Home Pilgrim's Progress Continued from Part 21 - Clips/Read more/Lists Pilgrim and Hopeful meet Flatterer. Part 25.
Pilgrim and Hopeful meet Flatterer. Part 25. | Print |

                  

                                                                Part 25.

   

  

  ¶ So they went on, and Ignorance followed. They went then till they came

                                

   at a place where they saw a way put itself into their way, and seemed

   withal to lie as strait as the way which they should go; and here they

   knew not which of the two to take, for both seemed strait before them:

   therefore here they stood still to consider. And as they were thinking

   about the way, behold a man black of flesh, but covered with a very

   light robe, come to them, and asked them why they stood there. They

   answered, they were going to the Celestial City, but knew not which of

   these ways to take. "Follow me," said the man, "it is thither that I am

   going." So they followed him in the way that but now came into the

   road, which by degrees turned, and turned them so far from the city

   that they desired to go to, that in a little time their faces were

   turned away from it; yet they follow him. But by and by, before they

   were aware, he led them both within the compass of a net, in which they

   were both so entangled that they knew not what to do; and with that the

   white robe fell off the black man's back. Then they saw where they

   were. Wherefore there they lay crying some time, for they could not get

   themselves out.

 

   Christian: Then said Christian to his fellow, Now do I see myself in an

   error. Did not the shepherds bid us beware of the Flatterer? As is the

          

              

   saying of the wise man, so we have found it this day: "A man that

   flattereth his neighbor, spreadeth a net for his feet."  Prov. 29:5.

 

   Hopeful: They also gave us a note of directions about the way, for our

   more sure finding thereof; but therein we have also forgotten to read,

   and have not kept ourselves from the paths of the destroyer. Here David

   was wiser than we; for saith he, "Concerning the works of men, by the

   word of thy lips I have kept me from the paths of the Destroyer."  Psa.

   17:4. Thus they lay bewailing themselves in the net. At last they

   espied a Shining One coming towards them with a whip of small cords in

   his hand. When he was come to the place where they were, he asked them

   whence they came, and what they did there. They told him that they were

   poor pilgrims going to Zion, but were led out of their way by a black

   man clothed in white, who bid us, said they, follow him, for he was

   going thither too. Then said he with the whip, It is Flatterer, a false

   apostle, that hath transformed himself into an angel of light.  Dan.

   11:32; 2 Cor. 11:13,14. So he rent the net, and let the men out. Then

   said he to them, Follow me, that I may set you in your way again. So he

   led them back to the way which they had left to follow the Flatterer.

   Then he asked them, saying, Where did you lie the last night? They

   said, With the shepherds upon the Delectable Mountains. He asked them

   then if they had not of the shepherds a note of direction for the way.

   They answered, Yes. But did you not, said he, when you were at a stand,

   pluck out and read your note? They answered, No. He asked them, Why?

   They said they forgot. He asked, moreover, if the shepherds did not bid

   them beware of the Flatterer. They answered, Yes; but we did not

   imagine, said they, that this fine-spoken man had been he.  Rom.

   16:17,18.

 

   ¶ Then I saw in my dream, that he commanded them to lie down; which when

   they did, he chastised them sore, to teach them the good way wherein

   they should walk,  Deut. 25:2; 2 Chron. 6:27; and as he chastised them,

   he said, "As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten; be zealous,

   therefore, and repent."  Rev. 3:19. This done, he bids them to go on

   their way, and take good heed to the other directions of the shepherds.

   So they thanked him for all his kindness, and went softly along the

   right way, singing,

 

   "Come hither, you that walk along the way,

 

   See how the pilgrims fare that go astray:

 

   They catched are in an entangling net,

 

   Cause they good counsel lightly did forget:

 

   'Tis true, they rescued were; but yet, you see,

 

    They're scouged to boot; let this your caution be."

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