Archive for May 14, 2012

May 14

Help for the Pilgrimage of the Christian Life

2012 | by Trent Hunter | Category: Recommended Resources,Sermon Follow-Up

In Sunday’s sermon, “A Better Home,” Ryan preached from Psalm 84, a psalm with the familiar and lofty line, “A day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere” (84:10). While we certainly believe this to be true, we recognize that we don’t always live like it. We believe it, but we know we should believe it more.

That’s why, as Ryan said, the Christian life is a pilgrimage. We are on our way to the perfect presence of God.

On this pilgrimage, the author of Hebrews encourages us with the example of Old Testament saints who looked forward to their heavenly home in Hebrews 11:13-16:

These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. For people who speak thus make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. If they had been thinking of that land from which they had gone out, they would have had opportunity to return. But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.

Following in the example of the faithful from the Old Testament means following them, ultimately, in the direction of their hope. This better and heavenly country, of course, is nothing less than the New Heavens and New Earth. And what’s so much better about it? There, we will hear the words, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man” (Revelation 21:3).

Another help for the pilgrimage comes to us from the English Puritan, John Bunyan. His classic, Pilgrim’s Progress, unfolds the nature of the Christian life by means of a powerful and imaginative story, making sense of the various struggles and temptations faced by every Christian. You can purchase a copy of Pilgrim’s Progress at Amazon here.

For children nine years old and up, Oliver Hunkin’s adaptation, Dangerous Journey: The Story of Pilgrim’s Progress, is an excellent resource.

Below is a two hour version of Hunkin’s adaptation being read with illustrations.

[RSS and email readers, click here to view this video]

HT: Justin Taylor