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John Bunyan's Awful Theology

From Bunyan's writings: "And the reason is this: because so long as people are ignorant of
the nature of the law, and of their being under it?that is, under
the curse and condemning power of it, by reason of their sin
against it?so long they will be careless, and negligent as to the
inquiring after the true knowledge of the Gospel. Before the
commandment came?that is, in the spirituality of it?Paul was
alive?that is, thought himself safe; which is clear, (Rom 7:9,10
compared with Phil 3:5-11, etc). But when that came, and was
indeed discovered unto him by the Spirit of the Lord, then Paul
dies (Rom 7) to all his former life (Phil 3) and that man which
before could content himself to live, though ignorant of the
Gospel, cries out now, ?I count all things but loss for the
excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord? (verse
8). Therefore, I say, so long they will be ignorant of the nature
of the Gospel, and how glorious a thing it is to be found within
the bounds of it; for we use to say,  that man that knoweth not
himself to be sick, that man will not look out for himself a
physician; and this Christ knew full well when He saith, ?The
whole have no need of the physician, but the sick?;1 that is,
none will in truth desire the physician unless they know they be
sick. That man also that hath got but a notion of the law?a
notion, that is, the knowledge of it in the head, so as to
discourse and talk of it?if he hath not felt the power of it, and
that effectually too, it is to be feared will at the best be but a
notionist in the Gospel; he will not have the experimental
knowledge of the same in his heart; nay, he will not seek nor
heartily desire after it; and all because, as I said before, he hath
not experience of the wounding, cutting, killing nature of the
I say, therefore, if thou wouldst know the authority and power
of the Gospel, labour first to know the power and authority of
the law; for I am verily persuaded that the want of this one
thing?namely, the knowledge of the law, is one cause why so
many are ignorant of the other. That man that doth know the
law doth not know in deed and in truth that he is a sinner; and
that man that doth not know he is a sinner, doth not know
savingly that there is a Saviour.
Again; that man that doth not know the nature of the law, that
man doth not know the nature of sin; and that man that knoweth
not the nature of sin, will not regard to know the nature of a
Saviour; this is proved (John 8:31-36). These people were
professors, and yet did not know the truth?the Gospel; and the
reason was, because they did not know themselves, and so not
the law. I would not have thee mistake me, Christian reader; I
do not say that the law of itself will lead any soul to Jesus
Christ; but the soul being killed by the law, through the
operation of its severity seizing on the soul, then the man, if he
be enlightened by the Spirit of Christ to see where remedy is to
be had, will not, through grace, be contented without the real
and saving knowledge through faith of Him."

Bunyan errs in that he confuses CONDEMNATION that Paul feels because law stirs up sin within him, to CONVICTION of the Spirit through the gospel. Condemnation and conviction are two different things. They are not the same, as Bunyan says. Indeed, the gospel cuts to the heart resulting in conviction. (Acts ch 2)  But this has nothing to do with what Paul is speaking about in Romans chapter 7.
 Paul in Romans 7 is miserable as a Jew who cannot keep the law knowing the law is righteous. (Christ sets the elect Jew who is heavy ladened with commands of the law free.) This Romans 7 conversation is not what is happening in the actual conversion of the unbeliever in Acts chapter 2. This process is different and saving and immediate, not a continual process of not being able to keep the law as described in Romans 7. Paul also wanted to teach the gospel, and that alone.

More Terrible Bunyan Theology: 
"That man also that hath got but a notion of the law?a
notion, that is, the knowledge of it in the head, so as to
discourse and talk of it?if he hath not felt the power of it, and
that effectually too, it is to be feared will at the best be but a
notionist in the Gospel; he will not have the experimental
knowledge of the same in his heart; nay, he will not seek nor
heartily desire after it; and all because, as I said before, he hath
not experience of the wounding, cutting, killing nature of the

Again the power of the gospel cuts the heart, as in Acts Ch 2. But Bunyan puts it on the law to do this work. False gospel everyone! Wake up you  many who allegedly support New Covenant Theology. But we know only grace awakens the dead. Only the gospel awakens the walking deceased.

From the Bunyan library we see a protracted false introspection and repentance, similar to Augustine, Calvin and Luther This is not the fast cutting of the heart by the sword of the Spirit, but rather the introspective mix of legalism and a carnal gospel, of free will introspection of a man who never knew the truth. This is without question one of the most upsurd and man centered statements ever put to paper that has absolutely nothing to do with how the gospel works in the heart of man:

 ...Thus, therefore, for several days, I was greatly assaulted and perplexed, and was often, when I have been walking, ready to sink where I went, with faintness in my mind; but one day, after I had been so many weeks oppressed and cast down therewith, as I was now quite giving up the ghost of all my hopes of ever attaining life, that sentence fell with weight upon my spirit, 'Look at the generations of old and see; did ever any trust in the Lord, and was confounded?'

At which I was greatly lightened and encouraged in my soul; for thus, at that very instant, it was expounded to me, Begin at the beginning of Genesis, and read to the end of the Revelations, and see if you can find that there was ever any that trusted in the Lord, and was confounded. So, coming home, I presently went to my Bible to see if I could find that saying, not doubting but to find it presently; for it was so fresh, and with such strength and comfort on my spirit, that I was as if it talked with me.

Well, I looked, but I found it not; only it abode upon me; then I did ask first this good man, and then another, if they knew where it was, but they knew no such place. At this I wondered that such a sentence should so suddenly, and with such comfort and strength, seize and abide upon my heart, and yet that none could find it, for I doubted not but it was in holy Scripture...

Now was I in great distress, thinking in very deed that this might well be so; wherefore I went up and down bemoaning my sad condition, counting myself far worse than a thousand fools, for standing off thus long, and spending so many years in sin as I had done; still crying out, Oh, that I had turned sooner! Oh, that I had turned seven years ago! It made me also angry with myself, to think that I should have no more wit, but to trifle away my time till my soul and heaven were lost."

[The puritans are responsible for the murderer of the King of England by Cromwell, replacing one theocracy with another. Murder is what the Puritans were about. And you know what? Owen assented, Bunyan assented and even Spurgeon assented the the Puritan evils. Jesus said His kingdom was not of this world. Sacral religion is false religion. Of course, the basis of Covenant Theology is the doctrine of conviction by law. But Acts chapter 2 is clear, conviction of the Jews after Peter spoke was by the gospel, not the law. If you are not convicted by the gospel, if you were "humbled" and "convicted" by the law you are not saved and you will most likely assent to the evils of the Covenant Theology. Theologies of law will always seek to control the apparatus of government, whether it be the administrative branch or the courts, by their version of the church].  


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