Poetic Reading of “Pilgrim’s Conflict with Sloth” -A Must Watch-

This generation fights a struggle against apathy and laziness like none before it. Soaking in our ease and luxury we have become soft and forgotten the meaning of a life well lived.

In this beautifully poetic story by John Piper he recounts, on the cusp of his retirement, his own conflict with “Sloth”.  Piper shadows John Bunyan in and allegorical conversation with such a deceiver.  Take the brief time of 8:43 to listen to scriptural rebuttal as “Sloth” tries to disguise himself as “rest”.  Hear one of the most eloquent descriptions of the life-fulfulling work of a christian who refuses to give into the emptiness and lies of “Sloth”.

My prayer is that you will be encouraged in your work today.                                         -Adam

Get Your Free Copy of Pilgrim’s Progress

I’ve done a few blog posts making reference to John Bunyan’s classic work, Pilgrim’s Progress. If you have never read it, but wanted to, below is a link to the FREE e-book copy through Amazon. Hard to pass up free!

Did you know this book has been translated into 200+ languages. It was written in 1678 and has NEVER been out of print.

Click Here. Kindle Deal of the Day: The Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan.

“Next to the Bible, the book I value most is John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress.” –Charles Spurgeon

Subtlety is Overrated – John Bunyan Addresses Legalism

Sometimes we need to hear the truth in an upfront obvious way. We can be thick. We can be dense. We deceive ourselves into believing some things. Where is our standard? What is our guide? How do we discern the Truth?

The Word of God.

Romans 3:19-20 is a smacking reminder we cannot earn our way to heaven. “Now we know that whatever the law says it speaks to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be stopped, and the whole world may be held accountable to God. 20 For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.

We cannot be good enough in our own power to please God. When we focus on the rules, we don’t become better, we only see how bad we are. We see how desperate we are for a Savior.

Even if you’ve never read John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress, the (not-so-subtle) names of the characters tell you quite a bit. Christian, Evangelist, Mr. Worldly-Wiseman, and Mr. Legality are exactly what you would expect; nevertheless, Bunyan’s point cuts to the heart.

In his journey from the City of Destruction to Mt. Zion, Christian takes some bad advice from Mr. Worldly-Wiseman. In this snippet, Bunyan powerfully illustrates the truths of Romans 3:19-20 and Galatians 4:21-27:

“Christian left his path to go to Mr. Legality’s house for help. As Christian neared the hill, he was struck by how high and foreboding the hill appeared. One side of the hill hung precariously over the path that wound its way around it, and Christian feared that the overhanging hill would fall on him.

Filled with fear, Christian stopped his journey and stood still, wondering what he should do. His burden now seemed heavier to him than it was just moments before he had taken this detour off the path that Evangelist had instructed him to follow.

Flashes of lightning came out of the hill, and Christian was afraid that he would be burned. Christian began to sweat and quake with fear. He was sorry that he had taken Mr. Worldly-Wiseman’s counsel.”

After meeting back up with Evangelist, Christian’s error is explained to him:

“The person to whom you were sent for relief, whose name is Legality, is the son of the slave woman who, with all her children, is still in bondage. The mountain that you feared would fall on your head is Mount Sinai. Now if the slave woman and all her children are in bondage, how can you expect them to set you free from your burden?”

Lets learn a lesson from Christian on his journey. Legalism will only crush you, not save you. We must trust in the finished work of Jesus Christ for grace and forgiveness. We must lean fully on Him and live each day in His power.
Go out and trust in Him today!
Your fellow worker in the field.  Adam

How to Backslide in 9 Easy Steps

Tim Challies recently wrote this great article gleaned from the wisdom of John Bunyan’s classic work, Pilgrim’s Progress. He outlines how to progressively distance yourself further and further from Jesus Christ and a relationship with God. Bunyan’s own words are provided to illustrate each point.  Here is how to backslide in 9 easy steps:
  1. Stop meditating on the gospel. “They draw off their thoughts, all that they may, from the remembrance of God, death, and judgment to come.”
  2. Neglect your devotions and stop battling sin. “Then they cast off by degrees private duties, as closet prayer, curbing their lusts, watching, sorrow for sin, and the like.”
  3. Isolate yourself from Christian fellowship. “Then they shun the company of lively and warm Christians.”
  4. Stop going to church. “After that, they grow cold to public duty, as hearing, reading, godly conference, and the like.”
  5. Determine that Christians are hypocrites because they continue to sin. “They then begin to pick holes, as we say, in the coats of some of the godly, and that devilishly, that they may have a seeming color to throw religion (for the sake of some infirmities they have espied in them) behind their backs.”
  6. Trade Christian community for distinctly unChristian company. “Then they begin to adhere to, and associate themselves with, carnal, loose, and wanton men.”
  7. Pursue rebellious conversation and fellowship. “Then they give way to carnal and wanton discourses in secret; and glad are they if they can see such things in any that are counted honest, that they may the more boldly do it through their example.”
  8. Allow yourself to enjoy some small, sinful pleasures. “After this they begin to play with little sins openly.”
  9. Admit what you are and prepare yourself for everlasting torment. “And then, being hardened, they show themselves as they are. Thus, being launched again into the gulf of misery, unless a miracle of grace prevent it, they everlastingly perish in their own deceivings.”