But The Pilgrim’s Progress teaches us how to brawl with Apollyon.
This article was adapted from episode two of The Way to Glory.
How do you think about the devil? Or, perhaps, do you think about him at all?
As much as we attempt to explain away or ignore Satan, he’s a person. And he’s seeking to destroy those who identify with Christ.
In ThePilgrim’s Progress, John Bunyan depicts the unyielding attacks Satan launches on those who follow Jesus through the character of Apollyon. Derek Thomas, senior minister of First Presbyterian Church in Columbia, S.C., and professor of systematic and practical theology at Reformed Theological Seminary in Atlanta, joined us to talk about Apollyon on the page and Satan in our everyday lives.
Christian encounters Apollyon shortly after leaving the hospitable mistresses of the Palace Beautiful who fed and armed him for his journey. He travels down into the Valley of Humiliation, where Apollyon, a monster described as “hideous to behold,” awaits.
He was clothed with scales like a fish (and they are his pride); he had wings like a dragon, feet like a bear, and out of his belly came fire and smoke; and his mouth was as the mouth of a lion.
Apollyon, a biblical name for Satan that is translated “Destroyer,” advances on Christian with possessive indignation.
Apollyon: By this I perceive thou art one of my subjects, for all that country is mine, and I am the prince and god of it. How is it then that thou hast run away from thy King? Were it not that I hope thou mayest do me more service, I would strike thee now at one blow to the ground. …
Source: Christianity Today Most Read