BLTC Press Titles

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Vanity Fair

William Thackery

Novalis Including Hymns to the Night

Novalis, George MacDonald, Thomas Carlyle

Paradoxes of the Highest Science

Eliphas Levi

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

A. Conan Doyle

Bunyan's Pilgrim's progress in modern English

by John Bunyan


Faith. "What would you have me do?"

Chr. "Why, go to him, and enter into some serious talk about the power of religion, and ask him plainly, after he has agreed with you in what you say, as of course he will, whether this power is established in his heart, house, or general conduct."

Faith. Then Faithful stepped forward again, and said to Talkative: "Well, how do you feel? How are you now?"

Talk. "Thank you, well: I thought we should have had a great deal of talk by this time."

Faith. "Well, let us begin now; and since you left it with me to state the question we shall talk about, let it be this: 'How does the saving grace of God show itself, when it is in a man's heart ?'"

Talk. "I perceive, then, that our talk must be about the power of things. Well, it is a very good question, and I shall be willing to answer you. And take my answer in brief, thus. First, where the grace of God is in the heart, it causes there a great outcry^ against sin. Secondly"

Faith. "Nay, hold, let us consTdeFone at a time. I think you should rather say, 'It shows itself by inclining the soul to abhor its sin.'"

Talk. "Why, what difference is there between crying out against sin and abhorring it?"

Faith. "Oh! a great deal. A man may cry out against sin, from policy; but he cannot abhor it except from a godly antipathy to it. I have heard many a one cry out against sin in the pulpit, who all the same could abide it well enough in the heart, house, and general conduct, io Joseph's mistress cried out with a loud voice, as if she had been very chaste ; but, notwithstanding, she would willingly have committed gross sin with him. Some cry out against sin, even as a mother cries out against her child in her lap, when she calls it 'naughty child,' and then falls to hugging and kissing it."

Talk. "You lie in wait for my words, to catch me, I perceive."

Faith. "No, not I, I am only for setting things right. But what is the second thing which, you say, would signify

20 the working of grace in the heart?"

Talk. "Great knowledge of the mysteries of the Gospel." Faith. "This sign should have been first; but first or last, it is also false; for knowledge, great knowledge, of the mysteries of the Gospel may be obtained and yet there may be no working of grace in the soul. In fact, though a man have all knowledge, he may yet be nothing, and so, consequently, be no child of God (l Cor. xiii. 2). When Christ said, 'Do you know all these things?' and the disciples had answered, 'Yes,' he added, 'Blessed are you if you do

30 them.' He does not make the blessing lie in the knowing of them, but in the doing of them. For there is a knowledge that is not attended with doing: 'He that knows his master's will, and does not do it.' A man may know like an angel, and yet be no Christian; therefore your sign of saving grace is not true. Indeed, to know is a thing that pleases talkers and boasters ; but to do is that which pleases God. Not that the heart can be good without knowledge, for without that the heart is nothing. Therefore there is knowledge and knowledge,—knowledge that rests in mere speculation about things, and knowledge that is accompanied with the grace of faith and love, which sets a man to do the will of God from his heart: the first kind of knowledge will serve the talker; but without the second, the true Christian is not content. 'Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart,' says the writer of the hundred and nineteenth 10 Psalm."

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