Bill Wilson's 1943 Affirmation of His Born Again
His Inscription “Yours in Christ”
(lightly edited by Ken B.,
© 2014-2016 Anonymous. All rights reserved
Bill Wilson said in his
For sure, I'd been born again.
[Bill W., My First 40 Years
City, Minn.: Hazelden, 2000), 147.
After Ebby's visit to Bill prior to
Bill's decision for Christ at Calvary Mission, Bill Wilson wrote of Ebby:
The man was transformed; there was no denying he had
[“Bill Wilson's Original
Manuscript,” see lines 935-942, an unpublished manuscript located at Bill and
Lois Wilson's home called “Stepping Stones” in New York. You may see what is
purported to be a copy of this document here: http://www.aamo.info/bb/billstory/index.htm
(accessed 12/27/16). For more on this, see, for example: Dick B., The
Conversion of Bill W., xv,
After Bill Wilson made his own
decision for Christ at the rail at Calvary Mission in New York about December
7, 1934, he told his wife Lois about his experience that evening. Speaking of
Bill's experience at Calvary Mission in a speech she gave in Texas, Lois stated:
And he [Bill W.] went up, and really, in very great
sincerity, did hand over his life to Christ.
[“Lois Remembers: Searcy, Ebby,
Bill & Early Days.” Recorded in Dallas, Texas, June 29, 1973, Moore, OK:
Sooner Cassette, Side 1.
For more on this, see, for example:
Dick B. The Conversion of Bill W.,
Lois Wilson wrote in her
Although my joy and faith in his rebirth continued, I
missed his companionship.
[(L.B.W.), Lois Remembers: Memoirs
of the Co-founder of Al-Anon and Wife of the Co-Founder of Alcoholics Anonymous
(New York: Al-Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc., 1979), 98.
For more on this, see, for example:
Dick B., The Conversion of Bill W.,
Even author Mel B., the man who
dubs himself a casual historian, concluded:
His [Bill W.'s] was clearly a kind of “born again”
experience, . . .
[Mel B., New Wine: The Spiritual
Roots of the Twelve Step Miracle
(Center City, Minn.: Hazelden, 1991),
In John 3:7 (KJV), Jesus said to
Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews:
Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
In 1 Peter 1:23 (KJV), the Apostle
Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of
incorruptible by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever.
In January 13, 1943, Bill Wilson
signed his full name “Bill Wilson” in an inscription in a first edition Big
Book he gave to his friend, Dr. Jesse M. Bader. A photo of the inscription was
sent to me (Dick B.) by Ken R. I have it in my archives and have shown it at
A.A. History conferences. You may see a picture of the page in Alcoholics
on which Bill Wilson wrote the inscription including “Yours in
Christ” to Dr. Bader, as published by PBA Galleries in conjunction with the
auction of this book [Sale 389: Rare Books & Manuscripts (#389) 09/25/2008
1:00 PM PDT], here:
Ken R. also posted the following
message on the web:
“I just purchased a First Edition, Third printing Big Book inscribed on the
front free endpaper,
“To my friend Dr. Jesse M. Bader,
Christ, Bill Wilson, 1/13/43.”
Jesse Moren Bader (1886-1963) was a noted evangelist, ecumenist and global
founded the global, ecumenical, World Communion Sunday which was launched on
October 6, 1940 and continues on the first Sunday in October each year.
This is the first time I've ever seen Bill W. inscribe anything “Yours in
Christ” and it's also notable that he signed his full name. He apparently
stopped signing his full last name about the time the Traditions were coming
And here is the detailed
information PBA Galleries provided about this particular copy of the first
edition of Alcoholics Anonymous
in conjunction with the auction:
PBA Galleries (Auctioneers & Appraisers)
Sale 389: Rare Books & Manuscripts (#389)
09/25/2008 1:00 PM PDT CLOSED!
Alcoholics Anonymous: The Story of How More Than Six
Thousand Men and Women Have Recovered from Alcoholism
Lot closed - Sale Price: $13,200
William (Bill W.)]
, 400 pp. 9x6, original blue cloth, spine lettered in gilt, original jacket.
First Edition, Third printing. Presentation copy inscribed on the front free
endpaper, "To my friend Dr. Jesse M. Bader, Yours in Christ, Bill Wilson,
1/13/43." Jesse Moren Bader (1886-1963) was a noted evangelist, ecumenist
and global leader. He founded the global, ecumenical, World Communion Sunday
which was launched on October 6, 1940 and continues on the first Sunday in
October each year. There were 5000 copies of this third printing published in
Jacket chipped and worn, lacking top 2½" of spine
strip and some of adjacent front panel, repairs on verso; volume spine head
bumped, shelf wear, darkening along front endpaper gutter, else very good in
Shortened link: http://mcaf.ee/ql4yt
[accessed 1/2/2015. If the auction page doesn’t immediately come into view, copy-and-paste
this link into your browser’s address bar and then hit “Enter”.]
Examples of the Phrase "in Christ" in the King James Version of the
In 2 Corinthians 5:17 (KJV), the
Apostle Paul wrote:
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new
: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
In Romans 8:1 (KJV), the Apostle
therefore no condemnation to them
which are in Christ Jesus,
who walk not after the flesh, but after the
Spirit. [emphasis added]
Here are a couple of other examples
of this phrase:
2 Corinthians 2:17 (KJV): “. . . in the sight of God speak
we in Christ
” [emphasis added]
1 Peter 5:14 (KJV): “Greet ye
one another with a
kiss of charity. Peace be with you all that are in Christ Jesus.
Amen” [emphasis added]
Examples of Verses in the King James Version
Which the Phrase “In Christ” Occurs
Rom 16:7: Salute Andronicus and
Junia, my kinsmen, and my fellowprisoners, who are of note among the apostles,
who also were in Christ before me.
1 Cor 1:2: Unto the church of God
which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be
saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our
Lord, both theirs and ours:
1 Cor 1:30: But of him are ye in
Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and
sanctification, and redemption:
1 Cor 3:1: And I, brethren,
could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto
babes in Christ.
2 Cor 5:17: Therefore if any man be
in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things
are become new.
Gal 1:22: And was unknown by face
unto the churches of Judaea which were in Christ:
Eph 1:1: Paul, an apostle of Jesus
Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the
faithful in Christ Jesus:
Phil 1:1: Paul and Timotheus, the
servants of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at
Philippi, with the bishops and deacons:
Phil 4:21: Salute every saint in
Christ Jesus. The brethren which are with me greet you.
Col 1:2: To the saints and faithful
brethren in Christ which are at Colosse: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God
our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Thess 2:14: For ye, brethren,
became followers of the churches of God which in Judaea are in Christ Jesus:
for ye also have suffered like things of your own countrymen, even as they have
of the Jews:
1 Thess 4:16: For the Lord himself
shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and
with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
1 Pet 5:14: Greet ye one another with a kiss of charity.
Peace be with you all that are in Christ Jesus. Amen.