Gambar halaman

values service.

Chr. I am come from the city of Destruction, which is the place of all evil, and I am going to the city of Zion.

Apol. By this I perceive that thou art one of my subjects; for all that country is mine, and I am the Prince and God of it. How is it, then, that thou hast run away from thy King ? Were it not that I hope thou mayest do me more service, I would strike thee now, at one blow, to the ground.

Chr. I was indeed born in your dominions; but your service was hard, and your wages such as a man could not live on,"for the wages of sin is death ;"* Therefore, when I was come to years, I did, as other considerate persons do, look out, if perhaps I might mend myself. Apol. There is no Prince that will thus lightly lose his subjects,

neither will I as yet lose thee; but since thou comApollyon's flattery.

plainest of thy service and wages, be content to go back: what our country will afford, I do here promise to give thee.

Chr. But I have let myself to another, even to the King of Princes; and how can I with fairness go back with thee?' Apollyon under. Apot. Thou hast done in this according to the Christ’s' proverb, “Change a bad for a worse.” But it is

ordinary for those that have professed themselves his servants, after a while, to give him the slip, and return again to me. Do thou so too, and all shall be well.

Chr. I have given him my faith, and sworn my allegiance to him; how then can I go back from this, and not be hanged as a traitor ? :

Apol. Thou didst the same to me; and yet I am willing to pass by all, if now thou wilt yet'turn and go back.'

Chr. What I promised thee was in my non-age; and, besides, I count that the Prince under whose banner now I stand is able to absolve me ; :yea, and to pardon also what I did as to my compliance with thee: and besides, (O thou destroying Apollyon!) to speak truth, I like his service, his wages, his servants, his government, his company, and country, better than thine ; and therefore leave off to persuade me farther; I am his servant, and I will follow him.

Apol. Consider again, when thou art in cool Apollyon pleads the grievous ends

blood, what thou art like to meet with in the way of Christians, to that thou goest. Thou knowest that, for the most dissuade Christian

part, his servants come to an ill end, because they from persisting in

are transgressors against me and my ways. How many of them have been put to shameful deaths!

this way.

* Rom. vi. 23.

And, besides, thou countest his service better than inine, whereas he never yet came from the place where he is to deliver


that served him out of their hands; but as for me, how many times, as all the world very well knows, have I delivered, either by power or fraud, those that have faithfully served me, from him and his, though taken by them !-and so will I deliver thee.

Chr. His forbearing at present to deliver them is on purpose to try their love, whether they will cleave to him to the end ; and as for the ill end thou sayest they come to, that is most glorious in their account; for, for present deliverance, they do,not much expect it; for they stay for their glory, and then they shall have it, when their Prince comes in his, and the glory of the angels.

Apol. Thou hast already been unfaithful in thy service to him, and how dost thou think to receive wages of him?

Chr. Wherein, O Apollyon, háve I been unfaithful to him?

Apol. Thou didst faint at first setting out, when thou wast almost choked in the gulf of Despond; Christian's infirm

Apollyon pleads thou didst attempt wrong ways to be rid of thy ities against him. Burden; whereas thou shouldst have stayed till thy Prince had taken it off. Thou didst sinfully sleep, and lose thy choice things. Thou wast also almost persuaded to go back at the sight of the Lions ; and when thou talkest of thy journey, and of what thou hast heard and seen, thou art inwardly desirous of vain-glory in all that thou sayest or dost.

Chr. All this is true, and much more which thou hast left out; but the Prince whom I serve and honour is merciful, and ready to forgive: but, besides, these infirmities possessed me in thy country; for there I sucked them in, and I have groaned under them, been sorry for them, and have obtained pardon of my Prince. Then Apollyon broke out into a grievous rage,

Apollyon in a rage saying, I am an enemy to this Prince! I hate his

falls upon Chrisperson, and laws, and people, and am come out on tian. purpose to withstand thee.

Chr. Apollyon, beware what you do ;' for I am in the King's highway, the Way of Holiness; therefore take heed to yourself.

Then Apollyon' straddled quite over the whole breadth of the way, and said, I am void of fear in this matter; prepare thyself to die; for I swear by my infernal den that thou shalt go no farther : here will I spill thy soul !-And with that he threw a flaming dart at his breast; but Christian had a shield in his hand, with which he caught it, and so prevented the danger of that.

