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Tender-Conscience leaves the House Beautiful,
Dan. X. 1-15. And when he had thus comforted and strengthened Daniel, he revealed many wonderful and secret things that should come to pass in the world: so that, by these great favours shewed to Daniel, we may plainly see how ac. ceptable religious fasting is to Godi in ini w Many more examples of this kind might be produced out of the Old Testament: but these may suffice to shew that fasting was a duty often practised by the people of God, and by the holy men under the law of Mosés. · And the gospel, recommends it, from the beginning to the end, hy the examples of Christ and John the Baptist, of Peter, Paul, and the rest of the apostles, as well as by their counsels and exhortations : nothing is more frequently inculcated than this duty of fasting throughout the writings of the New Testament; and, without all doubt, it is now as requisite as ever it was, since we are liable to the same infirmities, exposed to the same temptations, and beset with the same dangers, as the former Christians were; against all which evils fasting is the proper remedy. Fasting mortifies the body, and tames concupiscence; it quenches lust, and kindles devotion: it is the handmaid of prayer, and the nurse of meditation; it refines the understanding, subdues the passions, regulates the will, and sublimates the whole man to a more spiritual state of life; it is the life of angels, the enamel of the soul, the great advantage of religion, the best opportunity for retirements of devotion. While the smoke of carnal appetite is suppressed and extinguished, the heart breaks forth with holy fire, till it be burned like the cherubiin and the most ecstasied order of pure and unpolluted spirits. These are the proper and genuine effects of religious and frequent fasting, as they can witness who make it their private practice.
TENDER. You have made me in love with fasting, by giving so fair an account of it, and discovering its consequences to the soul and body, and I am determined to make trial of it myself hereafter; for in my opinion, as you describe it, it causes a man to draw nearer unto God, while his soul being, by abstinence and fasting, withdrawn, as it were, from the body, and abstracted from all outward things, retires into herself, and in the secret tabernacle within she sits under the shadow of the Divinity, and enjoys a more close communion and intimate union with God.
When Tender-Conscience had made an end of these words, he began to take his journey; and giving them all his thanks,
be sure tond wishing his neves
for the kind entertainment he had met with in this place, and especially for llieir edifying discourse, he rose up to také his leave. Then they rose up with him, and accompanied bim to the' armoury, which stood by the gates and there they armed him all over with armour and weapons of proof, as was the custom to do to alt pilgrims, because the rest of his journey was! like to be more dangerous, the ways being infested with thieves and robbers, with sons of Belial, and murderers, also with fiends and devils; also they gave him his pass, which he had delivered: to them at his first coming thithér : now they had all set their hands to it, to confirm and strengthen it the more, bidding him to be sure to have a great care of it. So they conducted him to the gate, and wishing him a prosperous journey, he parted from them with tears in his eyes..
Now I saw in my dream, that Tender- Conscience'went forward a good pace till he came to the brow of the hill, where the way lay down into the valley of Humiliation; but because it was · steep and dangerous going down, he was forced to slacken his pace, and lean hard upon his strong crutch; yet he was apt to slip, and could hardly stop himself from running, or rather tumbling down the hill; but at length, with much ado, he got safe to the bottom, and came to the valley of Humiliation:
Now all this valley was a kind of marshy boggy ground, and was at this time all overflowed with water, so that there was but one way to pass through it with safety, and that was overi certain planks fastened to stumps and posts, and joined onie to: another; for it was but one plank's breadth all the whole way, and that a very narrow one: this set of planks was called the bridge of Self-Denial, and it reached quite over the valley of Humiliation. Now' the waters were very high, and touched the planks; nay, in some places they covered them, so that a man could hardly discern his way. It is
The sight of this dangerous bridge did not a little discourage Tender-Conscience, but considering that it drew towards night, he was resolved to venture over; so on lie went courageously, but at a very slow pace because of the exceeding narrowness of the planks, which also now and then would seem to yield and bend under hiin, which often put him in a fright lest they
should break, and he be drowned in the waters : and the more * to increase his trouble, when hie was got about half way over, the air was hung all 'full of nets, traps, and gins, which were placed so low, that a man could not walk upright but he must be cauglit in some of them: these were planted here by the
.. . Gg 4
ould under which have been over
Tender-Conscience enters the Valley of the Shadow of Death.
prince of the power of the air, to catch such pilgrims in as
". Through many toils and dangers I have run. So it b y
(2061 He feeds and clothes, and arms bis pilgrims still, s
Aុ ២៤ } The lowest step that leads to highest bliss."
