly healed. It is, that our soul is they present themselves in succession. God still clothed with matter. We must lament is exalted above all creatures; he sees the the miseries of a life in which reason is enwhole by a single regard. He has but, if I slaved, in which the sphere of our knowledge may so speak, to apply his mind, and all are is so confined, and in which we feel ourselves
But we, poor abject creatures, obstructed at every step of our meditation and we are placed in the humblest point of the uni- research. We have a soul greedy of wisdom
How then can we, during the period and knowledge; a soul susceptible of an infinity of fifty, or if you please, a hundred years of of perceptions and ideas; a soul to which knowlife, destined to active duties, how can we pre- ledge and intelligence are the nourishment and sume to make a combination of all the Crea- food: and this soul is localized in a world: but tor's perfections and designs, though he him- in what world? In a world, where we do but self should deign in so great a work to be our imperfectly know ourselves; in a world, where guide. Great men have said, that all possible our sublimest knowledge, and profoundest replans were presented to the mind of God when searches resemble little children who divert he made the universe, and that, comparing themselves at play. The idea is not mine; it them one with another, he chose the best. Let is suggested by St. Paul, in the words subseus make the supposition without adopting it; quent to our text. “When I was a child, I let us suppose that God, wishful to justify to spake as a child, I understood as a child, I our mind the plan he has adopted, should pre- thought as a child.” The contrast is not unsent to us all his plans; and comparison alone just. Literally, all this knowledge, all these could ensure approbation; but does it imply a sermons, all this divinity, and all those comcontradiction, that fifty, or a hundred years of mentaries, are but as the simple comparisons life, engrossed by active duties, should suffice employed to make children understand exalted for so vast a design? Had God encumbered truths. They are but as the types, which God religion with the illustration of all abstruse employed in the ancient law to instruct the doctrines, concerning which it observes a pro- Jews, while in a state of infancy. How imfound silence; and with the explication of all perfect were those types! What relation had the mysteries it imperfectly reveals; had he ex a sheep to the Victim of the new covenant? plained to us the depths of his nature and es What proportion had a priest to the Sovereign sence; had he discovered to us the immense Pontiff of the church! Such is the state of combination of his attributes; had he qualified man while here placed on the earth. us to trace the unsearchable ways of his Spirit But a happier period must follow this of huin our heart; had he shown us the origin, the iniliation. *** When I was a child, I spake as end, and arrangement of his counsels; had he a child, I understood as a child, I thought as wished to gratify the infinite inquiries of our a child; but when I became a man, I put away curiosity, and to acquaint us with the object childish things." Charming thought, my breof his views during the absorbing revolutions thren, of the change that death shall produce prior to the birth of time, and with those which in us; shall supersede the puerilities of inmust follow it; had he thus multiplied to in- fancy; it shall draw the curtain which conceals finity speculative ideas, what time should we the objects of expectation. How ravished must have had for practical duties? Dissipated by the soul be when this curtain is uplifted! Inthe cares of life, occupied with its wants, and stead of worshipping in these assemblies, it sentenced to the toils it imposes, what time finds itself instantly elevated to the choirs of would have remained to succour the wretched, angels, " the ten thousand times ten thousand to visit the sick, and to comfort the distressed before the Lord.” Instead of hearing the Yea, and what is still more, to study and van- hymns we sing to his glory, it instantly hears quish our own heart—0 how admirably is the the hallelujahs of celestial spirits, and the way of God, in the restriction of our knowledge, dread shouts of “Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord worthy of his wisdom! He has taught us no- of hosts: the whole earth is full of thy glory.” thing but what has the most intimate connex. Instead of listening to this frail preacher, who ion with our duties, that we might ever be at- endeavours to develop the imperfect notions tentive to them, and that there is nothing in he has imbibed in a confined understanding, religion which can possibly attract us from it instantly hears the great head of the church, those duties.
