The Pilgrim's Progress
By John Bunyan, John (1628-1688)
The Pilgrim's Progress
From This World to That Which is to Come;
Delivered under the Similitude of a Dream
by John Bunyan (1628-1688)
Auburn: Derby and Miller.
Buffalo: Geo. H. Derby and Co. 1853
Author's Apology for his Book
The First Stage. --Christian's deplorable condition--Evangelist
directs him--Obstinate and Pliable--Slough of Despond--Worldly
Wiseman--Mount Sinai--Conversation with Evangelist
The Second Stage. --The Gate--conversation with Good-Will--the
Interpreter's House--Christian entertained--the sights there shown him
The Third Stage. --Loses his burden at the Cross--Simple, Sloth,
Presumption, Formalist, Hypocrisy--hill Difficulty--the Arbor--misses
his roll--the palace Beautiful--the lions--talk with Discretion, Piety,
Prudence, and Charity--wonders shown to Christian--he is armed
The Fourth Stage. --Valley of Humiliation--conflict with
Apollyon--Valley of the Shadow of Death--Giants Pope and Pagan
The Fifth Stage. --Discourse with Faithful--Talkative and
The Sixth Stage. --Evangelist overtakes Christian and
Faithful--Vanity Fair--the Pilgrims brought to trial--Faithful's
The Seventh Stage. --Christian and Hopeful--By-ends and his
companions--plain of Ease--Lucre-hill--Demas--the River of
Life--Vain-Confidence--Giant Despair--the Pilgrims beaten--the
Dungeon--the Key of Promise
The Eighth Stage. --The Delectable Mountains--entertained by the
Shepherds--a by-way to Hell
The Ninth Stage. --Christian and Hopeful meet
Ignorance--Turn-away--Little-Faith--the Flatterer--the net--chastised
by a Shining One--Atheist--Enchanted Ground--Hopeful's account of his
conversion--discourse of Christian and Ignorance
The Tenth Stage. --Talk of Christian and Hopeful--Temporary--the
backslider--the land of Beulah--Christian and Hopeful pass the
River--welcome to the Celestial city
Conclusion of Part First
The Author's Way
To the Reader
The First Stage. --Christiana and Mercy--Slough of
Despond--knocking at the gate--the Dog--talk between the Pilgrims
The Second Stage. --The Devil's garden--two ill-favored ones
assault them--the Reliever--entertainment at the Interpreter's
house--the Significant Rooms--Christiana and Mercy's experience
The Third Stage. --Accompanied by Great-Heart--the Cross--justified
by Christ--Sloth and his companions hung--the hill Difficulty--the
The Fourth Stage. --The Lions--Giant Grim slain by Great-Heart--the
Pilgrims entertained--the children catechized by Prudence--Mr.
Brisk--Matthew sick--the remedy--sights shown the Pilgrims
The Fifth Stage. --Valley of Humiliation--Valley of the Shadow of
Death--Giant Maul slain
The Sixth Stage. --Discourse with Old Honest--character and history
of Mr. Fearing--Mr. Self-will and some professors--Gaius'
house--conversation--the supper--Old Honest and Great-Heart's riddles
and discourse--Giant Slay-good killed--Mr. Feeble-mind's history--Mr.
Ready-to-halt--Vanity Fair--Mr. Mnason's house--cheering entertainment
and converse--a Monster
The Seventh Stage. --Hill Lucre--River of Life--Giant Despair
killed--the Delectable Mountains--entertainment by the Shepherds
The Eighth Stage. --Valiant-for-Truth's-Victory--his talk with
Great-Heart--the Enchanted Ground--Heedless and Too-bold--Mr.
Stand-fast--Madam Bubble's temptations--the land of Beulah--Christiana
summoned--her parting addresses--she passes the River--she is followed
by Ready-to-halt, Feeble-mind, Despondency and his daughter, Honest,
THE AUTHOR'S APOLOGY
FOR HIS BOOK
WHEN at the first I took my pen in hand
Thus for to write, I did not understand
That I at all should make a little book
In such a mode: nay, I had undertook
To make another; which, when almost done,
Before I was aware I this begun.
And thus it was: I, writing of the way
And race of saints in this our gospel-day,
Fell suddenly into an allegory
About their journey, and the way to glory,
In more than twenty things which I set down
This done, I twenty more had in my crown,
And they again began to multiply,
Like sparks that from the coals of fire do fly.
Nay, then, thought I, if that you breed so fast,
I'll put you by yourselves, lest you at last
Should prove ad infinitum,  and eat out
The book that I already am about.
Well, so I did; but yet I did not think
To show to all the world my pen and ink
In such a mode; I only thought to make
I knew not what: nor did I undertake
Thereby to please my neighbor; no, not I;
I did it my own self to gratify.
Neither did I but vacant seasons spend
In this my scribble; nor did I intend
But to divert myself, in doing this,
From worser thoughts, which make me do amiss.
Thus I set pen to paper with delight,
And quickly had my thoughts in black and white;
For having now my method by the end,
Still as I pull'd, it came; and so I penned
It down; until it came at last to be,
For length and breadth, the bigness which you see.
Well, when I had thus put mine ends together
I show'd them others, that I might see whether
They would condemn them, or them justify:
And some said, let them live; some, let them die:
Some said, John, print it; others said, Not so:
Some said, It might do good; others said, No.
Now was I in a strait, and did not see
Which was the best thing to be done by me:
At last I thought, Since ye are thus divided,
I print it will; and so the case decided.
For, thought I, some I see would have it done,
Though others in that channel do not run:
To prove, then, who advised for the best,
Thus I thought fit to put it to the test.
I further thought, if now I did deny
Those that would have it, thus to gratify;
I did not know, but hinder them I might
Of that which would to them be great delight.
For those which were not for its coming forth,
I said to them, Offend you, I am loath;
Yet since your brethren pleased with it be,
Forbear to judge, till you do further see.
If that you wilt not read, let it alone;
Some love the meat, some love to pick the bone.
Yea, that I might them better palliate,
I did too with them thus expostulate:
May I not write in such a style as this?
In such a method too, and yet not miss
My end-your good? Why may it not be done?
Dark clouds bring waters, when the bright bring none.
Yea, dark or bright, if they their silver drops
Cause to descend, the earth, by yielding crops,
Gives praise to both, and carps not at either,
But treasures up the fruit they yield together;
Yea, so commixes both, that in their fruit
None can distinguish this from that; they suit
Her well when hungry; but if she be full,
She spews out both, and makes their blessing null.
You see the ways the fisherman does take
To catch the fish; what engines does he make!
Behold how he engages all his wits;
Also his snares, lines, angles, hooks, and nets:
Yet fish there be, that neither hook nor line,
Nor snare, nor net, nor engine can make your.
They must be groped for, and be tickled too,
Or they will not be catch'd, whate'er you do.
How does the fowler seek to catch his game
By divers means! all which one cannot name.
His guns, his nets, his lime-twigs, light and bell:
He creeps, he goes, he stands; yea, who can tell
Of all his postures? yet there's none of these
Will make him master of what fowls he please.
Yea, he must pipe and whistle, to catch this;
Yet if he does so, that bird he will miss.
If that a pearl may in toad's head dwell,
And may be found too in an oyster-shell;
If things that promise nothing, do contain
What better is than gold; who will disdain,
That have an inkling  of it, there to look,
That they may find it. Now my little book,
(Though void of all these paintings that may make
It with this or the other man to take,)
Is not without those things that do excel
What do in brave but empty notions dwell.
"Well, yet I am not fully satisfied
That this your book will stand, when soundly tried."
Why, what's the matter? "It is dark." What though?
"But it is feigned." What of that? I think
some men by feigned words, as dark as mine,
Make truth to spangle, and its rays to shine.
"But they want solidness." Speak, man, your mind.
"They drown the weak; metaphors make us blind."
Solidity, indeed, becomes the pen
Of him that writes things divine to men:
But must I needs want solidness, because
By metaphors I speak? Were not God's laws,
His gospel laws, in olden time held forth
By types, shadows, and metaphors? Yet loth
Will any sober man be to find fault
With them, lest he be found for to assault
The highest wisdom! No, he rather stoops,
And seeks to find out what, by pins and loops,
By calves and sheep, by heifers, and by rams,
By birds and herbs, and by the blood of lambs,
God speaks to him; and happy is he
That finds the light and grace that in them be.
But not too forward, therefore, to conclude
That I want solidness--that I am rude;
All things solid in show, not solid be;
All things in parable despise not we,
Lest things most hurtful lightly we receive,
And things that good are, of our souls bereave.
My dark and cloudy words they do but hold
The truth, as cabinets inclose the gold.
The prophets used much by metaphors
To set forth truth: yea, who so considers
Christ, his apostles too, shall plainly see,
That truths to this day in such mantles be.
Am I afraid to say, that holy writ,
Which for its style and phrase puts down all wit,
Is everywhere so full of all these things,
Dark figures, allegories? Yet there springs
From that same book, that lustre, and those rays
Of light, that turn our darkest nights to days.
Come, let my carper to his life now look,
And find there darker lines than in my book
He finds any; yea, and let him know,
That in his best things there are worse lines too.
May we but stand before impartial men,
To his poor one I durst adventure ten,
That they will take my meaning in these lines
Far better than his lies in silver shrines.
