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 Main Index : Writings : John Bunyan : Holy War Index : The Holy War - Part 20
The Holy War - Part 19 | Index | No More



Then stood forth Mr. Diligence, and said, 'My lord, as I was upon my watch such a night at the head of Bad Street, in this town, I chanced to hear a muttering within this gentleman's house. Then, thought I, what is to do here? So I went up close, but very softly, to the side of the house to listen, thinking, as indeed it fell out, that there I might light upon some Diabolonian conventicle. So, as I said, I drew nearer and nearer; and when I was got up close to the wall, it was but a while before I perceived that there were outlandish men in the house; but I did well understand their speech, for I have been a traveller myself. Now, hearing such language in such a tottering cottage as this old gentleman dwelt in, I clapped mine ear to a hole in the window, and there heard them talk as followeth. This old Mr. Questioning asked these doubters what they were, whence they came, and what was their business in these parts; and they told him to all these questions, yet he did entertain them. He also asked what numbers there were of them; and they told him ten thousand men. He then asked them, why they made no more manly assault upon Mansoul; and they told him: so he called their general coward, for marching off when he should have fought for his prince. Further, this old Evil- Questioning wished, and I heard him wish, would all the ten thousand doubters were now in Mansoul, and himself at the head of them. He bid them also to take heed and lie quat; for if they were taken they must die, although they had heads of gold.' Then said the court: 'Mr. Evil-Questioning, here is now another witness against you, and his testimony is full: 1. He swears that you did receive these men into your house, and that you did nourish them there, though you knew that they were Diabolonians, and the King's enemies. 2. He swears that you did wish ten thousand of them in Mansoul. 3. He swears that you did give them advice to be quat and close, lest they were taken by the King's servants. All which manifesteth that thou art a Diabolonian; but hadst thou been a friend to the King, thou wouldst have apprehended them.'

Then said Evil-Questioning: 'To the first of these I answer, The men that came into mine house were strangers, and I took them in; and is it now become a crime in Mansoul for a man to entertain strangers? That I did also nourish them is true; and why should my charity be blamed? As for the reason why I wished ten thousand of them in Mansoul, I never told it to the witnesses, nor to themselves. I might wish them to be taken, and so my wish might mean well to Mansoul, for aught that any yet knows. I did also bid them take heed that they fell not into the captains' hands; but that might be because I am unwilling that any man should be slain, and not because I would have the King's enemies as such escape.'

My Lord Mayor then replied: 'That though it was a virtue to entertain strangers, yet it was treason to entertain the King's enemies. And for what else thou hast said, thou dost by words but labour to evade and defer the execution of judgment. But could there be no more proved against thee but that thou art a Diabolonian, thou must for that die the death by the law; but to be a receiver, a nourisher, a countenancer, and a harbourer of others of them, yea, of outlandish Diabolonians, yea, of them that came from far on purpose to cut off and destroy our Mansoul - this must not be borne.'

Then said Evil-Questioning: 'I see how the game will go: I must die for my name, and for my charity.' And so he held his peace.

Then they called the outlandish doubters to the bar, and the first of them that was arraigned was the election doubter. So his indictment was read; and because he was an outlandish man, the substance of it was told him by an interpreter; namely, 'That he was there charged with being an enemy of Emmanuel the Prince, a hater of the town of Mansoul, and an opposer of her most wholesome doctrine.'

Then the judge asked him if he would plead? but he said only this - That he confessed that he was an election doubter, and that that was the religion that he had ever been brought up in. And said, moreover, 'If I must die for my religion, I trow, I shall die a martyr, and so I care the less.'

JUDGE. Then it was replied: 'To question election, is to overthrow a great doctrine of the gospel, namely, the omnisciency, and power, and will of God; to take away the liberty of God with his creature, to stumble the faith of the town of Mansoul, and to make salvation to depend upon works, and not upon grace. It also belied the word, and disquieted the minds of the men of Mansoul; therefore by the best of laws he must die.'

Then was the vocation doubter called, and set to the bar; and his indictment for substance was the same with the other, only he was particularly charged with denying the calling of Mansoul.

The judge asked him also what he had to say for himself?

So he replied: 'That he never believed that there was any such thing as a distinct and powerful call of God to Mansoul; otherwise than by the general voice of the word, nor by that neither, otherwise than as it exhorted them to forbear evil, and to do that which is good, and in so doing a promise of happiness is annexed.'

