I have finally finished reading the Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan (1628-1688). It is not the kind of book I normally read, but, since it is regarded as one of the classics of Christian literature, I thought I should read it. It is a Christian allegory of the spiritual journey of a man named Christian.
It is written in old English and so I didn’t quite understand much of the subtleties of meanings but I did get the gist. What I found interesting about the book though is the fact that the problems Christian faced were no different from what we face nowadays. The actual circumstances may be different but the spiritual struggles are the same: humiliation, threats of death, doubts and despair which he personifies in the Valley of Humiliation, the Valley of the Shadow of Death, the dungeons of Doubting Castle, and finally Giant Despair.
Christian eventually triumphs and enters his final destination, the Celestial City.
I guess the Christian struggle is no different from those who lived before us and nor will it be any different for those who come after us. The struggles may be the same but the context varies.
The Pilgrim’s Progress depicts a fairly true account of the everyday Christian struggle and its eventual triumph. It is a light read, although there were one or two instances of sexism and racism which shouldn’t surprise anyone as that was the cultural bias of the writer’s time and he merely stated it without seeing it as an issue; nothing, however, was written in any derogatory way.
The moral of the story is simple: no matter what the difficulties, Christians always come through. Christian’s methods of dealing with his struggles are worth considering. We could learn a thing or two from him!