Come, truth, although in swaddling-clothes, I find
Informs the judgment, rectifies the mind;
Pleases the understanding, makes the will
Submit, the memory too it does fill
With what does our imagination please;
Likewise it tends our troubles to appease.
Sound words, I know, Timothy is to use,
And old wives' fables he is to refuse;
But yet grave Paul him nowhere does forbid
The use of parables, in which lay hid
That gold, those pearls, and precious stones that were
Worth digging for, and that with greatest care.
Let me add one word more. O man of God,
Are you offended? Dost you wish I had
Put forth my matter in another dress?
Or that I had in things been more express?
Three things let me propound; then I submit
To those that are my betters, as is fit.
1. I find not that I am denied the use
Of this my method, so I no abuse
Put on the words, things, readers, or be rude
In handling figure or similitude,
In application; but all that I may
Seek the advance of truth this or that way.
Denied, did I say? Nay, I have leave,
(Example too, and that from them that have
God better pleased, by their words or ways,
Than any man that breaths now-a-days,)
Thus to express my mind, thus to declare
Things unto you that excellentest are.
2. I find that men as high as trees will write
Dialogue-wise; yet no man does them slight
For writing so. Indeed, if they abuse
Truth, cursed be they, and the craft they use
To that intent; but yet let truth be free
To make her sallies upon you and me,
Which way it pleases God: for who knows how,
Better than he that taught us first to plough,
To guide our minds and pens for his designs?
And he makes base things usher in divine.
3. I find that holy writ, in many places,
Hath semblance with this method, where the cases
Do call for one thing to set forth another:
Use it I may then, and yet nothing smother
Truth's golden beams: nay, by this method may
Make it cast forth its rays as light as day.
And now, before I do put up my pen,
I'll show the profit of my book; and then
Commit both you and it unto that hand
That pulls the strong down, and makes weak ones stand.
This book it chalks out before your eyes
The man that seeks the everlasting prize:
It shows you whence he comes, whither he goes,
What he leaves undone; also what he does:
It also shows you how he runs, and runs,
Till he unto the gate of glory comes.
It shows, too, who set out for life amain,
As if the lasting crown they would obtain;
Here also you may see the reason why
They lose their labor, and like fools do die.
This book will make a traveler of you,
If by its counsel you wilt ruled be;
It will direct you to the Holy Land,
If you wilt its directions understand
Yea, it will make the slothful active be;
The blind also delightful things to see.
Are you for something rare and profitable?
Or would you see a truth within a fable?
Are you forgetful? Would you remember
From New-Year's day to the last of December?
Then read my fancies; they will stick like burs,
And may be, to the helpless, comforters.
This book is writ in such a dialect
As may the minds of listless men affect:
It seems a novelty, and yet contains
Nothing but sound and honest gospel strains.
Would you divert yourself from melancholy?
Would you be pleasant, yet be far from folly?
Would you read riddles, and their explanation?
Or else be drowned in your contemplation?
Dost you love picking meat? Or would you see
A man i' the clouds, and hear him speak to you?
Would you be in a dream, and yet not sleep?
Or would you in a moment laugh and weep?
Would you lose yourself and catch no harm,
And find yourself again without a charm?
Would read yourself, and read you know not what,
And yet know whether you are blest or not,
By reading the same lines? O then come hither,
And lay my book, your head, and heart together.
 Without end.
 Hint, whisper, insinuation.
THE FIRST STAGE
As I walked through the wilderness of this world, I lighted on a
certain place where was a den,  and laid me down in that place to
sleep; and as I slept, I dreamed a dream. I dreamed, and behold, I saw
a man clothed with rags, standing in a certain place, with his face
from his own house, a book in his hand, and a great burden upon his
back. Isa 64:6; Luke 14:33; Psalm 38:4. I looked and saw him open the
book, and read therein; and as he read, he wept and trembled; and not
being able longer to contain, he brake out with a lamentable cry,
saying, "What shall I do?" Acts 2:37; 16:30; Habak 1:2,3.
In this plight, therefore, he went home, and restrained himself as long
as he could, that his wife and children should not perceive his
distress; but he could not be silent long, because that his trouble
increased. Wherefore at length he brake his mind to his wife and
children; and thus he began to talk to them: "O, my dear wife," said
he, "and you the children of my bowels, I, your dear friend, am in
myself undone by reason of a burden that lieth hard upon me; moreover,
I am certainly informed that this our city will be burnt with fire from
heaven; in which fearful overthrow, both myself, with you my wife, and
you my sweet babes, shall miserably come to ruin, except (the which yet
I see not) some way of escape can be found whereby we may be
delivered." At this his relations were sore amazed; not for that they
believed that what he had said to them was true, but because they
thought that some frenzy distemper had got into his head; therefore, it
drawing towards night, and they hoping that sleep might settle his
brains, with all haste they got him to bed. But the night was as
troublesome to him as the day; wherefore, instead of sleeping, he spent
it in sighs and tears. So when the morning was come, they would know
how he did. He told them, "Worse and worse:" he also set to talking to
them again; but they began to be hardened. They also thought to drive
away his distemper by harsh and surly carriage to him; sometimes they
would deride, sometimes they would chide, and sometimes they would
quite neglect him. Wherefore he began to retire himself to his chamber
to pray for and pity them, and also to condole his own misery; he would
also walk solitarily in the fields, sometimes reading, and sometimes
praying: and thus for some days he spent his time.
Now I saw, upon a time, when he was walking in the fields, that he was
(as he was wont) reading in his book, and greatly distressed in his
mind; and as he read, he burst out, as he had done before, crying,
"What shall I do to be saved?" Acts 16:30,31.
I saw also that he looked this way, and that way, as if he would run;
yet he stood still because (as I perceived) he could not tell which way
to go. I looked then, and saw a man named Evangelist coming to him, and
he asked, "Wherefore dost you cry?"
He answered, "Sir, I perceive, by the book in my hand, that I am
condemned to die, and after that to come to judgment, Heb. 9:27; and I
find that I am not willing to do the first, Job 10: 21,22, nor able to
do the second." Ezek. 22:14.
Then said Evangelist, "Why not willing to die, since this life is
attended with so many evils?" The man answered, "Because, I fear that
this burden that is upon my back will sink me lower than the grave, and
I shall fall into Tophet. Isa. 30:33. And Sir, if I be not fit to go to
prison, I am not fit to go to judgment, and from thence to execution;
and the thoughts of these things make me cry."
Then said Evangelist, "If this be your condition, why stand you
still?" He answered, "Because I know not whither to go." Then he gave
him a parchment roll, and there was written within, "Fly from the wrath
to come." Matt. 3:7.
The man therefore read it, and looking upon Evangelist very carefully,
said, "Whither must I fly?" Then said Evangelist, (pointing with his
finger over a very wide field,) "Do you see yonder wicket-gate?" Matt.
7:13,14. The man said, "No." Then said the other, "Do you see yonder
shining light?" Psalm 119:105; 2 Pet. 1:19. He said, "I think I do."
Then said Evangelist, "Keep that light in your eye, and go up directly
thereto, so shalt you see the gate; at which, when you knocks, it
shall be told you what you shalt do." So I saw in my dream that the
man began to run. Now he had not run far from his own door when his
wife and children, perceiving it, began to cry after him to return; but
the man put his fingers in his ears, and ran on crying, Life! life!
eternal life! Luke 14:26. So he looked not behind him, Gen. 19:17, but
fled towards the middle of the plain.
The neighbors also came out to see him run, Jer. 20:10; and as he ran,
some mocked, others threatened, and some cried after him to return; and
among those that did so, there were two that were resolved to fetch him
back by force. The name of the one was Obstinate and the name of the
other Pliable. Now by this time the man was got a good distance from
them; but, however, they were resolved to pursue him, which they did,
and in a little time they overtook him. Then said the man, "Neighbors,
wherefore are you come?" They said, "To persuade you to go back with
us." But he said, "That can by no means be: you dwell," said he, "in
the city of Destruction, the place also where I was born: I see it to
be so; and dying there, sooner or later, you will sink lower than the
grave, into a place that burns with fire and brimstone: be content,
good neighbors, and go along with me."
Obstinate: What, said Obstinate, and leave our friends and our comforts
Christian: Yes, said Christian, (for that was his name,) because that
all which you forsake is not worthy to be compartd with a little of
that I am seeking to enjoy, 2 Cor. 4:18; and if you will go along with
me, and hold it, you shall fare as I myself; for there, where I go, is
enough and to spart. Luke 15:17. Come away, and prove my words.
Obstinate: What are the things you seek, since you leave all the world
to find them?
Christian: I seek an inheritance incorruptible, undefiled, and that
fades not away, 1 Peter 1:4; and it is laid up in heaven, and safe
there, Heb. 11:16, to be bestowed, at the time appointed, on them that
diligently seek it. Read it so, if you will, in my book.
Obstinate: Tush, said Obstinate, away with your book; will you go back
with us or no?
Christian: No, not I, said the other, because I have laid my hand to
the plough. Luke 9:62.
Obstinate: Come then, neighbor Pliable, let us turn again, and go home
without him: there is a company of these crazy-headed coxcombs, that
when they take a fancy by the end, are wiser in their own eyes than
seven men that can render a reason.
Pliable: Then said Pliable, Don't revile; if what the good Christian
says is true, the things he looks after are better than ours: my heart
inclines to go with my neighbor.
Obstinate: What, more fools still! Be ruled by me, and go back; who
knows whither such a brain-sick fellow will lead you? Go back, go back,
and be wise.
