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WOMEN'S BOOK CLUB
Meets Monthly on the Third Thursday | 1:30 p.m. | Coffee Area
The Scarlet Pimperel by Baroness Orczy - April 19
An American Plague - May 17
Destiny and Power - August 16
"...but the people who know their God shall stand firm and take action." Daniel 11:32
The Pilgrim's Progress
From This World to That Which Is To Come
by John Bunyan
For two centuries Pilgrim's Progress was, next to the Bible, the best-read book in much of the world. A copy could be found in nearly every home in the English-speaking world, and nearly every person, Christian or otherwise, was familiar with its contents. This classic allegory of the Christian life has appeared in well over four thousand English-language editions and has been translated into scores of other languages. Generation after generation has found blessing and help in its pages.
The author, John Bunyan, was one of the greatest Puritan preachers of the 17th century. In 1660, Bunyan was arrested for preaching, which was legal only for ministers of the Church of England. Initially his sentence was for only 6 months, but when he refused to agree to stop preaching, it was extended to twelve years. He wrote Pilgrim's Progress while in prison.
The story is centered on the journey of the main character, whose name is Christian, and communicates in a powerful and memorable way the need for salvation and the importance of staying on the path of faith and right living. It focuses on the essentials of the Christian faith in a way that does not require a knowledge of theology to understand.
Knowing that the spiritual experience of all believers is not the same, Bunyan portrayed his three main characters – Christian, Faithful, and Hopeful – with different weaknesses, strengths, and experiences, so that nearly everyone can find himself somewhere in the story.
The book is written in a relaxed conversational style, and the dialogue reflects the informal and lively language, as well as the viewpoint, of rural common folk of seventeenth-century England. Christian, Faithful, and Hopeful are all commoners, while most of the upper-class characters are either evil or deluded, such as the judge, Lord Hate-Good, and the deceiver, Mr. Worldly Wiseman.
In my estimation, Pilgrim's Progress is still relevant today, for it is clear and powerful in dealing with the most important issues of life, including assurance of salvation, the temptations of the world, the Christian's armor, resisting flattery, the benefits of Christian fellowship, the difference between religious-sounding talk and spiritual reality, and more. This edition of the book also contains thirty beautifully rendered color illustrations.
I'm sure you will enjoy this famous book.
Reviewed by Dr. Bill Hogan