Then said the judge: 'Thou art a Diabolonian, and hast denied a great part of one of the most experimental truths of the Prince of the town of Mansoul; for he has called, and she has heard a most distinct and powerful call of her Emmanuel, by which she has been quickened, awakened, and possessed with heavenly grace to desire to have communion with her Prince, to serve him, and to do his will, and to look for her happiness merely of his good pleasure. And for thine abhorrence of this good doctrine, thou must die the death.'

Then the grace doubter was called, and his indictment was read and he replied thereto: 'That though he was of the land of doubting, his father was the offspring of a Pharisee, and lived in good fashion among his neighbours, and that he taught him to believe, and believe it I do, and will, that Mansoul shall never be saved freely by grace.'

Then said the judge: 'Why, the law of the Prince is plain: 1. Negatively, "not of works:" 2. Positively, "by grace you are saved." And thy religion settleth in and upon the works of the flesh; for the works of the law are the works of the flesh. Besides, in saying as thou hast done, thou hast robbed God of His glory, and given it to a sinful man; thou hast robbed Christ of the necessity of His undertaking, and the sufficiency thereof, and hast given both these to the works of the flesh. Thou hast despised the work of the Holy Ghost, and hast magnified the will of the flesh, and of the legal mind. Thou art a Diabolonian, the son of a Diabolonian; and for thy Diabolonian principles thou must die.'

The court then, having proceeded thus far with them, sent out the jury, who forthwith brought them in guilty of death. Then stood up the Recorder, and addressed himself to the prisoners: 'You, the prisoners at the bar, you have been here indicted, and proved guilty of high crimes against Emmanuel our Prince, and against the welfare of the famous town of Mansoul, crimes for which you must be put to death, and die ye accordingly.' So they were sentenced to the death of the cross. The place assigned them for execution, was that where Diabolus drew up his last army against Mansoul; save only that old Evil-Questioning was hanged at the top of Bad Street, just over against his own door.

When the town of Mansoul had thus far rid themselves of their enemies, and of the troublers of their peace, in the next place a strict commandment was given out, that yet my Lord Willbewill should, with Diligence his man, search for, and do his best to apprehend what town Diabolonians were yet left alive in Mansoul. The names of several of them were, Mr. Fooling, Mr. Let-Good-Slip, Mr. Slavish-Fear, Mr. No-Love, Mr. Mistrust, Mr. Flesh, and Mr. Sloth. It was also commanded, that he should apprehend Mr. Evil-Questioning's children, that he left behind him, and that they should demolish his house. The children that he left behind him were these: Mr. Doubt, and he was his eldest son; the next to him was Legal-Life, Unbelief, Wrong-Thoughts-of-Christ, Clip- Promise, Carnal-Sense, Live-by-Feeling, Self-Love. All these he had by one wife, and her name was No-Hope; she was the kinswoman of old Incredulity, for he was her uncle; and when her father, old Dark, was dead, he took her and brought her up, and when she was marriageable, he gave her to this old Evil-Questioning to wife.

Now the Lord Willbewill did put into execution his commission, with great Diligence, his man. He took Fooling in the streets, and hanged him up in Want-wit-Alley, over against his own house. This Fooling was he that would have had the town of Mansoul deliver up Captain Credence into the hands of Diabolus, provided that then he would have withdrawn his force out of the town. He also took Mr. Let-Good-Slip one day as he was busy in the market, and executed him according to law. Now there was an honest poor man in Mansoul, and his name was Mr. Meditation, one of no great account in the days of apostasy, but now of repute with the best of the town. This man, therefore, they were willing to prefer. Now Mr. Let-Good-Slip had a great deal of wealth heretofore in Mansoul, and, at Emmanuel's coming, it was sequestered to the use of the Prince: this, therefore, was now given to Mr. Meditation, to improve for the common good, and after him to his son, Mr. Think-Well; this Think-Well he had by Mrs. Piety his wife, and she was the daughter of Mr. Recorder.

After this, my lord apprehended Clip-Promise: now because he was a notorious villain, for by his doings much of the King's coin was abused, therefore he was made a public example. He was arraigned and judged to be first set in the pillory, then to be whipped by all the children and servants in Mansoul, and then to be hanged till he was dead. Some may wonder at the severity of this man's punishment; but those that are honest traders in Mansoul, are sensible of the great abuse that one clipper of promises in little time may do to the town of Mansoul. And truly my judgment is, that all those of his name and life should be served even as he.