Christian: Nay, but do you come with your neighbor Pliable; there are
such things to be had which I spoke of, and many more glories besides.
If you believe not me, read here in this book, and for the truth of
what is expressed therein, behold, all is confirmed by the blood of Him
that made it. Heb. 9: 17-21.
Pliable: Well, neighbor Obstinate, said Pliable, I begin to come to a
point; I intend to go along with this good man, and to cast in my lot
with him: but, my good companion, do you know the way to this desired
Christian: I am directed by a man whose name is Evangelist, to speed me
to a little gate that is before us, where we shall receive instructions
about the way.
Pliable: Come then, good neighbor, let us be going. Then they went both
Obstinate: And I will go back to my place, said Obstinate: I will be no
companion of such misled, fantastical fellows.
Now I saw in my dream, that when Obstinate was gone back, Christian and
Pliable went talking over the plain; and thus they began their
Christian: Come, neighbor Pliable, how do you do? I am glad you are
persuaded to go along with me. Had even Obstinate himself but felt what
I have felt of the powers and terrors of what is yet unseen, he would
not thus lightly have given us the back.
Pliable: Come, neighbor Christian, since there are none but us two
here, tell me now farther, what the things are, and how to be enjoyed,
whither we are going.
Christian: I can better conceive of them with my mind, than speak of
them with my tongue: but yet, since you are desirous to know, I will
read of them in my book.
Pliable: And do you think that the words of your book are certainly
Christian: Yes, verily; for it was made by Him that cannot lie. Tit.
Pliable: Well said; what things are they?
Christian: There is an endless kingdom to be inhabited, and everlasting
life to be given us, that we may inhabit that kingdom for ever. Isa.
65:17; John 10: 27-29.
Pliable: Well said; and what else?
Christian: There are crowns of glory to be given us; and garments that
will make us shine like the sun in the firmament of heaven. 2 Tim. 4:8;
Rev. 22:5; Matt. 13:43.
Pliable: This is very pleasant; and what else?
Christian: There shall be no more crying, nor sorrow; for he that is
owner of the place will wipe all tears from our eyes. Isa. 25:8; Rev
7:16, 17; 21:4.
Pliable: And what company shall we have there?
Christian: There we shall be with seraphims and cherubims, Isaiah 6:2;
1 Thess. 4:16,17; Rev. 5:11; creatures that will dazzle your eyes to
look on them. There also you shall meet with thousands and ten
thousands that have gone before us to that place; none of them are
hurtful, but loving and holy; every one walking in the sight of God,
and standing in his presence with acceptance for ever. In a word, there
we shall see the elders with their golden crowns, Rev. 4:4; there we
shall see the holy virgins with their golden harps, Rev. 14:1-5; there
we shall see men, that by the world were cut in pieces, burnt in
flames, eaten of beasts, drowned in the seas, for the love they bare to
the Lord of the place, John 12:25; all well, and clothed with
immortality as with a garment. 2 Cor. 5:2.
Pliable: The hearing of this is enough to ravish one's heart. But are
these things to be enjoyed? How shall we get to be sharers thereof?
Christian: The Lord, the governor of the country, hath recorded that in
this book, Isaiah 55:1,2; John 6:37; 7:37; Rev. 21:6; 22:17; the
substance of which is, if we be truly willing to have it, he will
bestow it upon us freely.
Pliable: Well, my good companion, glad am I to hear of these things:
come on, let us mend our pace.
Christian: I cannot go as fast as I would, by reason of this burden
that is on my back.
Now I saw in my dream, that just as they had ended this talk, they drew
nigh to a very miry slough that was in the midst of the plain: and they
being heedless, did both fall suddenly into the bog. The name of the
slough was Despond. Here, therefore, they wallowed for a time, being
grievously bedaubed with the dirt; and Christian, because of the burden
that was on his back, began to sink in the mire.
Pliable: Then said Pliable, Ah, neighbor Christian, where are you now?
Christian: Truly, said Christian, I do not know.
Pliable: At this Pliable began to be offended, and angrily said to his
fellow, Is this the happiness you have told me all this while of? If we
have such ill speed at our first setting out, what may we expect
between this and our journey's end? May I get out again with my life,
you shall possess the brave country alone for me. And with that he gave
a desperate struggle or two, and got out of the mire on that side of
the slough which was next to his own house: so away he went, and
Christian saw him no more.
Wherefore Christian was left to tumble in the Slough of Despond alone;
but still he endeavored to struggle to that side of the slough that was
farehest from his own house, and next to the wicket-gate; the which he
did, but could not get out because of the burden that was upon his
back: but I beheld in my dream, that a man came to him, whose name was
Help, and asked him what he did there.
Christian: Sir, said Christian, I was bid to go this way by a man
called Evangelist, who directed me also to yonder gate, that I might
escape the wrath to come. And as I was going thither, I fell in here.
Help: But why did not you look for the steps?
Christian: Fear followed me so hard that I fled the next way, and fell
Help: Then, said he, Give me your hand: so he gave him his hand, and
he drew him out, Psalm 40:2, and he set him upon sound ground, and bid
him go on his way.
Then I stepped to him that plucked him out, and said, "Sir, wherefore,
since over this place is the way from the city of Destruction to yonder
gate, is it, that this plat is not mended, that poor travellers might
go thither with more security?" And he said unto me, "This miry slough
is such a place as cannot be mended: it is the descent whither the scum
and filth that attends conviction for sin does continually run, and
therefore it is called the Slough of Despond; for still, as the sinner
is awakened about his lost condition, there arise in his soul many
fears and doubts, and discouraging apprehensions, which all of them get
together, and settle in this place: and this is the reason of the
badness of this ground.
"It is not the pleasure of the King that this place should remain so
bad. Isa. 35:3,4. His laborers also have, by the direction of his
Majesty's surveyors, been for above this sixteen hundred years employed
about this patch of ground, if perhaps it might have been mended: yea,
and to my knowledge," said he, "there have been swallowed up at least
twenty thousand care loads, yea, millions of wholesome instructions,
that have at all seasons been brought from all places of the King's
dominions, (and they that can tell, say, they are the best materials to
make good ground of the place,) if so be it might have been mended; but
it is the Slough of Despond still, and so will be when they have done
what they can.
"True, there are, by the direction of the Lawgiver, certain good and
substantial steps, placed even through the very midst of this slough;
but at such time as this place does much spew out its filth, as it does
against change of weather, these steps are hardly seen; or if they be,
men, through the dizziness of their heads, step beside, and then they
are bemired to purpose, notwithstanding the steps be there: but the
ground is good when they are once got in at the gate." 1 Sam. 12:23.
Now I saw in my dream, that by this time Pliable was got home to his
house. So his neighbors came to visit him; and some of them called him
wise man for coming back, and some called him fool for hazarding
himself with Christian: others again did mock at his cowardliness,
saying, "Surely, since you began to venture, I would not have been so
base as to have given out for a few difficulties:" so Pliable sat
sneaking among them. But at last he got more confidence, and then they
all turned their tales, and began to deride poor Christian behind his
back. And thus much concerning Pliable.
Now as Christian was walking solitary by himself, he espied one afar
off come crossing over the field to meet him; and their hap was to meet
just as they were crossing the way of each other. The gentleman's name
that met him was Mr. Worldly Wiseman: he dwelt in the town of Carnal
Policy, a very great town, and also hard by from whence Christian came.
This man then, meeting with Christian, and having some inkling  of
him, (for Christian's setting forth from the city of Destruction was
much noised abroad, not only in the town where he dwelt, but also it
began to be the town-talk in some other places)--Mr. Worldly Wiseman,
therefore, having some guess of him, by beholding his laborious going,
by observing his sighs and groans, and the like, began thus to enter
into some talk with Christian.
Mr. Worldly Wiseman: How now, good fellow, whither away after this
Christian: A burdened manner indeed, as ever I think poor creature had!
And whereas you ask me, Whither away? I tell you, sir, I am going to
yonder wicket-gate before me; for there, as I am informed, I shall be
put into a way to be rid of my heavy burden.
Mr. Worldly Wiseman: Hast you a wife and children?
Christian: Yes; but I am so laden with this burden, that I cannot take
that pleasure in them as formerly: methinks I am as if I had none. 1
Mr. Worldly Wiseman: Wilt you hearken to me, if I give you counsel?
Christian: If it be good, I will; for I stand in need of good counsel.
Mr. Worldly Wiseman: I would advise you, then, that you with all
speed get yourself rid of your burden; for you wilt never be settled in
your mind till then: nor canst you enjoy the benefits of the blessings
which God hath bestowed upon you till then.
Christian: That is that which I seek for, even to be rid of this heavy
burden: but get it off myself I cannot, nor is there any man in our
country that can take it off my shoulders; therefore am I going this
way, as I told you, that I may be rid of my burden.
Mr. Worldly Wiseman: Who bid you go this way to be rid of your burden?
Christian: A man that appeared to me to be a very great and honorable
person: his name, as I remember, is Evangelist.
Mr. Worldly Wiseman: I beshrew  him for his counsel! there is not a
more dangerous and troublesome way in the world than is that into which
he hath directed you; and that you shalt find, if you will be ruled
by his counsel. You hast met with something, as I perceive, already;
for I see the dirt of the Slough of Despond is upon you: but that
slough is the beginning of the sorrows that do attend those that go on
in that way. Hear me; I am older than you: you are like to meet with,
in the way which you go, wearisomeness, painfulness, hunger,
perils, nakedness, sword, lions, dragons, darkness, and, in a word,
death, and what not. These things are certainly true, having been
confirmed by many testimonies. And should a man so carelessly cast away
himself, by giving heed to a stranger?
