An Application of Bunyan – Danger! Danger! Go Back!

February 25, 2020 | by James M. Harrison

One might think that having escaped Doubting Castle and the sufferings there inflicted upon them, that Christian and Hopeful would think only of getting as far away from there as possible, and doing so as quickly as possible.  And yet, their actions at this crucial point in their journey reveal quite clearly that they are not who they once were.  Rather, they are being conformed to the image of that One they love, who suffered and died for the sake of pilgrims.

Having escaped, their thoughts turned not to themselves, but to others whom they knew would follow.  Those coming after would likewise be tempted to depart from the right way, only to find themselves in the clutches of the Giant, and despairing of life.

A warning must be given.  The two companions erected a pillar upon which they engraved this sentence:

Over this stile (a set of steps for getting over a fence), is the way to Doubting Castle, which is kept by Giant Despair, who despiseth the King of the Celestial country, and seeks to destroy His holy pilgrims.”

This is grace. This is love. This is what the Lord says to Ezekiel.

“Son of man, I have appointed you a watchman to the house of Israel; whenever you hear a word from My mouth, warn them from Me. When I say to the wicked, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn him or speak out to warn the wicked from his wicked way that he may live, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand. Yet if you have warned the wicked and he does not turn from his wickedness or from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered yourself.”  Ezekiel 3:17-19

Yes, if we know the grace of God in the Lord Jesus Christ, then we are pilgrims. We are on a journey, striving to reach a destination.  But along the way, we must not forget to sound the warning: “This way is life, but that way is death!”.  Having received the grace of God, how can we keep the wonderful news of the gospel to ourselves?  Shout the warning from the rooftops!  “The wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord”!  Romans 6:23.

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