The Keswick Conferences, which began in Keswick England in 1875 were referred to as a spiritual clinic for Christians. Some of the great Christian leaders of the day came there to go through the five day process that lead them into a deeper understanding of the lost condition that even they as good Christians were in. The second day of the conference emphasized the Cross as the solution to the deep root of sin and led them over the next two days into repentance and plans for restitution. The last day was a call to a deeper commitment to serve others.
These five days became a pattern for sharing with others when Buchman got hold of them and began to train his Oxford Group teams.
When Oxford Group Member, Ebby Thatcher found Bill Wilson drinking himself to death in his Clinton Street home in Brooklyn NY in 1933, he told Bill how he had quit drinking using 5 principles he had learned from the Oxford Group. He told Bill:
1. You get honest with yourself and admit that you have a problem.
2. You talk it over with someone else.
3. You make up for the harm you have done.
4. You share your change with others.
5. A you surrender you life to God. (Ebby shared this last because he knew that Bill was a confirmed agnostic.)
Bill took these five steps and turned them into twelve steps.
We used a modified version of the steps as our way of helping our member share clearly the steps to take in coming to the Cross and getting rid of self.
Simple but not easy: a price had to be paid. It meant
destruction of self-centeredness. AA Text pg 14
Here are the steps that we use in the Church of Brotherly Love:
1. We admitted that we were powerless over sin and self.
2. We came to believe that there was no way out of this bondage. We could not think or act our way to the truth. We needed a savior. We accepted the idea that in order to save our lives we had to loose our lives.
3. We saw the completed work of Calvary as the door to a new Creation. We took the position that we had died with Christ on the Cross. We entered into His decision for us. In dying on the Cross with Him we entered into His death and resurrection. We were reborn.
4. We asked God to show us all of our sins.
5. We admitted that we were wicked and evil and that even our best behavior and attitudes, did not measure up to God’s standards for righteousness.
6. We came to understand that Jesus has already taken our our sinner to the Cross and nailed him there.
7. We gave all our sins to Jesus and confessed that Jesus has already nailed them to the cross. All our sins now belong to Him. We are without excuse if we continue to struggle with sin. We now base our faith in the completed work of the Cross.
8. We took our list of wrongs done which we had made in our fourth step, and asked God for guidance as we set out to make right the harm we had done.
9. We admitted to those whom we had harmed, that we were wrong. We also confessed, where it was honest to do so, that we were ashamed of ourselves; and we admitted, when we could honestly do so, that we had learned our lesson. We asked for forgiveness and promised to make whatever restitution we mutually agreed was necessary.
10.We continued to confess our sins daily and to take them to the Cross, the only place where we had been set free. We ceased struggling with sin. We stood in faith on the completed work of Christ. We saw that since Jesus had purchased our sin on Calvary, our biggest sin now, was not accepting that all our sin now belongs to Him.
11. We asked God to tell us what to do and give us the power to do the things He told us. We were now His bond servants — slaves to righteousness.
12. When we learned to stand in our new position, and as we learned through daily practice to walk in the finished work of the Cross, we began to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit and not to follow our own thinking. We gave our lives wholly over to carrying the message of how we had been changed, as God guided us, to a lost and dying world. We became ‘World Changers.’ It could be said of us:
Steps To Living The Crucified Life
The Church of
Rev 3:7 And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; ….8 I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name. KJV