THE LIFE AND LITERAURE OF JOHN BUNYAN Part 7 The Pilgrim’s Progress from this World to that Which is to Come; Faithful and Vanity Fair After passing through the dark and dangerous Valley of the Shadow of Death, Christian overtakes Faithful, also a former citizen of the City of Destruction. This lesson is a character... Continue Reading →
On leaving the fellowship and the peace of the Palace Beautiful, the pilgrim’s path now led Christian down a steep slope into a landscape dominated by two difficult and treacherous places named The Valley of Humiliation and The Valley of the Shadow of Death.
God’s will often leads us into places that the flesh finds to be most unpleasant. When called to stand alone for truth, to face opposition and criticism – the way is not easy. Yet this is the way that the Saviour himself took, our great inspiration
This cross which Bunyan depicts is bloodless. There is no crucifix, there is no dying Saviour thereon, it has been vacated yet it represents the price that has been paid. The Roman model of a cross still holding the Saviour is indicative of their mass and of the desire to offer Christ constantly. Our faith rests on a Saviour who died once, and it is on the merits of this one sacrifice that we stand
THE REMAINING BURDEN For some readers it seems surprising that after passing through the Wicket Gate, with the assistance of Good-Will, Christian’s burden remains. We should not necessarily assume, however, that assurance is a blessing that every converted soul instantly receives. Some struggle with the burden of assurance longing to be free of their horrible... Continue Reading →
Bunyan is the master of the Christian allegory. An allegory is a metaphor, a means of communicating a message by the means of symbols, like our Saviour’s parables. The author begins by presenting himself as falling asleep while walking “through the wilderness of this world” and in his dream, he sees a man, the pilgrim called “Christian”, who as he reveals later was initially known as “Graceless”.