Symbols In The Pilgrim's Progress

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The Pilgrim’s Progress
Sin is the act of transgression against divine law. During the 1600s in England, there were two Conventicle Acts that made it a crime for any five people of the same family to meet in a private house under color of religion. John Bunyan, an evangelical Baptist preacher, was incarcerated for twelve years at the Bedford jail because he insisted on preaching the word of Christ. During his incarceration, he used his time wisely to write a novel called, The Pilgrim’s Progress, where a devoted christian sets out on a pilgrimage in a attempt to save his soul. In the novel, The Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan, he uses symbolism through the main character, Christian and the difficult obstacles he has to face in order to portray
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Christian and his neighbor, Pliable, set out on a pilgrimage journey together to get to the Celestial City but end up falling in the Slough of Despond, where they struggle for some time to escape. After Christian and Pliable fall into the Slough of Despond, “here, therefore, they wallowed for a time, being grievously bedaubed with dirt; and Christian, because of the burden that was on his back, began to sink in the mire” (Bunyan 20). The reason why Christian is struggling to escape the Slough of Despond is because his burden is weighing down on him heavily, which is causing him to sink. As he struggles in despondency, he still feels the shame and filth because of his sin but he remains determined to find the Wicket Gate in order to for him to continue on his pathway towards redemption. The Slough of Despond symbolizes all the fears and doubts that arise in a sinner’s soul while he is on his way to salvation. Bunyan uses the Slough of Despond to symbolize how burdens from sins affect individuals. As individuals go through life carrying burdens, the guilt and shame of the sin that one committed starts to take a toll on them by weighing them down causing there to be a constant reminder of what the individual did that was bad to the point of where they feel like they are sinking in a mire of fear and doubt. The individual fears that redemption isn’t possible for themselves and they doubt that they will be forgiven for the sin

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