Muller's 7 Motives

Jim Watt jmbetter at
Thu Apr 23 12:19:46 PDT 2009


*Jim & Marie Watt*

*Tel: 253.874.4265 -- Email: jmbetter at*



(From “George Muller of Bristol” by Dr. A.T. Pierson, Revell, 1899)

 Mr. Muller traveled over 200,000 miles when he was over 70, to make known
the secrets and principles of faith that God had taught him through the
Orphanage in Bristol, and 8 other endeavors of faith. He felt a divine
compulsion to share these truths near and far.

 *1. * *To **preach the gospel **in its simplicity*, especially to show how
salvation is based, not upon feelings or even upon faith, but upon the
finished work of Christ; that justification is ours the moment we believe,
and we are to accept and claim our place as accepted in the Beloved without
regard to our inward states of feeling or emotions.

 *2. To **lead believers to know their saved state**, *and to realize their
standing in Christ. Great numbers not only of disciples, but even preachers
and pastors are themselves destitute of any real peace and joy in the Lord,
and hence unable to lead others into joy and peace.

 *3. To **bring believers back to the Scriptures**, *to search the Word and
find its hidden treasures; to test everything by this divine touchstone and
hold fast only what will stand this test; to make it the daily subject
of *meditative
(vocal) *and prayerful examination in order to translate it into daily

 *4. To **promote among all true believers, brotherly love**; *to lead them
to make less of those non-essentials in which disciples differ, and to make
more of those great essential and foundation truths in which all true
believers are united; to help all who love and trust one Lord to rise above
narrow sectarian prejudices, and barriers to fellowship.

 *5. To **strengthen the faith of believers**, *encouraging a simpler trust,
and a more real and unwavering confidence in God, and particularly in the
sure answers to believing prayer, based upon His definite promises.

 *6. *T*o **promote separation from the world** *and deadness to it, and so
to increase heavenly-mindedness in children of God; at the same time warning
against fanatical extremes and extravagances, such as sinless perfection
while in the flesh.

 *7. And finally to **fix the hope of disciples on the blessed coming of our
Lord Jesus**; *and, in connection therewith, to instruct them as to the true
character and object of the present dispensation, and the relation of the
church to the world in this period of the outgathering of the Bride of

 *Summary**: *These seven objects may be briefly epitomized thus: Mr.
Muller’s aim was to lead sinners to believe on the Name of the Son of God,
and so to have* **eternal life**; *to help those who have thus believed, *to
**know** *that they have this life; to teach them so *to **build up**themselves
* on their most holy faith, by diligent searching into the word of God, and
praying in the Holy Spirit, so that this life shall be more and more a real
possession and a conscious possession; to promote among all disciples *the *
*unity of the Spirit **and the **love** *which is the bond of perfectness,
and to help them to exhibit that life before the world; to incite them to
cultivate *an **unworldly and spiritual type of character** *such as
conforms to the life of God in them; to lead them *to the **prayer of faith*
* *which is both the expression and the expansion of the life of faith; and
to direct their hope to the *final appearance of the Lord,** *so that they
should purify themselves even as He is pure, and occupy till He comes. Mr.
Muller was thus giving himself to the double work of evangelization and
edification, on a scale commensurate with his love for a dying world, as
opportunity afforded doing good unto all men, and especially to them who are
of the household of faith.

 It was laid upon his heart frequently to address his *brethren in the
ministry* of the Word and the care of souls. Everywhere, throughout the
world, he welcomed opportunities for interviews, whether with many or few,
upon whom he could impress his own deep convictions as to the vital secrets
of effective service in the pulpit and pastorate. Such meetings with
brethren in the ministry numbered hundreds and perhaps thousands in the
course of his long life, and as his testimony was essentially the same on
all occasions, a single utterance may be taken as the type of all. During
his American tours, he gave an hour's address which was reported and
published, and the substance of which may therefore be given.

 *­First* of all he laid great stress upon the *need of conversion*. Until a
man is both truly turned unto God and sure of this change in himself he is
not fitted to convert others. The ministry is not a human profession, but a
divine vocation. The true preacher is both a *herald* and a *witness*, and
hence must back up his message by his personal testimony from experience.

 But even conversion is not enough: there must be an *intimate knowledge of
the Lord Jesus. *One must know the Lord as coming near to himself, and know
the *joy and strength found in **hourly** access*. However it be done, and
at any cost, the minister of Christ must reach this close relationship. *It
is an absolute necessity to peace and power.*

 *Growth in happiness and love* was next made very prominent. It is
impossible to set limits to the experience of any believer who casts himself
*wholly* on God, surrenders himself *wholly* to God, and cherishes deep love
for His word and holy intimacy with Himself. The first business of every
morning should be to secure happiness in God,

 He who is to nourish others must carefully *feed his own soul*. *Daily
reading and study of the Scriptures*, *with much prayer*, *especially in the
morning hours*, was strenuously urged. Quietness before God should be
habitually cultivated, calming the mind and freeing it from pre-occupation.
Continuous reading of the Word, in course, will throw light upon the general
teaching of the Word, and reveal God's thoughts in their variety and
connection, and go far to correct erroneous views.

