This past Sunday, November 28th, was John Bunyan’s birthday. I was too busy to post this on Sunday, but here it is. I am fortunate to have a copy of John Bunayn’s ‘Come and Welcome’ printed in 1815. The leather is in fairly good condition although it is a bit dry. The pages are all in tacked – some at the cover ends are breaking apart as you might expect. Overall it has weathered the past two centuries quite well.
John Bunyan was a particular Baptist in England. As a staunch 5 point Calvinist he was nonetheless eager to spread the Gospel of Christ as far and wide as he could. He is in a group of old Reformed Puritans referred to as “free-offer Calvinists.” I remember reading several times as a boy his book, Pilgrim’s Progress. That book and my Bible were both very key in helping form my trust in God and in seeing that the Gospel of Christ is for all the Christian’s life not just the beginning of it. I thank the Lord for John Bunyan.
Notice also the size of ‘Come and Welcome.’ Books at the time were going through a process of change much like publishing is now with books going digital. The publishers of books were by the 18th century confronted with the need to make books more accessible to the common man. This edition of ‘Come and Welcome’ falls on the side of accessible. It is small, thus easy to carry, less costly to print, bind and ship. If it costs less, then more people will buy it and then more people will benefit from it.