Christian: Why, sir, this burden on my back is more terrible to me than
are all these things which you have mentioned: nay, methinks I care not
what I meet with in the way, if so be I can also meet with deliverance
from my burden.
Mr. Worldly Wiseman: How came you by your burden at first?
Christian: By reading this book in my hand.
Mr. Worldly Wiseman: I thought so; and it has happened unto you as to
other weak men, who, meddling with things too high for them, do
suddenly fall into your distractions; which distractions do not only
unman men, as your I perceive have done you, but they run them upon
desperate ventures, to obtain they know not what.
Christian: I know what I would obtain; it is ease from my heavy burden.
Mr. Worldly Wiseman: But why wilt you seek for ease this way, seeing
so many dangers attend it? especially since (had you but patience to
hear me) I could direct you to the obtaining of what you desire,
without the dangers that you in this way wilt run yourself into. Yea,
and the remedy is at hand. Besides, I will add, that instead of those
dangers, you shalt meet with much safety, friendship, and content.
Christian: Sir, I pray open this secret to me.
Mr. Worldly Wiseman: Why, in yonder village (the village is named
Morality) there dwells a gentleman whose name is Legality, a very
judicious man, and a man of a very good name, that has skill to help
men off with such burdens as your is from their shoulders; yea to my
knowledge, he hath done a great deal of good this way; aye, and
besides, he hath skill to cure those that are somewhat crazed in their
wits with their burdens. To him, as I said, you may go, and be
helped presently. His house is not quite a mile from this place; and if
he should not be at home himself, he hath a pretty young man to his
son, whose name is Civility, that can do it (to speak on) as well as
the old gentleman himself: there, I say, you may be eased of your
burden; and if you are not minded to go back to your former habitation,
(as indeed I would not wish you,) you may send for your wife and
children to this village, where there are houses now standing empty,
one of which you may have at a reasonable rate: provision is there
also cheap and good; and that which will make your life the more happy
is, to be sure there you shalt live by honest neighbors, in credit and
Now was Christian somewhat at a stand; but presently he concluded, If
this be true which this gentleman hath said, my wisest course is to
take his advice: and with that he thus farther spake.
Christian: Sir, which is my way to this honest man's house?
Mr. Worldly Wiseman: Do you see yonder high hill?
Christian: Yes, very well.
Mr. Worldly Wiseman: By that hill you must go, and the first house you
come at is his.
So Christian turned out of his way to go to Mr. Legality's house for
help: but, behold, when he was got now hard by the hill, it seemed so
high, and also that side of it that was next the way-side did hang so
much over, that Christian was afraid to venture further, lest the hill
should fall on his head; wherefore there he stood still, and wotted not
what to do. Also his burden now seemed heavier to him than while he was
in his way. There came also flashes of fire, Ex. 19:16, 18, out of the
hill, that made Christian afraid that he should be burnt: here
therefore he did sweat and quake for fear. Heb. 12:21. And now he began
to be sorry that he had taken Mr. Worldly Wiseman's counsel; and with
that he saw Evangelist coming to meet him, at the sight also of whom he
began to blush for shame. So Evangelist drew nearer and nearer; and
coming up to him, he looked upon him, with a severe and dreadful
countenance, and thus began to reason with Christian.
Evangelist: What does you here, Christian? said he: at which words
Christian knew not what to answer; wherefore at present he stood
speechless before him. Then said Evangelist farther, Are not you the
man that I found crying without the walls of the city of Destruction?
Christian: Yes, dear sir, I am the man.
Evangelist: Did not I direct you the way to the little wicket-gate?
Christian: Yes, dear sir, said Christian.
Evangelist: How is it then you are so quickly turned aside? For you
are now out of the way.
Christian: I met with a gentleman so soon as I had got over the Slough
of Despond, who persuaded me that I might, in the village before me,
find a man that could take off my burden.
Evangelist: What was he?
Christian: He looked like a gentleman, and talked much to me, and got
me at last to yield: so I came hither; but when I beheld this hill, and
how it hangs over the way, I suddenly made a stand, lest it should fall
on my head.
Evangelist: What said that gentleman to you?
Christian: Why, he asked me whither I was going; and I told him.
Evangelist: And what said he then?
Christian: He asked me if I had a family; and I told him. But, said I,
I am so laden with the burden that is on my back, that I cannot take
pleasure in them as formerly.
Evangelist: And what said he then?
Christian: He bid me with speed get rid of my burden; and I told him it
was ease that I sought. And, said I, I am therefore going to yonder
gate, to receive farther direction how I may get to the place of
deliverance. So he said that he would show me a better way, and short,
not so attended with difficulties as the way, sir, that you set me in;
which way, said he, will direct you to a gentleman's house that hath
skill to take off these burdens: so I believed him, and turned out of
that way into this, if haply I might be soon eased of my burden. But
when I came to this place, and beheld things as they are, I stopped,
for fear (as I said) of danger: but I now know not what to do.
Evangelist: Then said Evangelist, Stand still a little, that I show
you the words of God. So he stood trembling. Then said Evangelist,
"See that ye refuse not Him that speaks; for if they escaped not who
refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we
turn away from Him that speaks from heaven." Heb. 12:25. He said,
moreover, "Now the just shall live by faith; but if any man draw back,
my soul shall have no pleasure in him." Heb. 10:38. He also did thus
apply them: You are the man that are running into this misery; you
hast begun to reject the counsel of the Most High, and to draw back your
foot from the way of peace, even almost to the hazarding of your
Then Christian fell down at his feet as dead, crying, Woe is me, for I
am undone! At the sight of which Evangelist caught him by the right
hand, saying, "All manner of sin and blasphemies shall be forgiven unto
men." Matt. 12:31. "Be not faithless, but believing." John 20:27. Then
did Christian again a little revive, and stood up trembling, as at
first, before Evangelist.
Then Evangelist proceeded, saying, Give more earnest heed to the things
that I shall tell you of. I will now show you who it was that deluded
you, and who it was also to whom he sent you. The man that met you
is one Worldly Wiseman, and rightly is he so called; partly because he
savors only the doctrine of this world, 1 John 4:5, (therefore he
always goes to the town of Morality to church;) and partly because he
loves that doctrine best, for it saves him best from the cross, Gal.
6:12: and because he is of this carnal temper, therefore he seeks to
pervert my ways, though right. Now there are three things in this man's
counsel that you must utterly abhor.
1. His turning you out of the way.
2. His laboring to render the cross odious to you.
3. And his setting your feet in that way that leads unto the
administration of death.
First, You must abhor his turning you out of the way; yea, and your
own consenting thereto; because this is to reject the counsel of God
for the sake of the counsel of a Worldly Wiseman. The Lord says,
"Strive to enter in at the straight gate," Luke 13:24, the gate to
which I send you; "for strait is the gate that leads unto life, and
few there be that find it." Matt. 7:13,14. From this little
wicket-gate, and from the way thereto, hath this wicked man turned
you, to the bringing of you almost to destruction: hate, therefore,
his turning you out of the way, and abhor yourself for hearkening to
Secondly, You must abhor his laboring to render the cross odious unto
you; for you are to prefer it before the treasures of Egypt. Heb.
11:25,26. Besides, the King of glory hath told you, that he that will
save his life shall lose it. And he that comes after him, and hates not
his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and
sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be his disciple. Mark
8:38; John 12:25; Matt. 10:39; Luke 14:26. I say, therefore, for a man
to labor to persuade you that that shall be your death, without which,
the truth hath said, you canst not have eternal life, this doctrine
you must abhor.
Thirdly, You must hate his setting of your feet in the way that leads
to the ministration of death. And for this you must consider to whom
he sent you, and also how unable that person was to deliver you from
He to whom you were sent for ease, being by name Legality, is the son
of the bond-woman which now is, and is in bondage with her children,
Gal. 4:21-27, and is, in a mystery, this Mount Sinai, which you hast
feared will fall on your head. Now if she with her children are in
bondage, how canst you expect by them to be made free? This Legality,
therefore, is not able to set you free from your burden. No man was as
yet ever rid of his burden by him; no, nor ever is like to be: ye
cannot be justified by the works of the law; for by the deeds of the
law no man living can be rid of his burden: Therefore Mr. Worldly
Wiseman is an alien, and Mr. Legality is a cheat; and for his son
Civility, notwithstanding his simpering looks, he is but a hypocrite,
and cannot help you. Believe me, there is nothing in all this noise
that you hast heard of these sottish men, but a design to beguile you
of your salvation, by turning you from the way in which I had set you.
After this, Evangelist called aloud to the heavens for confirmation of
what he had said; and with that there came words and fire out of the
mountain under which poor Christian stood, which made the hair of his
flesh stand up. The words were pronounced: "As many as are of the works
of the law, are under the curse; for it is written, Cursed is every one
that continues not in all things which are written in the book of the
law to do them." Gal. 3:10.
Now Christian looked for nothing but death, and began to cry out
lamentably; even cursing the time in which he met with Mr. Worldly
Wiseman; still calling himself a thousand fools for hearkening to his
counsel. He also was greatly ashamed to think that this gentleman's
arguments, flowing only from the flesh, should have the prevalency with
him so far as to cause him to forsake the right way. This done, he
applied himself again to Evangelist in words and sense as follows.
