« 上一页继续 »
"My dark and cloudy words, they do but hold The truth, as cabinets inclose the gold.
"The prophets used much by metaphors To set forth truths: yea, whoso considers Christ, his apostles too, shall plainly see, That truths to this day in such mantles be.
"Am I afraid to say, that Holy Writ,
"Come, let my carper to his life now look,
That they will take my meaning in these lines
"Sound words, I know, Timothy is to use,
That gold, those pearls, and precious stones, that were
"Let me add one word more. O man of God,
Put on the words, things, readers; or be rude
Seek the advance of truth, this or that way;
God better pleased by their words or ways,
2.I find that men (as high as trees) will write
3. "I find that Holy Writ, in many places,
That pulls the strong down, and makes weak ones stand.
"It shows you too, who set out for life amain,
"This book will make a traveller of thee,
"Art thou for something rare and profitable?
"This book is wrote in such a dialect,
"Would'st thou divert thyself from melancholy?
SIMILITUDE OF A DREAM.
AS I walked through the wilderness of this world, I lighted on a certain place, where was a den;* and laid me down in that place to sleep and as I slept, I dreamed a dream. I dreamed, and behold, I saw a man clothed with rags, standing in a certain place, with his face from his own house, a book in his hand, and a great burthen upon his back. I looked, and saw him open the book, and read therein; and as he read, he wept, and trembled; and, not being able longer to contain, he brake out with a lamentable cry, saying, What shall I do? ¶
In this plight therefore he went home, and refrained himself as long as he could, that his wife and children should not perceive his distress; but he could not be silent long, because that his trouble increased; wherefore at length he brake his mind to his wife and children; and thus he began to talk to them: "O my dear wife, (said he,) and ye the children of my bowels, I, your dear friend, am, in myself, undone, by reason of a burthen that lieth hard upon me: moreover, I am certainly informed, that this our city** will be burned with fire from heaven: in which fearful overthrow, both myself, with thee my wife, and you my sweet babes, shall miserably come to ruin, except (the which yet I see not) some way of escape may be found, whereby we may be delivered."
At this, his relations were sore amazed; not for that they believed that what he had said to them was true, but because
*The jail. Mr. Bunyan here alludes to his own hard measure; having, at the session in 1660, been convicted of holding unlawful assemblies and conventicles; and thereupon committed to prison; and was there confined twelve years.
† Isaiah Ixiv. 6.
Luke xiv. 33.
Psalm xxxviii. 4. **The present world.
they thought some frenzy-distemper had got into his head; therefore, it drawing towards night, and they hoping that sleep might settle his brains; with all haste they got him to bed. But the night was as troublesome to him as the day; wherefore, instead of sleeping, he spent it in sighs and tears. So when the morning was come, they would know how he did; he told them, "Worse and worse;" he also set to talking to them again; but they began to be hardened. They also thought to drive away his distemper by harsh and surly carriage to him; sometimes they would deride, sometimes they would chide, and sometimes they would quite neglect him. Wherefore he began to retire himself to his chamber to pray for, and pity them; and also to condole his own misery: he would also walk solitarily in the fields, sometimes reading, and sometimes praying: and thus for some days he spent his time.
Now I saw upon a time, when he was walking in the fields, that he was (as he was wont) reading in his book, and greatly distressed in his mind; and as he read, he burst out, as he had done before, crying, "What shall I do to be saved?"*
I saw also that he looked this way, and that way, as if he would run; yet he stood still; because (as I perceived) he could not tell which way to go. I looked then, and saw a man named Evangelist, coming to him, and asked, "Wherefore dost thou cry?"
He answered, "Sir, I perceive, by the book in my hand, that I am condemned to die;t and after that to come to judgment; and I find that I am not‡ willing to do the first, nor able to do the second."
Then said Evangelist; "Why not willing to die, since this life is attended with so many evils?" The man answered, "Because I fear that this burthen that is upon my back, will sink me lower than the grave; and I shall fall into Tophet. And, sir, if I be not fit to go to prison, I am not fit to go to judgment, and from thence to execution: and the thoughts of these things make me cry."
Then said Evangelist, "If this be thy condition, why standest thou still?" He answered, "Because I know not whither to go." Then he gave him, a parchment roll, T and there was written within, Fly from the wrath to come.** The man therefore read it, and looking upon Evangelist very carefully, said, "Whither must I fly?" Then said
*Acts xvi. 30, 31. Ezek. xxii. 14. **Matt. iii. 7,
† Heb. ix. 27. Job xvi. 21, 22. Isa. xxx. 33. Conviction of the necessity of flying,