Sunday, July 09, 2006

job description of methodist preacher

I recently began reading Frederick A. Norwood's book, The History of American Methodism. On page 40, he shares the first written job description of a Methodist preacher. Notice the combination of evangelical purpose with obedience to heirarchy. Wesley wrote,

You have nothing to do but to save souls. Therefore spend and be spent in this great work.... And remember! A Methodist Preacher is to mind every point, great and small, in the Methodist discipline!... Act in all things, not according to your own will, but as a son in the Gospel. As such, it is your part to employ your time in the manner which we direct.... Above all, if you labour with us in our Lord's vineyard, it is needful that you should do that part of the work which we advise, at those times and places which we judge most for his glory.

The above was stated in "The Twelve Rules of a Helper," and recorded in "Minutes of Several Conversations" (1789), in Works, VIII, 310.

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