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Excerpts from "George Muller:
Man of Faith and Miracles"

[These excerpts are taken from the above named book written by Basil Miller, available online at: http://www.amazon.com or http://www.Christianbooks.com . The very principles of effective prayer explained by Dr. Charles Stanley quoting Jesus in Matthew 7:7--"Ask, seek, knock" are dynamically applied by George Muller in this text. This is a complementary text to Dr. Stanley's transcript on "Learning To Pray The Bible Way." Every pastor should be aware of the principles here, and more importantly, applying them. The local congregation, as evidenced by the Brooklyn Tabernacle (pastored by Jim Cymbala), can achieve great things, if those things are obtained by prevailing prayer. Here's how it was done by one man partnering with God through prayer. Read this, and you'll become aware that anything is possible when God is involved. Be sure to buy this prayer-inspiring book, for both you and your congregation.]

In Germany, his beginnings

"Though confirmed in the church at the age of 14, George Muller was raised without a real concept of God. By the time he was 16, he was in jail as a vagabond and thief.

In his early twenties he came in contact with a group of people who met regularly for prayer and Bible study. Through their witness he was brought to a turning point in his life and was born into the family of God. Daily Bible reading and prayer immediately became an important part of his Christian life and a cornerstone of his future orphanage ministry.

"...God was not long in supplying the temporal needs of this trusting student, for Tholuck shortly recommended him to a group of American professors who did not understand German, to teach them the language. "Thus did the Lord richly make up to me the little which I had relinquished for His sake," says Mr. Muller.

Though a divinity student, he had not yet preached. His first sermon was a severe trial, for he attempted to carry it through on his own strength. A school-master arranged for him to speak in the parish of an aged clergyman, and on August 27, 1826, he went out and spoke at the morning service, having written and memorized his message. The delivery brought no unusual blessing from the Lord. In the afternoon there was another service at which he could speak more freely than in the morning.

"It came to my mind to read the fifth chapter of Matthew, and to make such remarks as I was able...Immediately upon beginning to expound 'Blessed are the poor in spirit,' I felt myself greatly assisted; and whereas in the morning my sermon had not been simple enough for the people to understand it. I now was listened to with the greatest attention...My own peace and joy were great." This endeavor launched him on a preaching career, which henceforth was to be a simple exposition of the Scriptures. From this course he never deviated throughout his many years as a public servant of the Master. [Simple expository preaching of the Word of God, especially connective expository preaching, is the most powerful form of preaching there is.]

As a divinity student he fell into the common error of reading books about the Bible but not reading the Bible itself. "I practically preferred for the first four years of my divine life the works of uninspired men," he confesses. "The consequence was that I remained a babe, both in knowledge and grace."

Since the ministers were themselves unenlightened spiritually there was little in the sermons to feed his soul. Though he regularly went to church, when not preaching, yet he scarcely ever heard the truth, he affirms, "for there was no enlightened clergyman in the town." He often walked ten to fifteen miles to hear a godly minister expound the Word...

He soon took another significant step, which brought him into contact with an orphanage work, later to be the model of his own orphanages. For two months he lived in the free lodgings furnished for divinity students in the famous Orphan Houses built by A.H. Franke. More than a hundred years earlier Franke had been led to establish an orphanage in entire dependence upon God. Though Franke had died in 1727, the work continued through faith. This became an inspiration to Muller and often he records how much he was indebted to the example of trust and prayer which Franke exhibited...

With the outreaching of his soul, the young minister was seeking the field for his life's investment. While there was a ringing challenge to be a missionary, he was never permitted to serve in this capacity, since God had other plans for his life...

A divine miracle with far-reaching results was about to occur in Muller's experience from which directly sprang his life's work. Oftentimes God indirectly leads one to the fields of his service, which was to be the case with George. God wanted this youth in England where his sphere of influence was to be centered.

When Thulock learned that this young student was interested in the Jews, he at once wrote to the London Society suggesting Muller's name as a candidate. In March 1828, the Society answered asking the candidate a number of questions, and on June 13 a letter came saying that they would take George as a missionary student for six months on probation.

There was one proviso, meaningful and life determining. He must come to London...for God wanted George Muller's fame to spread throughout the world from this English-speaking nation. Germany had her Franke, and England must also have her Muller, apostle of faith.

There was a formidable obstacle. Every Prussian man must serve three years in the army...

While in Leipsic with an American professor for whom he was serving as tutor in German, between acts at the opera George took some iced refreshments which caused him to become sick. This resulted in a broken blood vessel in his stomach. Being advised by friends to go to Berlin, he found an open door for preaching in wards in the poorhouse and in the prisons.

On February 3, 1829, he was re-examined for the army, and because of his stomach trouble was declared physically unfit for service, and hence exempted. Immediately he received his passport and set sail for London where he arrived on March 19...

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