, fix! bath Then I saw in my dream that Tender-Conscience entered the valley of the Shadow of Death, and night overtook him, so that his feet stumbled in the dark, and he was ready to fall into the ditch, or the quag, which were on each side of the nar
Tender-Conscience arrives at the Pillar History.
row way; but being in the midst of summer, the sun arose , within a few hours, and so he enjoyed the daylight, which was exceeding comfortable to him, though he met with dreadful and frightful objects ; for the valley is of itself very dark, and there hang perpetually over it such black and thick clouds of confusion, that what for them, and what for Death, who spreads bis wings over this valley, the sun gives a very faint and dim light here; yet that which shined at this time served to, light Tender-Conscience along the dreadful hollow way, where he heard as he wept along a continual howling and yelling; but, at length he got clear of all, and came to the end of the valley, eyen to the place where Christian saw blood, bones, ashes, and mangled bodies of men, lying on the ground; but now they were buried, and a pillar erected in the place, as a standing memorial of the cruelties that were acted by the two giants that lived in the cave hard by this place : there was an inscription on the pillar also, giving an account of the righteous blood that ; had been shed in the world on the score of religion, from Abel's to that day, there was also a summary of all the sanguine laws that had been enacted on that account by cruel tyrants, as by Pharaoh, Nebuchadnezzar; Darius, Antiochus, Nero, 8C.. There was a relation of a woman and her seven sons, that were barbarously tormented with exquisite torture, and afterwards put, to death by command of the tyrant. Many more curious me! morials were there engraved on this pillar, which Tender-Conscience, took great delight to read. Now the name of this pila lar is History; and hard by it, even over against the cave of the two giants, Pagan and Pope, there is another cave, wherein Tender-Conscience saw a middle-aged man sitting, of a mild, grave, and venerable countenance, and his name was Reformation. Now it was this man's charge to look after this pillar, and to see that no injury be done to it by the thieves and robbers that infest that road, nor by any of giant Pope's party; for be maintained a great aríny under ground, his cave being of vast extent, and his party used sometimes to issue out, and commit great spoils and ravages in the neighbouring countries; but, now Reformation kept as strong a party as he, and had as much room in his cave to lodge them in, and sometimes they would fall out and skirmish, sometimes come to pitched battles, and then the ground would be afresh strewed with dead bodies, and stained with blood, till they were buried out of the way. All this T'ender-Conscience learned from one that came out of the
Tender-Conscience meets with Seek-Truth."
very yowas born birch Pas very
cave of Reformation, and fell into discourse with him as they stood talking by the pillar.'19.., 0.si
n At length the man having understood that Tender-Conscience came from thie Valley of Destruction, and was going to the heavenly Jerusalém, was very inquisitive after his country, and the place of his birth; for, said lie, I have heard my father say, that I was born in that country too, and brought from thence very young; and when my father came to this place, he left me in the custody of Reformation, with whom I have continued ever since; and what is become of my father I know not; or whether I shall ever see him again or no: but I remember le
used to talk of going "to the Celestial City, which I suppose is " · the same place whither you are now travelling and therefore,
if you will accept of my company, I will gladly travel along with you, having great hopes of seeing my father ihere, or hearing some tidings of him; and, besides, they say it is brave living in that City, and that it is the richest place in the world; therefore I would fain go along with you, in hopes of going into that famous City to dwell. .
TENDER. I like your motion very well, for 1 bave traớelled alone hitherto, which made the way seem more tedious to me; and a companion in the rest of my journey would tivert mélancholy, and we should encourage each other in 'oùt pilgrimage.' But I must acquaint you with one thing first, and that ise that your journey will prove ineffectual, I doubt, unless you came in by the Wicket-Gate that is at the head of the narrów way, and can produce your certificate, or pass; from the Intepreter; . for, as I am certainly informed, the King has given strict order that none shall be admitted into the heavenly City that are not thus qualified. 'Hi!! .. .. .
!, . Then Seek-Truth (for so was the other män called) replied, I have a pass by me, which my father procured for me, when he brought me along with him, and he told me he had it from the Interpreter, giving me strict charge to have a care of it."
TENDER. What was youf father's name and from whence came he?.."!;! ii!! **-SEEK. His name was. Little-Faith, and he came from the town of Sincere. M en
TENDER, O! I believe I have heard talk of him: if it be the same man that I mean, there' goes a report as if he were robbed in a place called Dead-Man's-Lane. .
Seek. I hope not so, though I am sure he had plenty of sil