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Wesley’s High Standard for Methodists

John Wesley lived a disciplined life and was not afraid to hold other Methodists to a similar standard. His journal gives the impression that he spent as much time throwing people out of Methodist societies as he did persuading them to come in.

During one early visit to Bristol, he purged almost 20 percent of the society for sins including drunkenness, dishonest business practices, gossip, theft, arguing in public, and cheating on taxes.

Later, when he found a whole group of Methodists whose behavior was substandard, he "told them in plain terms that they were the most ignorant, self-conceited, self-willed, fickle, intractable, disorderly, disjointed society that I knew in three kingdoms." Evidently the group listened well, for Wesley reported that "many were profited" and not one was offended.

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