and the Scriptures
by Arthur T. Pierson
One lesson, yet to be learned, was that the one fountain of all wisdom and strength is the Holy Scriptures. Many disciples practically prefer religious books to the Book of God. He had indeed found much of the reading with which too many professed believers occupy their minds to be but worthless chaff—such as French and German novels; but as yet he had not formed the habit of reading the Word of God daily and systematically as in later life, almost to the exclusion of other books.
In his ninety-second year, he said to the writer, that for every page of any other reading he was sure he read ten of the Bible. But, up to that November day in 1825 when he first met a praying band of disciples, he had never to his recollection read one chapter in the Book of books; and for the first four years of his new life he gave to the works of uninspired men practical preference over the Living Oracles.
After a true relish for the Scriptures had been created, he could not understand how he could ever have treated God’s Book with such neglect. It seemed obvious that God having condescended to become an Author, inspiring holy men to write the Scriptures, He would in them impart the most vital truths; His message would cover all matters which concern man’s welfare, and therefore, under the double impulse of duty and delight, we should instinctively and habitually turn to the Bible. Moreover, as he read and studied this Book of God, he felt himself admitted to more and more intimate acquaintance with the Author. During the last twenty years of his life he read it carefully through, four or five times annually, with a growing sense of his own rapid increase in the knowledge of God thereby.
How few, even among believers, appreciate the privilege of access to the great Author of the universe through His word ! Poor and rich, high and low, ignorant and learned, young and old, all alike are welcomed to the audience-chamber of the King of kings. The most intimate knowledge of God is possible on one condition—that we search His Holy Scriptures, prayerfully and habitually, and translate what we there find into obedience. Of him who thus meditates on God’s law day and night, who looks and continues looking into this perfect law of liberty, the promise is unique, and found in both Testaments: “Whatsoever he doeth shall prosper”; “that man shall be blessed in his deed.” (Compare Psalm 1;3, Joshua 1:8 and James 1:25.)
So soon as George Muller found this well-spring of delight and success, he drank habitually at this fountain of living waters. In later life he lamented that, owing to his early neglect of this source of divine wisdom and strength, he remained so long in spiritual infancy, with its ignorance and impotence. So long and so far as his growth in knowledge of God was thus arrested his growth in grace was likewise hindered. His close walk with God began at the point where he learned that such walk is always in the light of that inspired Word which is divinely declared to be to the obedient soul “a lamp unto the feet and a light unto the path.” He who would keep up intimate converse with the Lord must habitually find in the Scriptures the highway of such companionship. God’s aristocracy, His nobility, the princes of His realm, are not the wise, mighty, and high-born of earth, but often the poor, weak, despised of men, who abide in His presence and devoutly commune with Him through His inspired Word.
Blessed are they who have thus learned to use the key which gives free access, not only to the King’s Treasuries, but to the King Himself!
–Taken from George Muller of Bristol, by A.T.Pierson (perhaps the best biography of Muller ever written), pages 49-51.