The “General Rules of the United Societies” were a central component of the early Methodist movement under John Wesley’s leadership. Examinations of the General Rules in contemporary literature tend to focus on their role in personal and organizational discipline for early Methodists and for the movement as a whole. Yet a close examination of the rules shows that they served a greater purpose: as the practical theological articulation of how Methodists could expect to experience sanctification in the context of their lives. This crucial aspect of the General Rules’ use can be seen by exploring Wesley’s understanding of the means of grace and how the rules were intended as a framework for the means of grace in Methodist discipleship.
Thompson, Andrew C.
"The Practical Theology of the General Rules,"
The Asbury Journal:
2, p. 6-27.
Available at: http://place.asburyseminary.edu/asburyjournal/vol68/iss2/3