Pilgrims Progress

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Timorous and Mistrust

I looked then after CHRISTIAN, to see him go up the hill, when 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 midway 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. 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 him as he stood by the cross. Thus pleasing himself awhile, 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 came one to him, and awaked him, saying, "Go to the ant, thou sluggard: consider her ways, and be wise" (Pr 6:6). 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 against him furiously. The name of the one was TIMOROUS, and the name of the other MISTRUST; to whom CHRISTIAN said, "Sirs, what’s the matter? You run 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."

Mistrust. "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."

Christian. Then said CHRISTIAN, "You make me afraid; but whither shall I fly to be safe? If I go back to mine 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 !