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set out on pilgrimage.
The next night Christiana had a dream; and, bes hold, she saw as if a broad parchment was opened before her, in which was recorded the sum of lier ways; and the crimes, as she thought, looked very
Jack upon her. Then she cried out aloud in her sleep, “ Lord, have mercy upon me, a sinner!” (Luke xviii. 13;) and the little children heard her.
After this, she thought she saw two very illfavoured ones standing by her bed-side, and saying, " What shall we do with this woman? for she cries out for mercy, waking and sleeping; if she be suffered to go on as she begins, we shall lose her as we have lost her husband". Wherefore we must, by sone way, seek to take her off from the thoughts of what shall be hereafter, else all the world cannot help but she will become a pilgrim.".
Now she awoke in a great sweat; also a trembling was upon her; but after a while she fell asleep again. And then she thought she saw Christian her husband in a place of bliss among many immortals, with a harp in his band, standing and playing upon it before One that sat on a throne, with a rainbow about his bead. She saw also, as if he bowed his head with his face to the paved work that was under his Prince's feet, saying, “I heartily thaok
nistry; the jailor's, through the alarm produced in his mind by the fear of disgrace and punishment; Christian was represented as brought to a sense of his lost condition by reading the scriptures ; Christiana, by reflecting, after the death of her husband, upon her unkind treataient of hiin on account of his religion, the thought of which “rent the caul of her heart in sunder;" and the four boys, by the conversation of their mother with them about their departed father, and about her having neglected their souls. Religion is a personal concern, and begins with repentance and sorrow for sis. Children are not saved by the faith of their parents, but must be ini
dividually brought to feel their own sinfulness, and to confess their · own guilt and danger; nor will a mother's prayers save her ciudren, unless they heartily unite with her in them.
Mark this. "This is the quintessence of hell. ! Help against discouragement. d10
Christiana receives a
my Lord and King for bringing me into this place." Then shouted a company of them that stood round about, and harped with their harps; but no mak could tell what they said, except Christian and his companions".
Next morning, when she was up, and had prayed to God, and talked with her children a while, one knocked hard at the door ; to whom she spake out, saying, “If thou comest in God's name, come in." So he said, “ Amen;" and opened the door, and saluted her with, “ Peace on this house'." The which when he had done, he said, “Christiana, knowest thou wherefore I am come " Then she blushed and trembled ; also her heart began to wax warm with desires to know from whence he came, and what his errand was to her. So he said unto her, “My name is Secret; I dwell with them that are on high. It is talked of where I dwell as if thou hadst a desire to go thither: also there is a report that thou art aware of the evil thou hast formerly done to thy husband, in hardening thy heart against his way, and in keeping these babes in their ignorance. Chris, tiana, the Merciful One has sent me to tell thee, that he is a God ready to forgive, and that he taketh delight to inultiply the pardon of offences. He also would have thee know, that he inviteth thee to come into his presence, to his table, and that he will feed thee with the fat of his house, and with the heritage of Jacob thy father.
“There is Christian, thy husband that was, with legions more, his companions, ever beholding that
tiana, ping these babhy heart a
* There is no just reason to doubt that God still employs dreams for the conversion of sinners. In a dreum, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falleth upon men, in slumberings upon the bed ; then : he openelh the ears of men, and sealeth their instruction, Job xxxiii. 15. 16.-A scriptural view of the exceeding sinfulness of sin will lead to fervent prayer for mercy. The sincere convert will be animated by the prospect of obtaining salvation as other sinners bare done.
Convictions seconded by fresh tidings of God's readiness to pardon
face which doth minister life to the beholders; and they will all be glad when they shall hear the sound of thy feet step over thy Father's threshold"."
Christiana at this was greatly abashed in herself, and howed her head to the ground. The visitor proceeded, and said, “Christiana, here is also a letter for thee, which I have brought from thy husband's King ;" so she took it, and opened it, but it smelt after the manner of the best perfume, (Song i. 3.) Also it was written in letters of gold. The contents of the letter were, That the King would have ner to do as did Christian her husband; for that that was the way to come to his city, and to dwell in his presence with joy for ever. At this the good woman was quite overcome; so she cried out to her visitor, “Sir, will you carry me and my children with you, that we may also go and worship the King?"
Then said the visitor, “ Christiana, the bitter is before the sweet. Thou must through troubles, as he did that went before thee, enter this celestial city. Wherefore I advise thee to do as did Christian thy husband: go to the wicket-gate yonder over the plain, for that stands at the head of the way up which thou must go; and I wish thee all
m The readiness of God to pardon a repenting sinner is the theme of this conversation. It is the work of ministers of the gospel to make known, for the consolation of such persons, what is contained in the scriptures upon that subject ;-that God is ready to forgive, and delighteth in mercy; that he invites sinners to forse.ke their way, and return unto the Lord; that multitudes have been saved through Christ; that there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth ; and that the promises of Christ, proceeding from love to sinners, are most encouraging and reviving i Thy love, says the church, is better than wine; thy nume is us ointment poured forth. - It is probable that the name of this ministerial “ visitor," was derived from what was said by the heavenly visitor to Manoah, Judges xiji. 19. Why askest thou thus after my name, seeing it is secret ? and that it was given to the vi. sitor of Christiana, from the consideration that ministers are stew a:ds of the mysteries, or secrets, of God, I Cor. iv, 1.