Pilgrim’s Progress is one of the most well-known pieces of Christian literature, written in 1678 by English author Paul Bunyan. It is an allegory of a man aptly named Christian on his travels from the City of Destruction (representing the world) to the Celestial City (representing Heaven). Along the way, Christian attempts to relieve himself of the heavy burden he is carrying (sin). Pilgrim’s Progress was followed by Part 2, written in 1684, which follows the journey of Christian’s wife and sons in a similar fashion.
During his voyage he encounters many characters who attempt to give him guidance. The first of these are Evangelist, Obstinate and Pliable. Evangelist provides him with a book in his hand (the Bible) and sets him on the path to the Celestial City. Christian is later led astray by Mr. Worldly Wiseman and Mr. Legality, who present him with a secular and legalistic view of Christianity. He also comes across many symbolic landmarks, such as the Palace Beautiful and the Valley of Death.
Pilgrim’s Progress is heavily riddled with symbolism, most of it being straightforward and easy to interpret. However, the old style language may be hard for some to follow. Bunyan also uses a large amount of scriptural references corresponding to his narrative, so we know that it is based on Biblical truth. This book is relatively simple in concept for believers and non-believers alike. Reading Pilgrim’s Progress could help lead a non-Christian to the Lord by helping him better understand the Christian walk.