Along the way, Christian passes by three men, Simple, Sloth, and Presumption, sleeping with shackled ankles. Fearing for their safety, he wakes them, offers to remove their fetters, and invites them to accompany him on his pilgrimage but they decline and go back to sleep.

While troubled with wonder of why these men would refuse his help, Christian sees two men climbing over the wall then approaching him, Formalist and Hypocrisy. They reveal that they are also on a journey to the Celestial City but decided on taking a shortcut. He reminds them that they will be denied admittance for their actions but they laugh at him. However, Christian feels confident with the mark on his forehead, the roll (scroll), and the "coat that {the Lord} gave me freely in the day that he stripped {him} of my rags".

After ignoring Christian's questions and laughing at him, Formalist and Hypocrisy continue their journey.

from The Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan:

(Simple, Sloth, and Presumption)
BUNYAN. I saw then in my dream, that he went on thus, even until he came at a bottom, where he saw, a little out of the way, three men fast asleep, with fetters upon their heels. The name of the one was Simple, another Sloth, and the third Presumption.

Christian then seeing them lie in this case went to them, if peradventure he might awake them, and cried, "You are like them that sleep on the top of a mast, for the Dead Sea is under you-- a gulf that hath no bottom. Prov. 23:34 Awake, therefore, and come away; be willing also, and I will help you off with your irons. He also told them, If he that "goeth about like a roaring lion" comes by, you will certainly become a prey to his teeth." 1 Pet. 5:8 (There is no persuasion will do, if God openeth not the eyes.) With that they looked upon him, and began to reply in this sort: Simple said, "I see no danger"; Sloth said, "Yet a little more sleep"; and Presumption said, "Every fat must stand upon its own bottom; what is the answer else that I should give thee?" And so they lay down to sleep again, and Christian went on his way.

Yet was he troubled to think that men in that danger should so little esteem the kindness of him that so freely offered to help them, both by awakening of them, counselling of them, and proffering to help them off with their irons. And as he was troubled thereabout, he espied two men come tumbling over the wall on the left hand of the narrow way; and they made up apace to him. The name of the one was Formalist, and the name of the other Hypocrisy. So, as I said, they drew up unto him, who thus entered with them into discourse.

(Christian talked with them)

CHRISTIAN. Gentlemen, whence came you, and whither go you?

FORMALIST and HYPOCRISY. We were born in the land of Vain-glory, and are going for praise to Mount Zion.

CHR. Why came you not in at the gate which standeth at the beginning of the way? Know you not that it is written, that he that cometh not in by the door, "but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber?" John 10:1

FORM. and HYP. They said, That to go to the gate for entrance was, by all their countrymen, counted too far about; and that, therefore, their usual way was to make a short cut of it, and to climb over the wall, as they had done.

CHR. But will it not be counted a trespass against the Lord of the city whither we are bound, thus to violate his revealed will?

(They that come into the way, but not by the door, think that they can say something in vindication of their own practice)

FORM. and HYP. They told him, that, as for that, he needed not to trouble his head thereabout; for what they did they had custom for; and could produce, if need were, testimony that would witness it for more than a thousand years.

CHR. But, said Christian, will your practice stand a trial at law?

FORM. and HYP. They told him, That custom, it being of so long a standing as above a thousand years, would, doubtless, now be admitted as a thing legal by any impartial judge; and besides, said they, if we get into the way, what's matter which way we get in? if we are in, we are in; thou art but in the way, who, as we perceive, came in at the gate; and we are also in the way, that came tumbling over the wall; wherein, now, is thy condition better than ours?

CHR. I walk by the rule of my Master; you walk by the rude working of your fancies. You are counted thieves already, by the Lord of the way; therefore, I doubt you will not be found true men at the end of the way. You come in by yourselves, without his direction; and shall go out by yourselves, without his mercy.

To this they made him but little answer; only they bid him look to himself. Then I saw that they went on every man in his way without much conference one with another, save that these two men told Christian, that as to laws and ordinances, they doubted not but they should as conscientiously do them as he; therefore, said they, we see not wherein thou differest from us but by the coat that is on thy back, which was, as we trow, given thee by some of thy neighbours, to hide the shame of thy nakedness.

(Christian has got his Lord's coat on his back, and is comforted therewith; he is comforted, also, with his mark and his roll)

CHR. By laws and ordinances you will not be saved, since you came not in by the door. Gal. 2:16 And as for this coat that is on my back, it was given me by the Lord of the place whither I go; and that, as you say, to cover my nakedness with. And I take it as a token of his kindness to me; for I had nothing but rags before. And besides, thus I comfort myself as I go: Surely, think I, when I come to the gate of the city, the Lord thereof will know me for good since I have this coat on my back--a coat that he gave me freely in the day that he stripped me of my rags. I have, moreover, a mark in my forehead, of which, perhaps, you have taken no notice, which one of my Lord's most intimate associates fixed there in the day that my burden fell off my shoulders. I will tell you, moreover, that I had then given me a roll, sealed, to comfort me by reading as I go on the way; I was also bid to give it in at the Celestial Gate, in token of my certain going in after it; all which things, I doubt, you want, and want them because you came not in at the gate.

(Christian has a talk with himself)
To these things they gave him no answer; only they looked upon each other, and laughed. Then, I saw that they went on all, save that Christian kept before, who had no more talk but with himself, and that sometimes sighingly, and sometimes comfortably; also he would be often reading in the roll that one of the Shining Ones gave him, by which he was refreshed.

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