He also apprehended Carnal-Sense, and put him in hold; but how it came about, I cannot tell, but he brake prison, and made his escape: yea, and the bold villain will not yet quit the town, but lurks in the Diabolonian dens a days, and haunts like a ghost honest men's houses a nights. Wherefore, there was a proclamation set up in the market-place in Mansoul, signifying that whosoever could discover Carnal- Sense, and apprehend him and slay him, should be admitted daily to the Prince's table, and should be made keeper of the treasure of Mansoul. Many, therefore, did bend themselves to do this thing, but take him and slay him they could not, though often he was discovered.

But my lord took Mr. Wrong-Thoughts-of-Christ, and put him in prison, and he died there; though it was long first, for he died of a lingering consumption.

Self-Love was also taken and committed to custody; but there were many that were allied to him in Mansoul, so his judgment was deferred. But at last Mr. Self-Denial stood up, and said: 'If such villains as these may be winked at in Mansoul, I will lay down my commission.' He also took him from the crowd, and had him among his soldiers, and there he was brained. But some in Mansoul muttered at it, though none durst speak plainly, because Emmanuel was in town. But this brave act of Captain Self-Denial came to the Prince's ears; so he sent for him, and made him a lord in Mansoul. My Lord Willbewill also obtained great commendations of Emmanuel, for what he had done for the town of Mansoul.

Then my Lord Self-Denial took courage, and set to the pursuing of the Diabolonians, with my Lord Willbewill; and they took Live-by-Feeling, and they took Legal-Life, and put them in hold till they died. But Mr. Unbelief was a nimble Jack: him they could never lay hold of, though they attempted to do it often. He therefore, and some few more of the subtlest of the Diabolonian tribe, did yet remain in Mansoul, to the time that Mansoul left off to dwell any longer in the kingdom of Universe. But they kept them to their dens and holes: if one of them did appear, or happen to be seen in any of the streets of the town of Mansoul, the whole town would be up in arms after them; yea, the very children in Mansoul would cry out after them as after a thief, and would wish that they might stone them to death with stones. And now did Mansoul arrive to some good degree of peace and quiet; her Prince also did abide within her borders; her captains, also, and her soldiers did their duties; and Mansoul minded her trade that she had with the country that was afar off; also she was busy in her manufacture.

When the town of Mansoul had thus far rid themselves of so many of their enemies, and the troublers of their peace, the Prince sent to them, and appointed a day wherein he would, at the market-place, meet the whole people, and there give them in charge concerning some further matters, that, if observed, would tend to their further safety and comfort, and to the condemnation and destruction of their home-bred Diabolonians. So the day appointed was come, and the townsmen met together; Emmanuel also came down in his chariot, and all his captains in their state attending him, on the right hand and on the left. Then was an oyes made for silence, and, after some mutual carriages of love, the Prince began, and thus proceeded:-

'You, my Mansoul, and the beloved of mine heart, many and great are the privileges that I have bestowed upon you; I have singled you out from others, and have chosen you to myself, not for your worthiness, but for mine own sake. I have also redeemed you, not only from the dread of my Father's law, but from the hand of Diabolus. This I have done because I loved you, and because I have set my heart upon you to do you good. I have also, that all things, that might hinder thy way to the pleasures of paradise might be taken out of the way, laid down for thee for thy soul a plenary satisfaction, and have bought thee to myself; a price not of corruptible things, as of silver and gold, but a price of blood, mine own blood, which I have freely spilled upon the ground to make thee mine. So I have reconciled thee, O my Mansoul, to my Father, and entrusted thee in the mansion houses that are with my Father in the royal city, where things are, O my Mansoul, that eye hath not seen, nor hath entered into the heart of man to conceive.

'Besides, O my Mansoul, thou seest what I have done, and how I have taken thee out of the hands of thine enemies: unto whom thou hadst deeply revolted from my Father, and by whom thou wast content to be possessed, and also to be destroyed. I came to thee first by my law, then by my gospel, to awaken thee, and show thee my glory. And thou knowest what thou wast, what thou saidst, what thou didst, and how many times thou rebelledst against my Father and me; yet I left thee not as thou seest this day, but came to thee, have borne thy manners, have waited upon thee, and, after all, accepted of thee, even of my mere grace and favour; and would not suffer thee to be lost, as thou most willingly wouldst have been. I also compassed thee about, and afflicted thee on every side, that I might make thee weary of thy ways, and bring down thy heart with molestation to a willingness to close with thy good and happiness. And when I had gotten a complete conquest over thee, I turned it to thy advantage.

'Thou seest, also, what a company of my Father's host I have lodged within thy borders: captains and rulers, soldiers and men of war, engines and excellent devices to subdue and bring down thy foes; thou knowest my meaning, O Mansoul. And they are my servants, and thine, too, Mansoul. Yea, my design of possessing of thee with them, and the natural tendency of each of them is to defend, purge, strengthen, and sweeten thee for myself, O Mansoul, and to make thee meet for my Father's presence, blessing, and glory; for thou, my Mansoul, art created to be prepared unto these.