Christian: Sir, what think you? Is there any hope? May I now go back,
and go up to the wicket-gate? Shall I not be abandoned for this, and
sent back from thence ashamed? I am sorry I have hearkened to this
man's counsel; but may my sin be forgiven?
Evangelist: Then said Evangelist to him, Your sin is very great, for by
it you hast committed two evils: you hast forsaken the way that is
good, to tread in forbidden paths. Yet will the man at the gate receive
you, for he has good-will for men; only, said he, take heed that you
turn not aside again, lest you "perish from the way, when his wrath is
kindled but a little." Psalm 2:12.
 Bedford jail, in which the author was imprisoned for conscience'
 Slight knowledge.
 Wish a curse to.
THE SECOND STAGE
Then did Christian address himself to go back; and Evangelist, after he
had kissed him, gave him one smile, and bid him God speed; So he went
on with haste, neither spake he to any man by the way; nor if any asked
him, would he vouchsafe them an answer. He went like one that was all
the while treading on forbidden ground, and could by no means think
himself safe, till again he was got into the way which he had left to
follow Mr. Worldly Wiseman's counsel. So, in process of time, Christian
got up to the gate. Now, over the gate there was written, "Knock, and
it shall be opened unto you." Matt. 7:7.
He knocked, therefore, more than once or twice, saying,
"May I now enter here? Will he within
Open to sorry me, though I have been
An undeserving rebel? Then shall I
Not fail to sing his lasting praise on high."
At last there came a grave person to the gate, named Goodwill, who
asked who was there, and whence he came, and what he would have.
Christian: Here is a poor burdened sinner. I come from the city of
Destruction, but am going to Mount Zion, that I may be delivered from
the wrath to come; I would therefore, sir, since I am informed that by
this gate is the way thither, know if you are willing to let me in.
Goodwill: I am willing with all my heart, said he; and with that he
opened the gate.
So when Christian was stepping in, the other gave him a pull. Then said
Christian, What means that? The other told him, A little distance from
this gate there is erected a strong castle, of which Beelzebub is the
captain: from thence both he and they that are with him, shoot arrows
at those that come up to this gate, if haply they may die before they
can enter in. Then said Christian, I rejoice and tremble. So when he
was got in, the man of the Gate asked him who directed him thither.
Christian: Evangelist bid me come hither and knock, as I did: and he
said, that you, sir, would tell me what I must do.
Goodwill: An open door is set before you, and no man can shut it.
Christian: Now I begin to reap the benefits of my hazards.
Goodwill: But how is it that you came alone?
Christian: Because none of my neighbors saw their danger as I saw mine.
Goodwill: Did any of them know of your coming?
Christian: Yes, my wife and children saw me at the first, and called
after me to turn again: also, some of my neighbors stood crying and
calling after me to return; but I put my fingers in my ears, and so
came on my way.
Goodwill: But did none of them follow you, to persuade you to go back?
Christian: Yes, both Obstinate and Pliable; but when they saw that they
could not prevail, Obstinate went railing back; but Pliable came with
me a little way.
Goodwill: But why did he not come through?
Christian: We indeed came both together until we came to the Slough of
Despond, into the which we also suddenly fell. And then was my neighbor
Pliable discouraged, and would not venture farther. Wherefore, getting
out again on the side next to his own house, he told me I should
possess the brave country alone for him: so he went his way, and I came
mine; he after Obstinate, and I to this gate.
Goodwill: Then said Goodwill, Alas, poor man; is the celestial glory of
so little esteem with him, that he counts it not worth running the
hazard of a few difficulties to obtain it?
Christian: Truly, said Christian, I have said the truth of Pliable; and
if I should also say all the truth of myself, it will appear there is
no betterment betwixt him and myself. It is true, he went back to his
own house, but I also turned aside to go in the way of death, being
persuaded thereto by the carnal arguments of one Mr. Worldly Wiseman.
Goodwill: Oh, did he light upon you? What, he would have had you seek
for ease at the hands of Mr. Legality! They are both of them a very
cheat. But did you take his counsel?
Christian: Yes, as far as I durst. I went to find out Mr. Legality,
until I thought that the mountain that stands by his house would have
fallen upon my head; wherefore there I was forced to stop.
Goodwill: That mountain has been the death of many, and will be the
death of many more: it is well you escaped being by it dashed in
Christian: Why truly I do not know what had become of me there, had not
Evangelist happily met me again as I was musing in the midst of my
dumps; but it was God's mercy that he came to me again, for else I had
never come hither. But now I am come, such a one as I am, more fit
indeed for death by that mountain, than thus to stand talking with my
Lord. But O, what a favor is this to me, that yet I am admitted
Goodwill: We make no objections against any, notwithstanding all that
they have done before they come hither; they in no wise are cast out.
John 6:37. And therefore good Christian, come a little way with me, and
I will teach you about the way you must go. Look before you; dost
you see this narrow way? That is the way you must go. It was cast up
by the patriarchs, prophets, Christ, and his apostles, and it is as
strait as a rule can make it; this is the way you must go.
Christian: But, said Christian, are there no turnings nor windings, by
which a stranger may lose his way?
Goodwill: Yes, there are many ways butt down upon this, and they are
crooked and wide: but thus you may distinguish the right from the
wrong, the right only being strait and narrow. Matt. 7:14.
Then I saw in my dream, that Christian asked him further, if he could
not help him off with his burden that was upon his back. For as yet he
had not got rid thereof; nor could he by any means get it off without
He told him, "As to your burden, be content to bear it until you come
to the place of deliverance; for there it will fall from your back of
Then Christian began to gird up his loins, and to address himself to
his journey. So the other told him, that by that he was gone some
distance from the gate, he would come to the house of the Interpreter,
at whose door he should knock, and he would show him excellent things.
Then Christian took his leave of his friend, and he again bid him God
Then he went on till he came at the house of the Interpreter,  where
he knocked over and over. At last one came to the door, and asked who
Christian: Sir, here is a traveller, who was bid by an acquaintance of
the good man of this house to call here for my profit; I would
therefore speak with the master of the house.
So he called for the master of the house, who, after a little time,
came to Christian, and asked him what he would have.
Christian: Sir, said Christian, I am a man that am come from the city
of Destruction, and am going to the Mount Zion; and I was told by the
man that stands at the gate at the head of this way, that if I called
here you would show me excellent things, such as would be helpful to me
on my journey.
Interpreter: Then said Interpreter, Come in; I will show you that
which will be profitable to you. So he commanded his man to light the
candle, and bid Christian follow him; so he had him into a private
room, and bid his man open a door; the which when he had done,
Christian saw the picture a very grave person hang up against the wall;
and this was the fashion of it: It had eyes lifted up to heaven, the
best of books in his hand, the law of truth was written upon its lips,
the world was behind its back; it stood as if it pleaded with men, and
a crown of gold did hang over its head.
Christian: Then said Christian, What means this?
Interpreter: The man whose picture this is, is one of a thousand: he
can beget children, 1 Cor. 4:15, travail in birth with children, Gal.
4:19, and nurse them himself when they are born. And whereas you see
him with his eyes lift up to heaven, the best of books in his hand, and
the law of truth writ on his lips: it is to show you, that his work is
to know, and unfold dark things to sinners; even as also you see him
stand as if he pleaded with men. And whereas you see the world as
cast behind him, and that a crown hangs over his head; that is to show
you, that slighting and despising the things that are present, for the
love that he hath to his Master's service, he is sure in the world that
comes next, to have glory for his reward. Now, said the Interpreter, I
have showed you this picture first, because the man whose picture this
is, is the only man whom the Lord of the place whither you are going
hath authorized to be your guide in all difficult places you may
meet with in the way: wherefore take good heed to what I have showed
you, and bear well in your mind what you hast seen, lest in your
journey you meet with some that pretend to lead you right, but their
way goes down to death.
Then he took him by the hand, and led him into a very large parlor that
was full of dust, because never swept; the which after he had reviewed
it a little while, the Interpreter called for a man to sweep. Now, when
he began to sweep, the dust began so abundantly to fly about, that
Christian had almost therewith been choked. Then said the Interpreter
to a damsel that stood by, "Bring hither water, and sprinkle the room;"
the which when she had done, it was swept and cleansed with pleasure.
Christian: Then said Christian, What means this?
Interpreter: The Interpreter answered, This parlor is the heart of a
man that was never sanctified by the sweet grace of the Gospel. The
dust is his original sin, and inward corruptions, that have defiled the
whole man. He that began to sweep at first, is the law; but she that
brought water, and did sprinkle it, is the Gospel. Now whereas you
saw, that so soon as the first began to sweep, the dust did so fly
about that the room by him could not be cleansed, but that you were
almost choked therewith; this is to show you, that the law, instead of
cleansing the heart (by its working) from sin, does revive, Rom. 7:9,
put strength into, 1 Cor. 15:56, and increase it in the soul, Rom.
5:20, even as it does discover and forbid it; for it does not give
power to subdue. Again, as you saw the damsel sprinkle the room
with water, upon which it was cleansed with pleasure, this is to show
you, that when the Gospel comes in the sweet and precious influences
thereof to the heart, then, I say, even as you saw the damsel lay
the dust by sprinkling the floor with water, so is sin vanquished and
subdued, and the soul made clean, through the faith of it, and
consequently fit for the King of glory to inhabit. John 15:3; Eph.
