In Book one of Pilgrim's Progress there are three characters: Pliable, Worldly Wiseman, and Obstinate.Explain how each of these characters did not follow God and Christianity. How did they try...

 In Book one of Pilgrim's Progress there are three characters: Pliable, Worldly Wiseman, and Obstinate.

Explain how each of these characters did not follow God and Christianity. How did they try to convince Christian to be opposed to God?

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lynnebh | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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As Christian sets off on his pilgrimage in Book I, two of his neighbors, named Obstinate and Pliable, run out and try to persuade him to come back and not go on the journey to seek salvation. The word "obstinate" means stubborn, and you can see how Obstinate forcefully tries to convince Christian to return.

"Tush! Away with your book! Will you come back with us or not?"

"Pliable" means "easily changed or easily bent". At first, Pliable agrees to accompany Christian, thinking it will be some sort of pleasant outing. As they go along, however, when he sees there is going to be some painful growth involved, he gets angry at Christian and leaves.

"...so away he went, and Christian saw him no more."

Christian then goes on his way to a town called Carnal Policy. There he meets Mr. Worldly Wiseman. Worldly tries to convince Christian using "worldly" knowledge, not heavenly knowledge, that he should go back, not pay attention to anything he has read in "the book", and resume his life. He tries to convince Christian that the way he is pursuing, the way of salvation, is dangerous:

"...thou art like to meet with, in the way which thou goest, wearisomeness, painfulness, hunger, perils, nakedness, sword, lions, dragons, darkness, and, in a word, death, and what not. These things are certainly true, having been confirmed by many testimonies."

All three of these characters try to convince Christian not to follow the way of God, not to go through the narrow door. The Bible says in Matthew 19:24:

"Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

Also, Matthew 7:14 says:

"For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few."

The gate that Christian is seeking to go through will lead to redemption, even though the way will be narrow and difficult. Pliable, Obstinate and Worldly Wiseman will not go through this narrow gate and they are trying to convince Christian not to go through as well.

Read the text at the link below and see the analysis right here on enotes.

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