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Friday, May 15, 2015

22 questions from the "Holy Club" of the Wesleys, John and Charles

John Wesley, with his brother, Charles, founded the Holy Club at Oxford University, which was the forerunner of the Methodist Church. (See here for more on the Holy Club.)

One feature of the group was the use of accountability questions. I have been unable to determine whether what follows is an actual list, or closely based on a list -- if it were, it would be public domain -- from the early days of the Holy Club, but here is a list of such questions:

These are 22 questions, probably quite similar to, or identical with, the questions that members of John Wesley’s “Holy Club” asked themselves every day in their private devotions, over 200 years ago.
1. Am I consciously or unconsciously creating the impression that I am better than I really am? In other words, am I a hypocrite?
2. Am I honest in all my acts and words, or do I exaggerate?
3. Do I confidentially pass on to another what was told to me in confidence?
4. Can I be trusted?
5. Am I a slave to dress, friends, work, or habits?
6. Am I self-conscious, self-pitying, or self-justifying?
7. Did the Bible live in me today?
8. Do I give it time to speak to me everyday?
9. Am I enjoying prayer?
10. When did I last speak to someone else about my faith?
11. Do I pray about the money I spend?
12. Do I get to bed on time and get up on time?
13. Do I disobey God in anything?
14. Do I insist upon doing something about which my conscience is uneasy?
15. Am I defeated in any part of my life?
16. Am I jealous, impure, critical, irritable, touchy, or distrustful?
17. How do I spend my spare time?
18. Am I proud?
19. Do I thank God that I am not as other people, especially as the Pharisees who despised the publican?
20. Do I fear, dislike, disown, criticize, hold resentment toward or disregard anyone? If so, what am I doing about it?
21. Do I grumble or complain constantly?
22. Is Christ real to me?

Thank you for reading. I heard of this list a couple of weeks ago, and have been using it since.


Weekend Fisher said...

So ... you're a Wesleyan, right? Do you think that list is useful? Healthy? What do you think of the focus/priorities there? (Speaking as a Lutheran, I expect I have a different take on that.)

Martin LaBar said...

It can be unhealthy to gaze at your own navel too much, even if we are looking for flaws in ourselves. That can be overdone. But the Bible indicates that we should "examine ourselves:"
Job 13:23, 1 Cor. 11:27-31, 2 Cor 13:5, and probably in other places.

I find it useful to remind myself of things where I don't think I'm living a Christ-like life as much as I ought to be.

I'm not sure that there is any significance to the order of questions.

Thanks for your comment.