'Thou seest, moreover, my Mansoul, how I have passed by thy backslidings, and have healed thee. Indeed I was angry with thee, but I have turned mine anger away from thee, because I loved thee still, and mine anger and mine indignation is ceased in the destruction of thine enemies, O Mansoul. Nor did thy goodness fetch me again unto thee, after that I for thy transgressions have hid my face, and withdrawn my presence from thee. The way of backsliding was thine, but the way and means of thy recovery was mine. I invented the means of thy return; it was I that made an hedge and a wall, when thou wast beginning to turn to things in which I delighted not. It was I that made thy sweet bitter, thy day night, thy smooth way thorny, and that also confounded all that sought thy destruction. It was I that set Mr. Godly- Fear to work in Mansoul. It was I that stirred up thy conscience and understanding, thy will and thy affections, after thy great and woful decay. It was I that put life into thee, O Mansoul, to seek me, that thou mightest find me, and in thy finding find thine own health, happiness, and salvation. It was I that fetched the second time the Diabolonians out of Mansoul; and it was I that overcame them, and that destroyed them before thy face.

'And now, my Mansoul, I am returned to thee in peace, and thy transgressions against me are as if they had not been. Nor shall it be with thee as in former days, but I will do better for thee than at thy beginning.

For yet a little while, O my Mansoul, even after a few more times are gone over thy head, I will (but be not thou troubled at what I say) take down this famous town of Mansoul, stick and stone, to the ground. And I will carry the stones thereof, and the timber thereof, and the walls thereof, and the dust thereof, and the inhabitants thereof, into mine own country, even into a kingdom of my Father; and will there set it up in such strength and glory, as it never did see in the kingdom where now it is placed. I will even there set it up for my Father's habitation; for for that purpose it was at first erected in the kingdom of Universe; and there will I make it a spectacle of wonder, a monument of mercy, and the admirer of its own mercy. There shall the natives of Mansoul see all that, of which they have seen nothing here: there shall they be equal to those unto whom they have been inferior here. And there shalt thou, O my Mansoul, have such communion with me, with my Father, and with your Lord Secretary, as it is not possible here to be enjoyed, nor ever could be, shouldest thou live in Universe the space of a thousand years.

'And there, O my Mansoul, thou shalt be afraid of murderers no more; of Diabolonians, and their threats, no more. There, there shall be no more plots, nor contrivances, nor designs against thee, O my Mansoul. There thou shalt no more hear the evil-tidings, or the noise of the Diabolonian drum. There thou shalt not see the Diabolonian standard-bearers, nor yet behold Diabolus's standard. No Diabolonian mount shall be cast up against thee there; nor shall there the Diabolonian standard be set up to make thee afraid. There thou shalt not need captains, engines, soldiers, and men of war. There thou shalt meet with no sorrow, nor grief, nor shall it be possible that any Diabolonian should again, for ever, be able to creep into thy skirts, burrow in thy walls, or be seen again within thy borders all the days of eternity. Life shall there last longer than here you are able to desire it should; and yet it shall always be sweet and new, nor shall any impediment attend it for ever.

'There, O Mansoul, thou shalt meet with many of those that have been like thee, and that have been partakers of thy sorrows; even such as I have chosen, and redeemed, and set apart, as thou, for my Father's court and city-royal. All they will be glad in thee, and thou, when thou seest them, shalt be glad in thine heart.

'There are things, O Mansoul, even things of my Father's providing, and mine, that never were seen since the beginning of the world; and they are laid up with my Father, and sealed up among his treasures for thee, till thou shalt come thither to enjoy them. I told you before, that I would remove my Mansoul, and set it up elsewhere; and where I will set it, there are those that love thee, and those that rejoice in thee now; but how much more, when they shall see thee exalted to honour! My Father will then send them for you to fetch you; and their bosoms are chariots to put you in. And you, O my Mansoul, shall ride upon the wings of the wind. They will come to convey, conduct, and bring you to that, when your eyes see more, that will be your desired haven.

'And thus, O my Mansoul, I have showed unto thee what shall be done to thee hereafter, if thou canst hear, if thou canst understand; and now I will tell thee what at present must be thy duty and practice, until I come and fetch thee to myself, according as is related in the Scriptures of truth.

