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They said, That to go to the Gate for entrance was, by all their countrymen, counted too far about; and that therefore their usual way was to make a short cut of it, and to climb over the wall, as they had done.
Chr. But will it not be counted a trespass against the Lord of the City whither we are bound, thus to violate his revealed will ?
They told him, that, as for that, he needed not to trouble his head thereabout; for what they did they had custom for; and could produce, if need were, testimony that would witness it for more than a thousand years. But, said Christian, will it stand a trial at law ?
They told him, that custom, it being of so long standing as above a thousand years, would doubtless now be admitted as a thing legal by an impartial judge ; and besides, say they, if we get into the way, what matter which
way we get in ? If we are in, we are in Thou art but in the way, who, as we' perceive, came in at the Gate; and we also are in the
that came tumbling over the wall. Wherein, now, is thy condition better than ours?
Chr. I walk by the rule of my Master; you walk by the rude working of your fancies. You are counted thieves already by the Lord of the way; therefore I doubt
will not be found true men at the end of the way. You come in by yourselves without his direction, and shall go out by yourselves without his mercy.
To this they made him but little answer; only they bid him look to himself. Then I saw that they went on, every man in his way, without much conference
THEY THAT COME
one with another; save that these two men told Christian, that, as to Laws and Ordinances, they doubted not but that they should as conscientiously do them as he. Therefore, said they, we see not wherein thou differest from us, but by the coat that is on thy back ; which was, as we trow, given thee by some of thy neighbours to hide the shame of thy nakedness.
Chr. By Laws and Ordinances you will not be saved, since you came not in by the Door. And as for this coat that is on my back, it was given me by the Lord of the place whither I go, and that, as you say, to cover my nakedness with. And I take it as a token of kindness to me, for I had nothing but rags before ; and, besides, thus I comfort myself as I go: surely, think I, when I come to the Gate of the City, the Lord thereof will know me for
GOT HIS LORD's good, since I have his coat on my back, coat on his a coat that he gave me freely in the day that he stripped me of my rags. I have, moreover, a mark in
forehead, of which, perhaps, you have MARK AND HIS taken no notice, which one of my Lord's most intimate associates fixed there in the day that my burden fell off my shoulders. I will tell to you, moreover, that I had then given me a Roll sealed, to comfort me by reading, as I go on the way. I was also bid to give it in at the Celestial Gate, in token of my certain going in after it. All which things I doubt you want; and want them, because you came not in at the Gate,5
To these things they gave him no answer; only they looked upon each other and laughed. Then I saw
5 Gal. i. 16.
BACK, AND IS
that they went all on, save that Christian kept before,
who had no more talk but with himTALK WITH HIM- self, and that sometimes sighingly,
and sometimes comfortably; also he would be often reading in the Roll that one of the Shining Ones gave him, by which he was refreshed. I beheld, then, that they all went on till they came
at the foot of the hill Difficulty, at HE COMES TO THE the bottom of which was a spring.
There were also in the same place two other ways, besides that which came straight from the Gate; one turned to the left hand, and the other to the right, at the bottom of the hill; but the narrow way lay right up the hill; and the name of the going up the side of the hill is called Difficulty. Christian now went to the spring, and drank thereof to refresh himself, and then he began to go up the hill, saying,
The hill, though high, I covet to ascend,
The other two also came to the foot of the hill; but when they saw that the hill was steep and high, and that there were two other ways to go,
supposing also that these two ways might meet again with that up which Christian went, on the other side of the hill, therefore they were resolved to go in those ways. Now, the name of one of those ways was Danger, and the name of the other Destruction. So the one took the way which is called Danger, which
6 Isa. xlix. 10.
THE DANGER OF
led him into a great wood; and the other took directly up the way to De- TURning out of struction, which led him into a wide field, full of dark mountains, where he stumbled and fell, and rose no more. I looked then after Christian to see him go up
the hill, where I perceived he fell from running to going, and from going to clambering upon his hands and his knees, because of the steepness of the place. Now, about the mid-way to the top of the hill was a pleasant arbour, made by the Lord of the hill, for the refreshment of weary travellers ; thither, therefore, Christian got, where also he sat down to rest him. Then he pulled his Roll out of his bosom, and read therein to his comfort; he also now began afresh to take a review of the coat or garment that was given to him as he stood by the Cross. Thus pleasing himself a while, he at last fell into a slumber, and thence into a fast sleep, which detained him in that place until it was almost night; and in his sleep his Roll fell out of his hand. Now, as he was sleeping, there HE THAT SLEEPS came one to him, and awaked him, saying, “Go to the ant thou sluggard ; consider her ways, and be wise ;”? and with that Christian suddenly started up, and sped him on his way,
and went apace till he came to the top of the hill.
Now, when he was got up to the top of the hill, there came two men running to meet him amain ; the name of the one was Timorous, and of the other Mistrust; to whom Christian said, Sirs, What's the matter, you run
IS A LOSER.
7 Prov. vi. 6.
the wrong way? Timorous answered, that they were going to the city of Zion, and had got up that difficult place ; but, said he, the farther we go, the more danger we meet with ; wherefore we turned, and are going back again.
Yes, said Mistrust, for just before us lie a couple of Lions in the way, whether sleeping or waking we know not; and we could not think, if we came within reach, but they would presently pull us in pieces.
Then said Christian, You make me afraid ; but whither shall I flee to be safe? If I go back to my own country, that is prepared for fire and brimstone, and I shall certainly perish there: if I can get to the
Celestial City I am sure to be in safety there. I must venture : to go back is
nothing but death; to go forward is fear of death, and life everlasting beyond it: I will yet go forward. So Mistrust and Timorous ran down the hill, and Christian went on his way. But thinking again of what he had heard from the men, he felt in his bosom for his Roll, that he might read therein, and
be comforted; but he felt and found it not. Then was Christian in great distress, and knew not what to do;
for he wanted that which used to relieve him, and that which should have been his pass into the Celestial City. Here, therefore, he began to
be much perplexed, and knew not what to do : at last he bethought him
self that he had slept in the arbour that is on the side of the hill ; and falling down upon his knees, he asked God forgiveness for that foolish fact, and then went back to look for his Roll. But, all the
HE IS PERPLEXED