What a testimony to how Bunyan knew the Word of God. May we be students of the Word like he was.
If Mr. Spurgeon were ever prevailed upon to fill up a page of the once-popular Confession Album, I am pretty sure that his answer to the query, “Who is your favorite author?” was, “John Bunyan.” He has spoken of him over and over again as “my great favorite,” and has left it on record that he had read The Pilgrim’s Progress at least one hundred times. The reason for his liking is not far to seek. They both loved “The Book of Books.” Urging the earnest study of the Scriptures, C. H. Spurgeon once said: “Oh, that you and I might get into the very heart of the Word of God, and get that Word into ourselves! As I have seen the silkworm eat into the leaf, and consume it, so ought we to do with the Word of the Lord—not crawl over its surface, but eat right into it till we have taken it into our inmost parts. It is idle merely to let the eye glance over the words, or to recollect the poetical expressions, or the historic facts; but it is blessed to eat into the very soul of the Bible until, at last, you come to talk in Scriptural language, and your very style is fashioned upon Scripture models, and, what is better still, your spirit is flavored with the words of the Lord. I would quote John Bunyan as an instance of what I mean. Read anything of his, and you will see that it is almost like reading the Bible itself. He had read it till his very soul was saturated with Scripture; and, though his writings are charmingly full of poetry, yet he cannot give us his Pilgrim’s Progress—that sweetest of all prose poems—without continually making us feel and say, ‘Why, this man is a living Bible!’ Prick him anywhere; his blood is Bibline, the very essence of the Bible flows from him. He cannot speak without quoting a text, for his very soul is full of the Word of God. I commend his example to you, beloved.”
C. H. Spurgeon, Pictures from Pilgrim’s Progress: A Commentary on Portions of John Bunyan's Immortal Allegory (Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software, 2009), 5–6.