'First, I charge thee that thou dost hereafter keep more white and clean the liveries which I gave thee before my last withdrawing from thee. Do it, I say, for this will be thy wisdom. They are in themselves fine linen, but thou must keep them white and clean. This will be your wisdom, your honour, and will be greatly for my glory. When your garments are white, the world will count you mine. Also, when your garments are white, then I am delighted in your ways; for then your goings to and fro will be like a flash of lightning, that those that are present must take notice of; also their eyes will be made to dazzle thereat. Deck thyself, therefore, according to my bidding, and make thyself by my law straight steps for thy feet; so shall thy King greatly desire thy beauty, for he is thy Lord, and worship thou him.

'Now, that thou mayest keep them as I bid thee, I have, as I before did tell thee, provided for thee an open fountain to wash thy garments in. Look, therefore, that thou wash often in my fountain, and go not in defiled garments; for as it is to my dishonour and my disgrace, so it will be to thy discomfort, when you shall walk in filthy garments. Let not, therefore, my garments, your garments, the garments that I gave thee, be defiled or spotted by the flesh. Keep thy garments always white, and let thy head lack no ointment.

'My Mansoul, I have ofttimes delivered thee from the designs, plots, attempts, and conspiracies of Diabolus; and for all this I ask thee nothing, but that thou render not to me evil for my good; but that thou bear in mind my love, and the continuation of my kindness to my beloved Mansoul, so as to provoke thee to walk in thy measure according to the benefit bestowed on thee. Of old, the sacrifices were bound with coords to the horns of the altar. Consider what is said to thee, O my blessed Mansoul.

'O my Mansoul, I have lived, I have died, I live, and will die no more for thee. I live, that thou mayest not die. Because I live, thou shalt live also. I reconciled thee to my Father by the blood of my cross; and being reconciled, thou shalt live through me. I will pray for thee; I will fight for thee; I will yet do thee good.

'Nothing can hurt thee but sin; nothing can grieve me but sin; nothing can make thee base before thy foes but sin: take heed of sin, my Mansoul.

'And dost thou know why I at first, and do still, suffer Diabolonians to dwell in thy walls, O Mansoul? It is to keep thee wakening, to try thy love, to make thee watchful, and to cause thee yet to prize my noble captains, their soldiers, and my mercy.

'It is also, that yet thou mayest be made to remember what a deplorable condition thou once wast in. I mean when, not some, but all did dwell, not in thy walls, but in thy castle, and in thy stronghold, O Mansoul.

'O my Mansoul, should I slay all them within, many there be without, that would bring thee into bondage; for were all these within cut off, those without would find thee sleeping; and then, as in a moment, they would swallow up my Mansoul. I therefore left them in thee, not to do thee hurt (the which they yet will, if thou hearken to them, and serve them,) but to do thee good, the which they must, if thou watch and fight against them. Know, therefore, that whatever they shall tempt thee to, my design is, that they should drive thee, not further off, but nearer to my father, to learn thee war, to make petitioning desirable to thee, and to make thee little in thine own eyes. Hearken diligently to this, my Mansoul.

'Show me, then, thy love, my Mansoul, and let not those that are within thy walls, take thy affections off from him that hath redeemed thy soul. Yea, let the sight of a Diabolonian heighten thy love to me. I came once, and twice, and thrice, to save thee from the poison of those arrows that would have wrought thy death: stand for me, thy Friend, my Mansoul, against the Diabolonians, and I will stand for thee before my Father, and all his court. Love me against temptation, and I will love thee notwithstanding thine infirmities.

'O my Mansoul, remember what my captains, my soldiers, and mine engines have done for thee. They have fought for thee, they have suffered by thee, they have borne much at thy hands to do thee good, O Mansoul. Hadst thou not had them to help thee, Diabolus had certainly made a hand of thee. Nourish them, therefore, my Mansoul. When thou dost well, they will be well; when thou dost ill, they will be ill, and sick, and weak. Make not my captains sick, O Mansoul; for if they be sick, thou canst not be well; if they be weak, thou canst not be strong; if they be faint, thou canst not be stout and valiant for thy King, O Mansoul. Nor must thou think always to live by sense: thou must live upon my word. Thou must believe, O my Mansoul, when I am from thee, that yet I love thee, and bear thee upon mine heart for ever.

'Remember, therefore, O my Mansoul, that thou art beloved of me: as I have, therefore, taught thee to watch, to fight, to pray, and to make war against my foes; so now I command thee to believe that my love is constant to thee. O my Mansoul, how have I set my heart, my love upon thee! Watch. Behold, I lay none other burden upon thee, than what thou hast already. Hold fast, till I come.'


The Holy War - Part 19 | Index | No More

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