5:26; Acts 15:9; Rom. 16:25,26.
I saw moreover in my dream, that the Interpreter took him by the hand,
and had him into a little room, where sat two little children, each one
in his chair. The name of the eldest was Passion, and the name of the
other Patience. Passion seemed to be much disconted, but Patience was
very quiet. Then Christian asked, "What is the reason of the discontent
of Passion?" The Interpreter answered, "The governor of them would have
him stay for his best things till the beginning of the next year, but
he will have all now; but Patience is willing to wait."
Then I saw that one came to Passion, and brought him a bag of treasure,
and poured it down at his feet: the which he took up, and rejoiced
therein, and withal laughed Patience to scorn. But I beheld but a
while, and he had lavished all away, and had nothing left him but rags.
Christian: Then said Christian to the Interpreter, Expound this matter
more fully to me.
Interpreter: So he said, These two lads are figures; Passion of the men
of this world, and Patience of the men of that which is to come; for,
as here you see, passion will have all now, this year, that is to
say, in this world; so are the men of this world: They must have all
their good things now; they cannot stay till the next year, that is,
until the next world, for their portion of good. That proverb, "A bird
in the hand is worth two in the bush," is of more authority with them
than are all the divine testimonies of the good of the world to come.
But as you saw that he had quickly lavished all away, and had
presently left him nothing but rags, so will it be with all such men at
the end of this world.
Christian: Then said Christian, Now I see that Patience has the best
wisdom, and that upon many accounts. 1. Because he stays for the best
things. 2. And also because he will have the glory of his, when the
other has nothing but rags.
Interpreter: Nay, you may add another, to wit, the glory of the next
world will never wear out; but these are suddenly gone. Therefore
Passion had not so much reason to laugh at Patience because he had his
good things first, as Patience will have to laugh at Passion because he
had his best things last; for first must give place to last, because
last must have his time to come: but last gives place to nothing, for
there is not another to succeed. He, therefore, that hath his portion
first, must needs have a time to spend it; but he that hath his portion
last, must have it lastingly: therefore it is said of Dives, "In your
lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil
things; but now he is comforted, and you are tormented." Luke 16:25.
Christian: Then I perceive it is not best to covet things that are now,
but to wait for things to come.
Interpreter: You say truth: for the things that are seen are temporal,
but the things that are not seen are eternal. 2 Cor. 4:18. But though
this be so, yet since things present and our fleshly appetite are such
near neighbors one to another; and again, because things to come and
carnal sense are such strangers one to another; therefore it is, that
the first of these so suddenly fall into amity, and that distance is so
continued between the second.
Then I saw in my dream, that the Interpreter took Christian by the
hand, and led him into a place where was a fire burning against a wall,
and one standing by it, always casting much water upon it, to quench
it; yet did the fire burn higher and hotter.
Then said Christian, What means this?
The Interpreter answered, This fire is the work of grace that is
wrought in the heart; he that casts water upon it, to extinguish and
put it out, is the devil: but in that you see the fire,
notwithstanding, burn higher and hotter, you shalt also see the reason
of that. So he had him about to the back side of the wall, where he saw
a man with a vessel of oil in his hand, of the which he did also
continually cast (but secretly) into the fire.
Then said Christian, What means this?
The Interpreter answered, This is Christ, who continually, with the oil
of his grace, maintains the work already begun in the heart; by the
means of which, notwithstanding what the devil can do, the souls of his
people prove gracious still. 2 Cor. 12:9. And in that you saw that
the man stood behind the wall to maintain the fire; this is to teach
you, that it is hard for the tempted to see how this work of grace is
maintained in the soul.
I saw also, that the Interpreter took him again by the hand, and led
him into a pleasant place, where was built a stately palace, beautiful
to behold; at the sight of which Christian was greatly delighted. He
saw also upon the top thereof certain persons walking, who were clothed
all in gold.
Then said Christian may we go in thither?
Then the Interpreter took him, and led him up towards the door of the
palace; and behold, at the door stood a great company of men, as
desirous to go in, but durst not. There also sat a man at a little
distance from the door, at a table-side, with a book and his inkhorn
before him, to take the names of them that should enter therein; he saw
also that in the doorway stood many men in armor to keep it, being
resolved to do to the men that would enter, what hurt and mischief they
could. Now was Christian somewhat in amaze. At last, when every man
stareed back for fear of the armed men, Christian saw a man of a very
stout countenance come up to the man that sat there to write, saying,
"Set down my name, sir;" the which when he had done, he saw the man
draw his sword, and put a helmet on his head, and rush towards the door
upon the armed men, who laid upon him with deadly force; but the man,
not at all discouraged, fell to cutting and hacking most fiercely. So
after he had received and given many wounds to those that attempted to
keep him out, Matt. 11:12; Acts 14:22; he cut his way through them all,
and pressed forward into the palace; at which there was a pleasant
voice heard from those that were within, even of those that walked upon
the top of the palace, saying,
"Come in, come in,
Eternal glory you shalt win."
So he went in, and was clothed with such garments as they. Then
Christian smiled, and said, I think verily I know the meaning of this.
Now, said Christian, let me go hence. Nay, stay, said the Interpreter,
till I have showed you a little more, and after that you shalt go on
your way. So he took him by the hand again, and led him into a very dark
room, where there sat a man in an iron cage.
Now the man, to look on, seemed very sad; he sat with his eyes looking
down to the ground, his hands folded together, and he sighed as if he
would break his heart. Then said Christian, What means this? At which
the Interpreter bid him talk with the man.
Then said Christian to the man, What are you? The man answered, I am
what I was not once.
Christian: What wwere you once?
The Man: The man said, I was once a fair and flourishing professor,
Luke 8:13, both in mine own eyes, and also in the eyes of others: I
once was, as I thought, fair for the celestial city, and had then even
joy at the thoughts that I should get thither.
Christian: Well, but what are you now?
The Man: I am now a man of despair, and am shut up in it, as in this
iron cage. I cannot get out; Oh now I cannot!
Christian: But how came you into this condition?
The Man: I left off to watch and be sober: I laid the reins upon the
neck of my lusts; I sinned against the light of the word, and the
goodness of God; I have grieved the Spirit, and he is gone; I tempted
the devil, and he is come to me; I have provoked God to anger, and he
has left me: I have so hardened my heart, that I cannot repent.
Then said Christian to the Interpreter, But is there no hope for such a
man as this? Ask him, said the Interpreter.
Christian: Then said Christian, Is there no hope, but you must be kept
in the iron cage of despair?
The Man: No, none at all.
Christian: Why, the Son of the Blessed is very pitiful.
The Man: I have crucified him to myself afresh, Heb. 6:6; I have
despised his person, Luke 19:14; I have despised his righteousness; I
have counted his blood an unholy thing; I have done despite to the
spirit of grace, Heb. 10:29: therefore I have shut myself out of all
the promises and there now remains to me nothing but threatenings,
dreadful threatenings, faithful threatenings of certain judgment and
fiery indignation, which shall devour me as an adversary.
Christian: For what did you bring yourself into this condition?
The Man: For the lusts, pleasures, and profits of this world; in the
enjoyment of which I did then promise myself much delight: but now
every one of those things also bite me, and gnaw me like a burning
Christian: But canst you not now repent and turn?
The Man: God hath denied me repentance. His word gives me no
encouragement to believe; yea, himself hath shut me up in this iron
cage: nor can all the men in the world let me out. Oh eternity!
eternity! how shall I grapple with the misery that I must meet with in
Interpreter: Then said the Interpreter to Christian, Let this man's
misery be remembered by you, and be an everlasting caution to you.
Christian: Well, said Christian, this is fearful! God help me to watch
and to be sober, and to pray that I may shun the cause of this man's
misery. Sir, is it not time for me to go on my way now?
Interpreter: Tarry till I shall show you one thing more, and then you
shalt go on your way.
So he took Christian by the hand again and led him into a chamber where
there was one rising out of bed; and as he put on his raiment, he shook
and trembled. Then said Christian, Why does this man thus tremble? The
Interpreter then bid him tell to Christian the reason of his so doing.
So he began, and said, "This night, as I was in my sleep, I dreamed,
and behold the heavens grew exceeding black; also it thundered and
lightened in most fearful wise, that it put me into an agony. So I
looked up in my dream, and saw the clouds rack at an unusual rate; upon
which I heard a great sound of a trumpet, and saw also a man sitting
upon a cloud, attended with the thousands of heaven: they were all in
flaming fire; also the heavens were in a burning flame. I heard then a
voice, saying, Arise, ye dead, and come to judgment.' And with that the
rocks rent, the graves opened, and the dead that were therein came
forth: some of them were exceeding glad, and looked upward; and some
sought to hide themselves under the mountains. Then I saw the man that
sat upon the cloud open the book, and bid the world draw near. Yet
there was, by reason of a fierce flame that issued out and came from
before him, a convenient distance between him and them, as between the
judge and the prisoners at the bar. 1 Cor. 15; 1 Thess. 4:16; Jude 15;
John 5: 28,29; 2 Thess. 1:8-10; Rev. 20:11-14; Isa. 26:21; Micah
7:16,17; Psa. 5:4; 50:1-3; Mal. 3:2,3; Dan. 7:9,10. I heard it also
proclaimed to them that attended on the man that sat on the cloud,
Gather together the tares, the chaff, and stubble, and cast them into
the burning lake.' Matt. 3:12; 18:30; 24:30; Mal. 4:1. And with that
the bottomless pit opened, just whereabout I stood; out of the mouth of
which there came, in an abundant manner, smoke, and coals of fire, with
hideous noises. It was also said to the same persons, Gather my wheat
into the garner.' Luke 3:17. And with that I saw many catched up and
carried away into the clouds, but I was left behind. 1 Thess. 4:16,17.
