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Instead he devoted his time to writing and preaching. His preaching also took him to London, where Lord Mayor Sir John Shorter became a friend and presented him with a silver-mounted walking stick. Two events marred Bunyan's life during the later s. Firstly he became embroiled in a scandal concerning a young woman called Agnes Beaumont. When going to preach in Gamlingay in he allowed Beaumont, a member of the Bedford Meeting, to ride pillion on his horse, much to the anger of her father, who then died suddenly. His daughter was initially suspected of poisoning him, though the coroner found he had died of natural causes.

Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners - John Bunyan

In , on his way to London, Bunyan made a detour to Reading, Berkshire , to try and resolve a quarrel between a father and son. Continuing to London to the house of his friend, grocer John Strudwick of Snow Hill in the City of London, he was caught in a storm and fell ill with a fever. He died in Strudwick's house on the morning of 31 August and was buried in the tomb belonging to Strudwick in Bunhill Fields nonconformist burial ground in London.

His widow Elizabeth died in Between , when he published his first work, Some Gospel Truths Opened a tract against the Quakers , and his death in , Bunyan published 42 titles.

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A further two works, including his Last Sermon, were published the following year by George Larkin. In Southwark comb-maker Charles Doe, who was a friend of Bunyan's later years, brought out, with the collaboration of Bunyan's widow, a collection of the author's works, including 12 previously unpublished titles, mostly sermons. Six years later Doe published The Heavenly Footman and finally in Relation of My Imprisonment was published, giving a total of 58 published titles. It is the allegory The Pilgrim's Progress , written during Bunyan's twelve-year imprisonment although not published until six years after his release, that made Bunyan's name as an author with its immediate success.

It remains the book for which Bunyan is best remembered. Even his characters, like the Evangelist as influenced by John Gifford, are reflections of real people. Further allegorical works were to follow: The Life and Death of Mr. Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners , a spiritual autobiography, was published in , when he was still in jail.

In a recumbent statue was created to adorn Bunyan's grave; it was restored in The site was chosen by Boehm for its significance as a crossroads. Bunyan is depicted expounding the Bible, to an invisible congregation, with a broken fetter representing his imprisonment by his left foot. There are three scenes from "The Pilgrim's Progress " on the stone plinth: Christian at the wicket gate ; his fight with Apollyon ; and losing his burden at the foot of the cross of Jesus. Bunyan is best remembered for The Pilgrim's Progress , a book which gained immediate popularity.

By , four years after the author's death, publisher Charles Doe estimated that , copies had been printed in England, as well as editions "in France, Holland, New England and Welch". During the 18th century Bunyan's unpolished style fell out of favour, but his popularity returned with Romanticism , poet Robert Southey writing an appreciative biography in Bunyan's reputation was further enhanced by the evangelical revival and he became a favourite author of the Victorians. Bunyan's work, in particular The Pilgrim's Progress , has reached a wider audience through stage productions, film, TV, and radio.

John Bunyan had six children, five of whom are known to have married, of which four had children. Moot Hall Museum in Elstow has a record of John's descendants, down to the nineteenth century but as of September , no verifiable trace of later descendants has been found. The best collection of Bunyan's writing appears in The Works of John Bunyan, edited by George Offor and published in London in three volumes between and , containing 61 unique works. A revised edition was published in From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For the Gaelic footballer and hurler, see John Bunyan sportsperson.


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This section does not cite any sources. Published February 1st by Echo Library first published To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners , please sign up. Be the first to ask a question about Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners. Lists with This Book. Jul 18, Stuart Turton rated it really liked it.

If you pick up and read this book, one of two things will happen. You will get 15 pages in and decide its not for you, or you will carry on reading and find yourself amazed at the journey God brought this poor tinker through. I found myself at first thinking something was clinically wrong with Bunyan and maybe there was , but the more I read I wondered if there wasn't something wrong with me. Sure, one mans conversion cannot truly be poorer than another's from Heavens perspective.

However, to w If you pick up and read this book, one of two things will happen. However, to walk the struggle he walked with him left me rebuked for my thoughts of entitlement and made me thankful once again for Christ's saving work in my life. Ironically, after such a journey, I reckon Bunyan is the last saint in heaven you'd ever have to convince of Gods election.

His story, if left up to him, should have concluded in Hell, but for the intervening and saving grace of God; a grace that also sustained him in the fiery furnace of Christian persecution: Nov 24, Dave added it.

Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners by John Bunyan

What self-tortures he put himself through rather than simply believing. I can sympathize, being prone to the same sort of overthinking and navel-gazing, myself, but I confess that I laughed at him a few times. Even he called his thoughts foolish at one point, though I don't know as he ever learned to laugh at them. Sadly, Cowper never got the better of his doubts, and died in despair. Piper Poor Brother John! Piper was very enthusiastic about John Newton's pastoral care of Cowper, which was certainly generous and gracious, but the man needed a kindly smack upside the head and never received it.

He needed to learn to laugh at himself. If Bunyan had had a Newton, the latter's cheerful reasoning might have brought him out of the slough sooner. And if Newton had had a Bunyan, he'd have needed to see a podiatrist. Anyway, although I sympathized with the author's wrestling to understand the nature of salvation, it was pretty tedious at times to listen to his prolonged agonies of doubt, as I am sure it's been tedious for others to listen to mine.

