John Bunyan (1628-1688)
Bunyan is well known as the author of the famous work The Pilgrim’s Progress, but prior to his conversion he was, as he later referred to himself, ‘the chief of sinners.’ He was born and raised near Bedford, England, and had what he called an abandoned youth. He was rowdy, given to swearing, and violent fits of temper. When he came to the Lord it was through a great deal of inner turmoil, and he eventually fell in with a group of nonconformists, people who worshipped outside the rigidity of the State-mandated church. It was because of this that the tinker came to find himself in jail, far from his family, and during the long years of imprisonment he wrote The Pilgrim’s Progress, and the years of persecution greatly impacted others of his works. The man remains respected by posterity for his enduring faith throughout his trails and his books still speak to believers today.