The Pilgrim's Progress - Part Two
The Author's Way of Sending Forth His Second Part of the Pilgrim | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26
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Prudence Catechises the Boys

Then said Prudence and Piety, "If you will be persuaded to stay here awhile, you shall have what the house will afford."

Charity. "Aye, and that with a very good will," said CHARITY.

So they consented, and stayed there about a month or above, and became very profitable one to another. And because PRUDENCE would see how CHRISTIANA had brought up her children, she asked leave of her to catechise them. So she gave her free consent. Then she began at the youngest, whose name was JAMES.

Pru. And she said, "Come, JAMES, canst thou tell who made thee?"

James. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost.

Pru. Good boy. And canst thou tell who saves thee?

James. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost.

Pru. Good boy, still. But how doth God the Father save thee?

James. By his grace.

Pru. How doth God the Son save thee?

James. By his righteousness, death, and blood, and life.

Pru. And how doth God the Holy Ghost save thee?

James. By his illumination; by his renovation; and by his preservation.

Then said PRUDENCE to CHRISTIANA, "You are to commended for thus bringing up your children. I suppose I need not ask the rest these questions, since the youngest of them can answer them so well. I will therefore now apply myself to the youngest next."

Pru. Then said she, "Come, JOSEPH" (for his name was Joseph), "will you let me catechise you?"

Joseph. With all my heart.

Pru. What is man?

Jos. A reasonable creature, so saved by God, as my brother said.

Pru. What is supposed by this word "saved?"

Jos. That man by sin has brought himself into a state of captivity and misery.

Pru. What is supposed by his being saved by the Trinity?

Jos. That sin is so great and mighty a tyrant that none can pull us out of its clutches but God; and that God is so good and loving to man as to pull him indeed out of this miserable state.

Pru. What is God's design in saving of poor men?

Jos. The glorifying of his name, of his grace and justice, etc.; and the everlasting happiness of his creatures.

Pru. Who are they that must be saved?

Jos. Those that accept of his salvation.

Pru. Good boy, JOSEPH; thy mother has taught thee well, and thou hast hearkened to what she has said unto thee.

Then said PRUDENCE to SAMUEL, who was the eldest but one:

Pru. Come, SAMUEL, are you willing that I should catechise you also?

Samuel. Yes, forsooth, if you please.

Pru. What is heaven?

Sam. A place and state most blessed, because God dwells there.

Pru. What is hell?

Sam. A place and state most woeful; because it is the dwelling place of sin, the devil, and death.

Pru. Why wouldest thou go to heaven?

Sam. That I may see God, and serve him without weariness; that I may see Christ, and love him everlastingly; that I may have that fulness of the Holy Spirit in me, that I can by no means here enjoy.

Pru. "A very good boy also, and one that has learned well." Then she addressed herself to the eldest, whose name was MATTHEW; and she said to him, "Come, MATTHEW, shall I also catechise you?"

Matthew. With a very good will.

Pru. I ask, then, if there was ever anything that had a being antecedent to, or before God?

Mat. No, for God is eternal; nor is there anything, excepting himself, that had a being until the beginning of the first day: "For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is."

Pru. What do you think of the Bible?

Mat. It is the holy Word of God.

Pru. Is there nothing written therein but what you understand?

Mat. Yes, a great deal.

Pru. What do you do when you meet with such places therein that you do not understand?

Mat. I think God is wiser than I. I pray also that he will please to let me know all therein that he knows will be for my good.

Pru. How believe you as touching the resurrection of the dead?

Mat. I believe they shall rise the same that was buried; the same in nature, though not in corruption. And I believe this upon a double account: first, because God has promised it; secondly, because he is able to perform it.

Then said PRUDENCE to the boys, "You must still hearken to your mother; for she can learn you more. You must also diligently give ear to what good talk you shall hear from others; for, for your sakes do they speak good things. Observe also, and that with carefulness, what the heavens and the earth do teach you; but especially be much in the meditation of that Book that was the cause of your father's becoming a pilgrim. I, for my part, my children, will teach you what I can while you are here; and shall be glad if you will ask me questions that tend to godly edifying."

Mercy, Mr. Brisk and Husbands

Now by that these pilgrims had been at this place a week, MERCY had a visitor that pretended some good will unto her, and his name was Mr. BRISK: a man of some breeding, and that pretended to religion; but a man that stuck very close to the world. So he came once or twice, or more, to MERCY, and offered love unto her. Now MERCY was of a fair countenance, and therefore the more alluring.

Her mind also was, to be always busying of herself in doing; for when she had nothing to do for herself, she would be making of hose and garments for others, and would bestow them upon them that had need. And Mr. BRISK, not knowing where or how she disposed of what she made, seemed to be greatly taken for that he found her never idle. "I will warrant her a good housewife," quoth he to himself.

MERCY then revealed the business to the maidens that were of the house, and inquired of them concerning him; for they did know him better than she. So they told her that he was a very busy young man, and one that pretended to religion; but was, as they feared, a stranger to the power of that which was good.

"Nay, then," said MERCY, "I will look no more on him; for I purpose never to have a clog to my soul."

PRUDENCE then replied, "That there needed no great matter of discouragement to be given to him; her continuing so as she had begun to do for the poor would quickly cool his courage."

So the next time he came he found her at her old work, a-making of things for the poor. Then said he, "What, always at it?" "Yes," said she, "either for myself or for others." "And what canst thee earn a day?" quoth he. "I do these things," said she, "that I may be rich in good works; laying up in store a good foundation against the time to come, that I may lay hold on eternal life".

"Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life."
~ 1 Timothy 6:17-19 ~

"Why, prithee, what dost thou with them?" "Clothe the naked," said she. With that his countenance fell. So he forbore to come at her again. And when he was asked the reason why, he said, "That MERCY was a pretty lass, but troubled with ill conditions."

When he had left her, PRUDENCE said, "Did I not tell thee that Mr. BRISK would soon forsake thee? yea, he will raise up an ill report of thee; for notwithstanding his pretence to religion, and his seeming love to MERCY, yet MERCY and he are of tempers so different, that I believe they will never come together."

Mercy. I might have had husbands afore now, though I spake not of it to any; but they were such as did not like my conditions, though never did any of them find fault with my person: so they and I could not agree.

Pru. Mercy in our days is little set by, any further than as to its name; the practice which is set forth by thy conditions there are but few that can abide.

Mercy. "Well," said MERCY, "if nobody will have me, I will die a maid; or my conditions shall be to me as a husband. For I cannot change my nature; and to have one that lies cross to me in this, that I purpose never to admit of as long as I live. I had a sister named BOUNTIFUL that was married to one of these churls; but he and she could never agree: but because my sister was resolved to do as she had begun, that is, to show kindness to the poor, therefore her husband first cried her down at the cross, and then turned her out of his doors."

Pru. And yet he was a professor, I warrant you.

Mercy. Yes, such a one as he was; and of such as he the world is now full: but I am for none of them all.

The Pilgrim's Progress - Part Two
The Author's Way of Sending Forth His Second Part of the Pilgrim | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26
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