Sorry 'bout that, friends! Always a bonus to have one reader throughout a whole book. Steven Escalera was solid, steady, and unannoying, for which I am grateful. Sep 03, Brian rated it it was ok. The way he got into trouble and the way he got out of trouble were both irrational.

Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners by John Bunyan

The one need not alarm, and the other can hardly help, any sane person. You didn't have to do that to yourself. Bunyan makes Luther look like a sane and socially well-adjusted human being. This is morbid introspection on steroids on stilts, and is the most excruciating thing I have read recently, t "Bunyan's crisis, as anyone can see to-day, was far more pathological than spiritual.

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This is morbid introspection on steroids on stilts, and is the most excruciating thing I have read recently, to say the least. His relapses are so frequent that it feels like a cartoon. How could somebody think that and be sane? Then again, being loth and unwilling to perish, I began to compare my sin with others to see if I could find that any of those that were saved, had done as I had done. The grip that despair has on our soul is sometimes really that deep and it seems to have attacked rather than merely depressed Bunyan.

On the other, I would not want this published in a set with practical Puritan works, because it may make some thing that something along these lines is necessary or even a natural or normal part of getting saved. Not that Bunyan was born saved. I think he was right to see that he was a poorly educated infidel at first and up to around section 49, he was just trying to "be good" rather than receiving grace. I'm especially amused that he got worried he couldn't get saved because of being an Israelite and how he realized that Muslims have just as good a claim to sincere belief as us.

His descriptions of being glibly theological are actually really good and really vivid. The moment he interrupts a bunch of women and gets convicted is an amazing moment of self-discovery that captures so much of life. I suspect we would cheer to see it happen on screen, but I do have one complaint: Whenever some Christians are just living life or discussing some theological matter, no surer way to end a decent conversation or make people, especially established Christians, feel bad is to turn the topic to "spiritual matters," especially discussions of one's sins.

I can think of few situations where such a discussion would be profitable. This comes to what I think the real flaw of the book is: Many people who have deeply emotional experiences like Bunyan do in fact think that this has earned their salvation. I've been especially guilty of this. We think that because we really meant our prayers, because we really confessed our sins, and because we really trusted in Jesus, we are saved and God is on our side. Charles Williams says somewhere that Protestants tend to not know how to imagine faith simply, slowly, almost comfortable growing. There's something to that and this gets at the heart of the issue.

We do have quite a few people who go through abnormal excitement and there is a sort of normal excitement that accompanies conversion, and we have to compare both of these things from what happened to the disciples and the Jews, which strikes me as tied up with all the differences between early modernity and the birth of spontaneity and the more public ancient world where people overflow in Psalms when they see the Spirit moving.

There's a lot in common and there's a lot that's different. I want to read more on this. Anyway, Bunyan was a good man. A troubled man who doubted himself when he was preaching and would probably have not been a fun pastor, but definitely someone fun to talk to.


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  5. He was also clearly insufficiently attuned to the concerns of his accusers: One can see the Evangelist and feel his struggle with understanding what's wrong with gathering people, and doubtless Judge Hate-Good was no caricature. One wishes he had read Richard Hooker. Bunyan's insanity was such that he devoured Scripture and not only would verses pop into his head saying "take me, take me! His Biblical allusions and metaphors are almost as powerful here as in the Pilgrim's Progress. I think one of my favorites was when he compared preaching from the pulpit against one of his own sins to Samson taking himself down with the Philistines.

    In John Bunyan, one finds a kindred spirit. May 17, Linda rated it it was amazing Shelves: John Bunyan was a non-conformist English pastor who lived from During his years of ministry, he spent approximately 14 years in prison for preaching without a legal license as required by England at the time. Bunyan first describes his pre-conversion lifestyle and attitude towards the church and Christianity. God used various people and incidents in his life to gradually bring him to true faith and repentance, but not without a long struggle with guilt, doubt, and assurance of salvation.

    Following his testimony of his conversion, Bunyan gives an account of how he came to be a minister. At first, he would share his thoughts with acquaintances in small groups, then he was encouraged to speak in meetings, which he felt unworthy but willing to do. He remarks, "I concluded, a little grace, a little love, a little of the true fear of God, is better than all the gifts…Let all men therefore prize a little with the fear of the Lord gifts indeed are desirable , but yet great grace and small gifts are better than great gifts and no grace.

    As he experienced the peace and comfort of Christ within himself, he preached the person, grace and benefits of Christ. The humility, pure heart, and godly desires of Bunyan are evident in many ways; consider his concluding remarks for example: When I would do good, evil is present with me. What a precious book to me. Very relieving and comforting to know that there are people in time past that have gone through similar, if not, the same conflict of the soul as I have encounter in my spiritual life.

    He felt that his sin had so wounded God, that he was unsure if he could ever be forgiven. In a way, I found this quite refreshing. It reminded me of Dietrich Bonhoeffer's warning against "cheap grace," where far too many people trivialize the high price Christ paid on the Cross. But John Bunyan acutely felt his sin. So once he finally received God's forgiveness, he was a changed man who wanted to tell the world about his Savior. Unfortunately for the time in which he lived, his message of salvation wasn't "sanctioned" by the Church of England, which landed him in jail for over a decade.

    The second-half of his autobiography is a play-by-play account of his interaction with the judges who tried and sentenced him.


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    In this account, we read the words of a man who thoroughly knew Scripture, and knew how to use it!