The Heavenly Footman:
A Puritanís View of How to get to Heaven
by John Bunyan
ďDo you not know that
those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it. And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown. Therefore I run thus:
not with uncertainty.
Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air.
But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.Ē
(1 Corinthians 9:24-27)
Nine Directions how to Run
1. Obedience. Be sure you take the right path Ė only the one that leads to heaven.
2. Wisdom. Know your goal well: study Christ, your Shepherd (His directions and destination)
3. Single-mindedness. Strip yourself of all hindrances -- covetousness, pride, lust, gluttony, and whatever else your flesh may crave.
4. Caution. Beware of by-paths; those crooked paths that distract and lead out of the way. Look straight ahead; donít turn to the right or left. Donít explore every opinion or mystical secret that detracts from the goal.
5. Humility. Donít look too high and forget to watch the path. Presumption makes you stumble, so remember your weakness and cling to the Shepherd.
6. Resolution or determination. Donít answer everyone that calls after you as you run. Godís runner will not win the price if he stops to answer every question.
7. Steadfast hope. Donít be weakened or distracted by the many discouragementís or tests along the way. (If Satan canít win by flattery, he will try discouragement) ďWe must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.
8. Perseverance. Donít be offended by the cross. ďAll that will live godly in Christ will suffer persecution.Ē Know the cross by:
∑ justification - His righteous life for my unholy life
∑ mortification - reckon myself dead to sin
∑ perseverance - havenít yet resisted to the point of shedding blood
∑ communion with God and poor saints
10. Pray. Beg God to:
∑ Enlighten your understanding
∑ Enflame your will