I also sought to hide myself, but I could not, for the man that sat
upon the cloud still kept his eye upon me; my sins also came into my
mind, and my conscience did accuse me on every side. Rom. 2:14,15. Upon
this I awakened from my sleep."
Christian: But what was it that made you so afraid of this sight?
The Man: Why, I thought that the day of judgment was come, and that I
was not ready for it: but this frightened me most, that the angels
gathered up several, and left me behind; also the pit of hell opened
her mouth just where I stood. My conscience too afflicted me; and, as I
thought, the Judge had always his eye upon me, showing indignation in
Then said the Interpreter to Christian, "Hast you considered all these
Christian: Yes, and they put me in hope and fear.
Interpreter: Well, keep all things so in your mind, that they may be as
a goad in your sides, to prick you forward in the way you must go.
Then Christian began to gird up his loins, and to address himself to
his journey. Then said the Interpreter, "The Comforter be always with
you, good Christian, to guide you in the way that leads to the city."
So Christian went on his way, saying,
"Here I have seen things rare and profitable,
Things pleasant, dreadful, things to make me stable
In what I have begun to take in hand:
Then let me think on them, and understand
Wherefore they showed me were, and let me be
Thankful, O good Interpreter, to you."
 The Holy Spirit.
THE THIRD STAGE
Now I saw in my dream, that the highway up which Christian was to go,
was fenced on either side with a wall, and that wall was called
Salvation. Isaiah 26:1. Up this way, therefore, did burdened Christian
run, but not without great difficulty, because of the load on his back.
He ran thus till he came at a place somewhat ascending; and upon that
place stood a cross, and a little below, in the bottom, a sepulchre. So
I saw in my dream, that just as Christian came up with the cross, his
burden loosed from off his shoulders, and fell from off his back, and
began to tumble, and so continued to do till it came to the mouth of
the sepulchre, where it fell in, and I saw it no more.
Then was Christian glad and lightsome, and said with a merry heart, "He
hath given me rest by his sorrow, and life by his death." Then he stood
still a while, to look and wonder; for it was very surprising to him
that the sight of the cross should thus ease him of his burden. He
looked, therefore, and looked again, even till the springs that were in
his head sent the waters down his cheeks. Zech. 12:10. Now as he stood
looking and weeping, behold, three Shining Ones came to him, and
saluted him with, "Peace be to you." So the first said to him, "Your
sins be forgiven you," Mark 2:5; the second stripped him of his rags,
and clothed him with change of raiment, Zech. 3:4; the third also set a
mark on his forehead, Eph. 1:13, and gave him a roll with a seal upon
it, which he bid him look on as he ran, and that he should give it in
at the celestial gate: so they went their way. Then Christian gave
three leaps for joy, and went on singing,
"Thus far did I come laden with my sin,
Nor could aught ease the grief that I was in,
Till I came hither. What a place is this!
Must here be the beginning of my bliss?
Must here the burden fall from off my back?
Must here the strings that bound it to me crack?
Blest cross! blest sepulchre! blest rather be
The Man that there was put to shame for me!"
I saw then in my dream, that he went on thus, even until he came at the
bottom, where he saw, a little out of the way, three men fast asleep,
with fetters upon their heels. The name of the one was Simple, of
another Sloth, and of the third Presumption.
Christian then seeing them lie in this case, went to them, if
peradventure he might awake them, and cried, you are like them that
sleep on the top of a mast, Prov. 23:34, for the Dead Sea is under you,
a gulf that hath no bottom: awake, therefore, and come away; be willing
also, and I will help you off with your irons. He also told them, If he
that goes about like a roaring lion, 1 Pet. 5:8, comes by, you will
certainly become a prey to his teeth. With that they looked upon him,
and began to reply in this sort: Simple said, I see no danger; Sloth
said, Yet a little more sleep; and Presumption said, Every tub must
stand upon its own bottom. And so they lay down to sleep again, and
Christian went on his way.
Yet he was troubled to think that men in that danger should so little
esteem the kindness of him that so freely offered to help them, both by
awakening of them, counseling of them, and proffering to help them off
with their irons. And as he was troubled thereabout, he espied two men
come tumbling over the wall, on the left hand of the narrow way; and
they made up apace to him. The name of the one was Formalist, and the
name of the other Hypocrisy. So, as I said, they drew up unto him, who
thus entered with them into discourse.
Christian: Gentlemen, whence came you, and whither do you go?
Formalist and Hypocrisy: We were born in the land of Vain-glory, and
are going, for praise, to Mount Zion.
Christian: Why came you not in at the gate which stands at the
beginning of the way? Know ye not that it is written, that "he that
cometh not in by the door, but climbs up some other way, the same is
a thief and a robber?" John 10:1.
Formalist and Hypocrisy: They said, that to go to the gate for entrance
was by all their countrymen counted too far about; and that therefore
their usual way was to make a short cut of it, and to climb over the
wall, as they had done.
Christian: But will it not be counted a trespass against the Lord of
the city whither we are bound, thus to violate his revealed will?
Formalist and Hypocrisy: They told him, that as for that, he needed not
to trouble his head thereabout: for what they did they had custom for,
and could produce, if need were, testimony that would witness it for
more than a thousand years.
Christian: But, said Christian, will you stand a trial at law?
Formalist and Hypocrisy: They told him, that custom, it being of so
long standing as above a thousand years, would doubtless now be
admitted as a thing legal by an impartial judge: and besides, said
they, if we get into the way, what matter is it which way we get in? If
we are in, we are in: you are but in the way, who, as we perceive,
came in at the gate; and we also are in the way, that came tumbling
over the wall: wherein now is your condition better than ours?
Christian: I walk by the rule of my Master: you walk by the rude
working of your fancies. You are counted thieves already by the Lord of
the way: therefore I doubt you will not be found true men at the end of
the way. You come in by yourselves without his direction, and shall go
out by yourselves without his mercy.
To this they made him but little answer; only they bid him look to
himself. Then I saw that they went on, every man in his way, without
much conference one with another, save that these two men told
Christian, that as to laws and ordinances, they doubted not but that
they should as conscientiously do them as he. Therefore, said they, we
see not wherein you differest from us, but by the coat that is on your
back, which was, as we think, given you by some of your neighbors, to
hide the shame of your nakedness.
Christian: By laws and ordinances you will not be saved, since you came
not in by the door. Gal. 2:16. And as for this coat that is on my back,
it was given me by the Lord of the place whither I go; and that, as you
say, to cover my nakedness with. And I take it as a token of kindness
to me; for I had nothing but rags before. And besides, thus I comfort
myself as I go. Surely, think I, when I come to the gate of the city,
the Lord thereof will know me for good, since I have his coat on my
back; a coat that he gave me freely in the day that he stripped me of
my rags. I have, moreover, a mark in my forehead, of which perhaps you
have taken no notice, which one of my Lord's most intimate associates
fixed there in the day that my burden fell off my shoulders. I will
tell you, moreover, that I had then given me a roll sealed, to comfort
me by reading as I go on the way; I was also bid to give it in at the
celestial gate, in token of my certain going in after it: all which
things I doubt you want, and want them because you came not in at the
To these things they gave him no answer; only they looked upon each
other, and laughed. Then I saw that they went all on, save that
Christian kept before, who had no more talk but with himself, and that
sometimes sighingly, and sometimes comfortably: also he would be often
reading in the roll that one of the Shining Ones gave him, by which he
I beheld then, that they all went on till they came to the foot of the
hill Difficulty, at the bottom of which there was a spring. There were
also in the same place two other ways besides that which came straight
from the gate: one turned to the left hand, and the other to the right,
at the bottom of the hill; but the narrow way lay right up the hill,
and the name of the going up the side of the hill is called Difficulty.
Christian now went to the spring, Isa. 49:10, and drank thereof to
refresh himself, and then began to go up the hill, saying,
"The hill, though high, I covet to ascend;
The difficulty will not me offend;
For I perceive the way to life lies here:
Come, pluck up heart, let's neither faint nor fear.
Better, though difficult, the right way to go,
Than wrong, though easy, where the end is woe."
The other two also came to the foot of the hill. But when they saw that
the hill was steep and high, and that there were two other ways to go;
and supposing also that these two ways might meet again with that up
which Christian went, on the other side of the hill; therefore they
were resolved to go in those ways. Now the name of one of those ways
was Danger, and the name of the other Destruction. So the one took the
way which is called Danger, which led him into a great wood; and the
other took directly up the way to Destruction, which led him into a
wide field, full of dark mountains, where he stumbled and fell, and
rose no more.
I looked then after Christian, to see him go up the hill, where I
perceived he fell from running to going, and from going to clambering
upon his hands and his knees, because of the steepness of the place.
Now about the midway to the top of the hill was a pleasant Arbor, made
by the Lord of the hill for the refreshment of weary travellers.