"who is the author, and finisher of our faith." 5. The miseries inseparable from life, are Instead of perceiving some traces of God's perthe ultimate reason of the obscurity of our fections in the beauties of nature, it finds itself knowledge both in religion and in nature. To in the midst of his sublimest works; in the ask why God has involved religion in so much midst of “the heavenly Jerusalem, whose gates darkness, is asking why he has not given us a are of pearl, whose foundations are of precious nature like those spirits which are not clothed stones, and whose walls are of jasper."--Do with mortal flesh. We must class the obscurity we then still fear death! And have we still of our knowledge with the other infirmities of | need of comforters when we approach that
happy period? And have we still need to re | when we were enabled to bid adieu, perhaps sume all our constancy, and all our fortitude an eternal adieu, to our country: what promptto support the idea of dying! And is it stilled us to exile was not the hope of finding more necessary to pluck us from the earth, and to engaging company, a happier climate and more tear us by force to the celestial abode, which perinanent establishments. Motives altogether shall consummate our felicity? Ah! how the of another kind animated our hearts. We had prophet Elisha, who saw his master ascend in seen the edifices reduced to the dust, which the chariot of fire, ploughing the air on his bril- we had been accustomed to make resound with liant throne, and crossing the vast expanse the praises of God: we had heard "the children which separates heaven from earth; how Elisha of Edom,” with hatchets in their hand, shout regretted the absence of so worthy a master, against those sacred mansions, “down with whom he now saw no more, and whom he them; down with them, even to the ground.”— must never see in life; how he cried in that May you, ye natives of these provinces, among moment, “My father, my father, the chariot whom it has pleased the Lord to lead us, ever of Israel, and the horsemen thereof." These be ignorant of the like calamities. May you emotions are strikingly congenial to the senti- indeed never know them, but by the experience ments of self-love, so dear to us. But Elijah of those to whom you have so amply afforded himself-Elijah, did he fear to soar in so sub- the means of subsistence. We could not surlime a course! Elijah already ascended to the vive the liberty of our conscience, we have middle regions of the air, in whose eyes the wandered to seek it, though it should be in earth appeared but as an atom retiring out of dens and deserts. Zeal gave animation to the sight; Elijah, whose head already reached to aged, whose limbs were benumbed with years. heaven; did Elijah regret the transition he was Fathers and mothers took their children in their about to complete! Did he regret the world, arms, who were too young to know the danger and its inhabitants!— soul of man;-regene- from which they were plucked: each was conrate soul-daily called to break the fetters tent" with his soul for a prey," and required which unite thee to a mortal body, take thy nothing but the precious liberty he had lost. flight towards heaven. Ascend this fiery We have found it among you, our generous chariot, which God has sent to transport thee benefactors; you have received us as your breabove the earth where thou dwellest. See thren, as your children; and have admitted us the heavens which open for thy reception; ad- into your churches. We have communicated mire the beauties, and estimate the charms al- with you at the same table; and now you have ready realized by thy hope. Taste those in- permitted us, a handful of exiles, to build a effable delights. Anticipate the perfect felicity, church to that God whom we mutually adore. with which death is about to invest thee. Thou You wish also to partake with us in our gratideedest no more than this last moment of my tude, and to join your homages with those we ministry. Death himself is about to do all the have just rendered to him in this new edifice. rest, to dissipate all thy darkness, to justify re But alas! those of our fellow-countrymen, ligion, and to crown thy hopes.
whose minds are still impressed with the recollection of those foriner churches, whose de
struction occasioned them much grief, cannot SERMON XCIV.
taste a joy wholly pure. The ceremonies of
this day will associate themselves, with those CONSECRATION OF THE CHURCH celebrated on laying the foundation-stone of AT VOORBURGH, 1726.
the second temple. The priests officiated, indeed, in their pontifical robes; the Levites,
sons of Asaph, caused their cymbals to resound Ezek. ix. 16.
afar; one choir admirably concerted its reAlthough I have cast them far off among the hea- sponse to another; all the people raised a shout
then, and among the countries, yet will I be lo of joy, because the foundation of the Lord's thein as a little sanctuary in the countries where house was laid. But the chiefs of the fathers, they shall come.
and the aged men, who had seen the superior The cause of our assembling to-day, my glory of the former temple, wept aloud, and brethren, is one of the most evident marks of in such sort that one could not distinguish the God's powerful protection, extended to a mul- voice of joy from the voice of weeping. titude of exiles whom these provinces have en Come, notwithstanding, my dear brethren, circled with a protecting arm. It is a fact, and let us mutually praise the God, who,“ in that since we abandoned our native land, we the midst of wrath remembers mercy,” Hab. have been loaded with divine favours. Some iii. 2. Let us gratefully meditate on this fresh of us have lived in affluence; others in the en- accomplishinent of the prophecy I have just joyments of mediocrity, often preferable to af- read in your presence; "Though I have cast Huence; and all have seen this confidence them far off among the heathen, and among crowned, which has enabled them to say, while the countries, yet will I be to them as a little living even without resource, “In the moun- sanctuary in the countries where they shall tain of the Lord, it shall be seen; in the moun come.” These are God's words to Ezekiel: to tain of the Lord, he will there provide." understand them, and with that view I attempt
But how consoling soever the idea may be the discussion, we must trace the events to in our dispersion of that gracious Providence, their source, and go back to the twenty-ninth which has never ceased to watch for our wel- year of king Josiah, to form correct ideas of fare, it is not the principal subject of our grati- the end of our prophet's ministry. It was in tude. God has corresponded more directly this year, that Nabopolassar, king of Babylon, with the object with which we were animated I and Astyages, king of Media, being allied by