Then did Christian draw, for he saw it was time to bestir him; and Apollyon as fast made at him, throwing darts as thick as hail;

[graphic][ocr errors][subsumed][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

(Christian's fight with Apollyon.) by the which, notwithstanding all that Christian could do to avoid

it, Apollyon wounded him in his head, his hand, Christian wounded in his understand. and foot. This made Christian give a little back; ing, faith, and con. Apollyon, therefore, followed his work amain, and versation.

Christian again took courage, and resisted as manfully as he could. This sore combat lasted for above half a day, even till Christian was almost quite spent; for you must know that Christian, by reason of his wounds, must needs grow weaker and weaker.

Then Apollyon, espying his opportunity, began Apollyon casteth Christian down to to gather up close to Christian, and, wrestling with the ground. him, gave him a dreadful fall; and with that Christian's sword flew out of his hand. Then said Apollyon, I am sure of thee now; and with that he had almost pressed him to death; so that Christian began to despair of life. But, as God would have it, while Apollyon was fetching his last blow, thereby to make a full end of this good man, Christian nimbly reached out his hand

for his sword, and caught it, saying: “Rejoice not Christian's victory over Apollyon.

against me, O mine enemy! when I fall, I shall

arise;" and with that gave him a deadly thrust, which made him give back, as one that had received his mortal wound. Christian, perceiving that made at him again, saying

[ocr errors]

A brief relation of

“Nay, in all these things, we are more than conquerors, through Him that loved us;" and with that Apollyon spread forth his dragon's wings, and sped him away, that Christian saw him no more.*

In this combat, no man can imagine, unless he had seen and heard, as I did, what yelling and hid- the combat by the eous roaring Apollyon made all the time of the spectator. fight. He spake like a Dragon; and, on the other side, what sighs and groans burst from Christian's heart. I never saw him all the while give so much as one pleasant look, till he perceived he had wounded Apollyon with his two-edged sword: then, indeed, he did smile, and look upward; but 'twas the dreadfulest sight that ever I saw. So, when the battle was over, Christian said, I

gives will here give thanks to him that hath delivered God thanks for his me out of the mouth of the Lion, to him that did

deliverance. help me against Apollyon! And so he did, saying :


Great Beelzebub, the Captain of this fiend,
Design'd my ruin; therefore to this end
He sent him harness'd out; and he, with rage
That hellish was, did fiercely me engage;
But blessed Michael helped me; and I,
By dint of sword, did quickly make him fly:
Therefore to him let me give lasting praise,
And thank and bless his holy name always.

in his hand.

Then there came to him a hand, with some of the leaves of the Tree of Life, the which Christian took and applied to the wounds that he had received in the battle, and was healed immediately. He also sat down in that place to eat bread, and to drink of the bottle that was given to him a little before; so, Christian goes on being refreshed, he addressed himself to his journey, his journey with with his sword drawn in his hand; for, he said, I his sword drawn know not but some other enemy may be at hand. But he met with no other affront from Apollyon quite through this valley.

Now at the end of this valley was another, called The Valley of the The Valley of the Shadow of Death ; and Chris- Shadow of Death. tian must needs go through it, because the way to the Celestial City lay through the midst of it. Now, this valley is a very solitary place. The prophet Jeremiah thus describes it;.“A wilderness, a land of deserts and pits; a land of drought, and of the shadow of death; a land that no man (but a Christian) passeth through, and where no man dwelt.” + * Micah vii. 8. Rom. viii. 8, 9. James iv. 6.

Jer. ii. 6.

met with

[graphic][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

Now here Christian was worse put to it than in his fight with Apollyon, as by the sequel you shall see. The children of I saw then in my dream, that when Christian the spies go back.

was got to the borders of the Shado of Death, there met him two men, children of them that brought up an evil report of the good land, making haste to go back;* to whom Christian spake as follows:

Chr. Whither are you going?

They said, Back! back! and we would have you do so too, if either life or peace is prized by you:

Why, what's the matter ? said Christian.

Matter! said they; we were going that way, as you are going, and went as far as we durst; and indeed we were almost past coming back; for had we gone a litttle further, we had not been here to bring the news to thee.

But what have you met with? said Christian.

Men. Why we were almost in the Valley of the Shadow of -Death;ť but that by good-hap we looked before us, and saw the danger before we came to it.

But what have you seen? said Christian.
Men. Seen! why, the Valley itself, which is as dark as pitch.

*Num. xiii.

Psalm xliv. 19. Psalm cvii. 19.

« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »