Once the most deeply cherished book in English-speaking households other than Bible itself, John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress is the allegorical tale of Christian the pilgrim on his journey to the Celestial City. Along the way, Christian encounters both worthy companions and dreadful adversaries. Although this book was written more than three hundred years ago, this stirring spiritual narrative still bears the power to challenge and encourage readers on their own spiritual journeys.
“The Pilgrim’s Progress has been printed and read more often than any book other than the Bible itself. This is the most evangelical of classics. A book that we ought to cherish as one of the treasures of our spiritual heritage.”
John Bunyan was born in 1628 at Elstow near Bedford, England. As a young man he served briefly in the Parliamentary forces. Then, after years of spiritual struggle, he found salvation in Christ and began to preach to groups of dissenters. Arrested and condemned to Bedford jail for illegal preaching, a punishment from which he might well have been freed by promising to give up his ministry, he remained in prison for nearly twelve years, and, after several years of liberty, was again jailed for another six months. His was an imprisonment unique in English literature for the quality of the fruit it bore-notably the incomparable “Pilgrim’s Progress.”