The legacy of George Muller

Arthur T. Pierson wrote a wonderful biography about the life of the beloved brother George Müller, simply titled George Müller of Bristol.

The audio book is in the public domain and can be downloaded at LibriVox. I found it initially on Georgemuller.org.

At the end, I found myself very much missing George and wishing I could have spoken to him in person. I respected his earnestness and constancy in all things spiritual, as well as his desire to live in simplicity, holding a strong conscience toward properly handling the funds he received. Mostly, I saw in him a living example of the contentedness Paul spoke of when he said:

But godliness with contentment is great gain.

1 Timothy 6:6

And,

…I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.

Philippians 4:11

The goal of the book was, using Müller’s own narratives of the Lord’s dealings with his life, to establish a well-documented testimony of God’s continued hearing and answering of prayer. Pierson wrote it in such a way as to highlight the areas of Müller’s life which bear greatest witness to God’s responses to a simple man’s prayers, and kept it true to Müller’s own intent of inspiring faith in the God of the Bible as Savior and Provider in all aspects of life, large or small.

In the parable about Lazarus and the rich man, Abraham said, “If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead” (Luke 16:31). Of course the skeptic will never be persuaded as long as he remains blind, unbelieving, hardened. But for those with an open mind, this biography is encouraging to say the least. One does not need to agree with all of the subject’s methods, but the testimonies of Mr. Müller, his insistence upon being nothing special and not endowed with any unique gifts, and his persistence in prayer and trust–all are uplifting and galvanizing.

Of several meetings between the author and the subject, one in particular caught my attention. It shows a side less spoken of in discussions about Müller. In the meeting, Pierson was insisting upon a particular view of the scriptures and laying out his case point by point. At the end, Müller, after acknowledging hearing Pierson and noticing there was not a shred of real biblical evidence in his arguments, responded:

You will never get at the truth upon any matter of divine revelation unless you lay aside your prejudices and like a little child ask simply, “What is the testimony of Scripture?”

In that brief but important quote, he outlined exactly what is and has always been the problem with Scripture study: carrying into interpretation views received from others (denominations or individuals) or found by self and assumed as fact, without proper subjection to rigorous juxtaposition against the truth.

Remember that children were far more ready to receive Christ than adults were when Jesus walked among men. That readiness to receive should be taken into every study.

Have a listen to the audio book some time, I think you’ll enjoy it.

 

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