In reading Pilgrim’s Progress, the hosts in the way-station took Christian to the Armory. The Christian soldier will be familiar with the armory, it is described in Ephesians 6:10-20. Here is the excerpt in Pilgrim’s Progress:
The next day they took him, and had him into the armory, where they showed him all manner of furniture which their Lord had provided for pilgrims, as sword, shield, helmet, breastplate, all-prayer, and shoes that would not wear out.
Hmmm, ‘shoes that would not wear out’. That reminded me of a verse I’d read in Deuteronomy-
I have led you forty years in the wilderness. Your clothes have not worn out on you, and your sandals have not worn off your feet. (Deuteronomy 29:5).
Now, aside from the practical matter of the necessity of a nomad tribe such as the Israelites were at the time needing to have appropriate footwear, and the LORD taking care of that seemingly small matter, the issue of the shoes that did not wear out did not come up again in my mind until I read it put just so in Pilgrim’s Progress. Because at that time, the shoes that do not wear out seemed to me to be a type, a pre-figuring from the Old Testament to the New.
Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication.
In the Bible Knowledge Commentary, Walvoord says,
This verse does not speak of the spreading of the gospel, for Christians are pictured in vv. 10–16 as standing, not advancing. Instead this refers to a believer’s stability or surefootedness from the gospel which gives him peace so he can stand in the battle.
Picture yourself standing, sure-footed, in Gospel shoes which will never wear out, prepared to stand in the day of battle. These shoes will not allow one to stumble! The LORD Himself is caring for these shoes upon which we stand.
Now I have no idea of the Deuteronomy sandals not wearing out has anything to to in type or foreshadowing of the Gospel shoes of peace in the New Testament Ephesians 6. But it is something to think about. The majestic plan of God in His wisdom includes grande and small details down to the n-th degree. He gave the wandering Jews shoes which did not wear out and He gave us in the Church a sure-footed shoe which will always carry the one who wears them. Forever.