Thither, therefore, Christian got, where also he sat down to rest him:
then he pulled his roll out of his bosom, and read therein to his
comfort; he also now began afresh to take a review of the coat or
garment that was given to him as he stood by the cross. Thus pleasing
himself awhile, he at last fell into a slumber, and thence into a fast
sleep, which detained him in that place until it was almost night; and
in his sleep his roll fell out of his hand. Now, as he was sleeping,
there came one to him, and awaked him, saying, "Go to the ant, you
sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise." Prov. 6:6. And with that,
Christian suddenly stared up, and sped him on his way, and went apace
till he came to the top of the hill.
Now when he was got up to the top of the hill, there came two men
running amain; the name of the one was Timorous, and of the other
Mistrust: to whom Christian said, Sirs, what's the matter? you run the
wrong way. Timorous answered, that they were going to the city of Zion,
and had got up that difficult place: but, said he, the farther we go,
the more danger we meet with; wherefore we turned, and are going back
Yes, said Mistrust, for just before us lie a couple of lions in the
way, whether sleeping or waking we know not; and we could not think, if
we came within reach, but they would presently pull us in pieces.
Christian: Then said Christian, You make me afraid; but whither shall I
fly to be safe? If I go back to mine own country, that is prepartd for
fire and brimstone, and I shall certainly perish there; if I can get to
the celestial city, I am sure to be in safety there: I must venture. To
go back is nothing but death: to go forward is fear of death, and life
everlasting beyond it: I will yet go forward. So Mistrust and Timorous
ran down the hill, and Christian went on his way. But thinking again of
what he had heard from the men, he felt in his bosom for his roll, that
he might read therein and be comforted; but he felt, and found it not.
Then was Christian in great distress, and knew not what to do; for he
wanted that which used to relieve him, and that which should have been
his pass into the celestial city. Here, therefore, he began to be much
perplexed, and knew not what to do. At last he bethought himself that
he had slept in the arbor that is on the side of the hill; and falling
down upon his knees, he asked God forgiveness for that foolish act, and
then went back to look for his roll. But all the way he went back, who
can sufficiently set forth the sorrow of Christian's heart? Sometimes
he sighed, sometimes he wept, and oftentimes he chided himself for being
so foolish to fall asleep in that place, which was erected only for a
little refreshment from his weariness. Thus, therefore, he went back,
carefully looking on this side and on that, all the way as he went, if
happily he might find his roll, that had been his comfort so many times
in his journey. He went thus till he came again in sight of the arbor
where he sat and slept; but that sight renewed his sorrow the more, by
bringing again, even afresh, his evil of sleeping unto his mind. Rev.
2:4; 1 Thess. 5:6-8. Thus, therefore, he now went on, bewailing his
sinful sleep, saying, O wretched man that I am, that I should sleep in
the daytime! that I should sleep in the midst of difficulty! that I
should so indulge the flesh as to use that rest for ease to my flesh
which the Lord of the hill hath erected only for the relief of the
spirits of pilgrims! How many steps have I taken in vain! Thus it
happened to Israel; for their sin they were sent back again by the way
of the Red Sea; and I am made to tread those steps with sorrow, which I
might have trod with delight, had it not been for this sinful sleep.
How far might I have been on my way by this time! I am made to tread
those steps thrice over, which I needed not to have trod but once: yea,
now also I am like to be benighted, for the day is almost spent. O that
I had not slept!
Now by this time he was come to the arbor again, where for a while he
sat down and wept; but at last, (as Providence would have it,) looking
sorrowfully down under the settle, there he espied his roll, the which
he with trembling and haste catched up, and put it into his bosom. But
who can tell how joyful this man was when he had gotten his roll again?
For this roll was the assurance of his life, and acceptance at the
desired haven. Therefore he laid it up in his bosom, gave thanks to God
for directing his eye to the place where it lay, and with joy and tears
betook himself again to his journey. But O how nimbly did he go up the
rest of the hill! Yet before he got up, the sun went down upon
Christian; and this made him again recall the vanity of his sleeping to
his remembrance; and thus he again began to condole with himself: Oh
you sinful sleep! how for your sake am I like to be benighted in my
journey! I must walk without the sun, darkness must cover the path of
my feet, and I must hear the noise of the doleful creatures, because of
my sinful sleep! Now also he remembered the story that Mistrust and
Timorous told him of, how they were frighted with the sight of the
lions. Then said Christian to himself again, These beasts range in the
night for their prey; and if they should meet with me in the dark, how
should I shift them? how should I escape being by them torn in pieces?
Thus he went on his way. But while he was bewailing his unhappy
miscarriage, he lift up his eyes, and behold there was a very stately
palace before him, the name of which was Beautiful, and it stood by the
So I saw in my dream that he made haste, and went forward, that if
possible he might get lodging there. Now before he had gone far, he
entered into a very narrow passage, which was about a furlong off the
Porter's lodge, and looking very narrowly before him as he went, he
espied two lions in the way. Now, thought he, I see the dangers that
Mistrust and Timorous were driven back by. (The lions were chained, but
he saw not the chains.) Then he was afraid, and thought also himself to
go back after them; for he thought nothing but death was before him.
But the Porter at the lodge, whose name is Watchful, perceiving that
Christian made a halt, as if he would go back, cried unto him, saying,
Is your strength so small? Mark 4:40. Fear not the lions, for they are
chained, and are placed there for trial of faith where it is, and for
discovery of those that have none: keep in the midst of the path, and
no hurt shall come unto you.
Then I saw that he went on, trembling for fear of the lions, but taking
good heed to the directions of the Porter; he heard them roar, but they
did him no harm. Then he clapped his hands, and went on till he came
and stood before the gate where the Porter was. Then said Christian to
the Porter, Sir, what house is this? and may I lodge here to-night? The
Porter answered, This house was built by the Lord of the hill, and he
built it for the relief and security of pilgrims. The Porter also asked
whence he was, and whither he was going.
Christian: I am come from the city of Destruction, and am going to
Mount Zion: but because the sun is now set, I desire, if I may, to
lodge here to-night.
The Porter: What is your name?
Christian: My name is now Christian, but my name at the first was
Graceless: I came of the race of Japheth, whom God will persuade to
dwell in the tents of Shem. Gen. 9:27.
The Porter: But how does it happen that you come so late? The sun is
Christian: I had been here sooner, but that, wretched man that I am, I
slept in the arbor that stands on the hill-side! Nay, I had,
notwithstanding that, been here much sooner, but that in my sleep I
lost my evidence, and came without it to the brow of the hill; and then
feeling for it, and not finding it, I was forced with sorrow of heart
to go back to the place where I slept my sleep, where I found it; and
now I am come.
The Porter: Well, I will call out one of the virgins of this place, who
will, if she likes your talk, bring you in to the rest of the family,
according to the rules of the house. So Watchful the Porter rang a
bell, at the sound of which came out of the door of the house a grave
and beautiful damsel, named Discretion, and asked why she was called.
The Porter answered, This man is on a journey from the city of
Destruction to Mount Zion; but being weary and benighted, he asked me
if he might lodge here to-night: so I told him I would call for you,
who, after discourse had with him, may do as seems you good, even
according to the law of the house.
Then she asked him whence he was, and whither he was going; and he told
her. She asked him also how he got into the way; and he told her. Then
she asked him what he had seen and met with in the way, and he told
her. And at last she asked his name. So he said, It is Christian; and I
have so much the more a desire to lodge here to-night, because, by what
I perceive, this place was built by the Lord of the hill for the relief
and security of pilgrims. So she smiled, but the water stood in her
eyes; and after a little pause she said, I will call forth two or three
more of the family. So she ran to the door, and called out Prudence,
Piety, and Charity, who, after a little more discourse with him, had
him into the family; and many of them meeting him at the threshold of
the house, said, Come in, you blessed of the Lord; this house was
built by the Lord of the hill on purpose to entertain such pilgrims in.
Then he bowed his head, and followed them into the house. So when he
was come in and sat down, they gave him something to drink, and
consented together that, until supper was ready, some of them should
have some particular discourse with Christian, for the best improvement
of time; and they appointed Piety, Prudence, and Charity to discourse
with him: and thus they began.
Piety: Come, good Christian, since we have been so loving to you as to
receive you into our house this night, let us, if perhaps we may better
ourselves thereby, talk with you of all things that have happened to
you in your pilgrimage.
Christian: With a very good will; and I am glad that you are so well
Piety: What moved you at first to betake yourself to a pilgrim's life?
Christian: I was driven out of my native country by a dreadful sound
that was in mine ears; to wit, that unavoidable destruction did attend
me, if I abode in that place where I was.
Piety: But how did it happen that you came out of your country this
Christian: It was as God would have it; for when I was under the fears
of destruction, I did not know whither to go; but by chance there came
a man, even to me, as I was trembling and weeping, whose name is
Evangelist, and he directed me to the Wicket-gate, which else I should
never have found, and so set me into the way that hath led me directly
to this house.
Piety: But did you not come by the house of the Interpreter?
Christian: Yes, and did see such things there, the remembrance of which
will stick by me as long as I live, especially three things: to wit,
how Christ, in despite of Satan, maintains his work of grace in the
heart; how the man had sinned himself quite out of hopes of God's
mercy; and also the dream of him that thought in his sleep the day of
judgment was come.
Piety: Why, did you hear him tell his dream?
Christian: Yes, and a dreadful one it was, I thought; it made my heart
ache as he was telling of it, but yet I am glad I heard it.