 *Holiness* must be the supreme aim: prompt obedience to all known truth, a
single eye in serving God, and zeal for His glory. Many a life has been more
or less a failure because habits of heart well pleasing to God have been
neglected. Nothing is more the crowning grace than the unconscious grace of
*humility*. All praise of man robs God of His own honor. Let us therefore be
humble and turn all eyes unto God.

 The *message* must be gotten from God, if it is to be with power. “Ask God
for it,” said Mr. Muller, “and be not satisfied unto the heart is at rest.
When the text is obtained ask further guidance *in meditating upon it*, and
keep in constant communion so as to get God's mind in the matter and His
help in delivery. Then, after the work is done, pray *much* for blessing, as
well as in advance.” He then told some startling facts as to seed sown many
years before, but even now yielding fruit in answer to prayer.

 He laid also sp[ecial emphasis upon *expounding the Scripture*. He laid
also special emphasis upon expounding the Scripture. The word of God is the
staple of all preaching; Christ and nothing else the center of all true
ministry of the Word. Whoever faithfully and constantly preaches Christ will
find God's word not returning to him void. Preach simply. Luther's rule was
to speak so that an ignorant maid-servant could understand; if she does, the
learned professor certainly will; but it does not hold true that the simple
understand all that the wise do.

 Mr. Muller seldom addressed his brethren in the ministry without giving
more or less counsel as to *the conduct of church life*, giving plain
witness against such hindrances as unconverted singers and choirs, secular
methods of raising money, pew-rents and caste distinctions in the house of
prayer, etc., and urging such helps as inquirers' meetings, pastoral visits,
and, above all else, *believing prayer*. *He urged definite praying and
importunate praying*, and remarked that Satan will not mind how we labor in
prayer for a few days, weeks, or even months, if he can at last discourage
us so that we cease praying, as though it were of no use.

 As to prayers for past seed-sowing, he told the writer of this memoir how
in all supplication to God he looked not only forward but *backward*. He was
accustomed to ask that the Lord would be pleased to bless seed long since
sown and yet apparently unfruitful; and he said that, in answer to these
prayers, he had up to that day evidence of God's loving remembrance of his
work of faith and labor of love in years long gone by. He was permitted to
know that messages delivered for God, tracts scattered, and other means of
service had, after five, ten, twenty, and even sixty years, at last brought
forth a harvest Hence his urgency in advising fellow laborers to *pray
unceasingly* that God would work mightily in the hearts of those who had
once been under their care, bringing to their remembrance the truth which
had been set before them.

 The *humility* Mr. Muller enjoined *he practiced.* He was ever only the *
servant* of the Lord. Mr. Spurgeon, in one of his sermons, describes the
startling effect on London Bridge when he saw one lamp after another lit up
with flame, though in the darkness he could not see the lamp-lighter; and
George Muller set many a light burning when he was himself content to be
unseen, unnoticed, and unknown. He *honestly* sought not his own glory but
had the meek and quiet spirit so becoming a minister of Jesus Christ.

 This man - from his seventieth to his eight-seventh year - when most men
are withdrawing from all activities, had traveled in forty-two countries and
over two hundred thousand miles, a distance equivalent to nearly eight
journeys round the globe! He estimated that during these seventeen years he
had addressed over three million people; and from all that can be gathered
from the records of these tours, we estimate that he must have spoken,
outside of Bristol, between five thousand and six thousand times. What sort
of teaching and testimony occupied these tours, those who have known the
preacher and teacher need not be told. While at Berlin in 1891, he gave an
address that serves as an example of the vital truths which he was
accustomed to press on the attention of *fellow disciples*. We give a brief

 He first urged that believers should *never, even under the greatest
difficulties, be discouraged*, and gave for his position sound scriptural
reasons. Then he pointed out to them that *the chief business of every day
is first of all to seek to be truly at rest and happy in God.* Then he
showed how, from the word of God, *all saved believes may know their true
standing in Christ*, and how in circumstances of particular perplexity *they
might ascertain the will of God*. He then urged disciples *to seek with
intense earnestness* to become acquainted with God Himself as revealed in
the Holy Scriptures, and carefully to form and maintain godly habits *of
systematic Bible study* and *prayer*, *holy living* and *consecrated giving*.
He taught that *God alone* is the one all-satisfying portion of the soul,
and that we must determine to possess and enjoy Him as such. He closed by
emphasizing it as the *one, single, all-absorbing, daily aim* to glorify God
*in a complete surrender to His will and service.*

 *NOTE*: George Muller was introduced to me in 1944 by some unremembered
person who gave to me as a new believer, his book “Answers to Prayer.” I
memorized the 6 points of the Preface How to Ascertain the Will of God, and
the 5 points of Appendix A, How to Prevail in Prayer. Later I purchased his
biography by Dr. A. T. Pierson, by Revell publishers, 1899, from which
appear the quotes from above. I count him as one of the 4 most effective
mentors in my life out of 144. I am currently rereading this biography each
month, and seeking by God's grace to walk in the same steps of George
Muller. Will you join me? - Jim Watt

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