“It may be the most popular book ever written in English. It was a favorite of Charles Spurgeon’s, who read it at least once-a-year, and said before he died that he had probably read it more than a hundred times.
Spurgeon wasn’t the only important admirer of Bunyan. John Owen, probably the most prominent and respected academic leader of Bunyan’s own era, once went to hear Bunyan preach. Charles II, hearing of it, asked the learned doctor of divinity why someone as thoroughly educated as he would want to hear a mere tinker preach. Owen replied, “May it please your Majesty, if I could possess the tinker’s abilities to grip men’s hearts, I would gladly give in exchange all my learning.”
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I want to mention today a man who both John Owen and Charles Spurgeon held in high regard. Most know of John Bunyan as a writer, but he was also one of the most famous preachers of his era. Here is what one of the Pyromaniacs said of Bunyan, his preaching, and and his book, Pilgrim’s Progress: