George Müller (1805-1898), English preacher and philanthropist, was born near Halberstadt, Germany, on the 27th of September 1805, the son of an exciseman [formerly, a government agent who collects excise tax on goods and prevents smuggling]. He subsequently became a naturalized British subject.
Educated in Germany, he resolved in 1826 to devote himself to missionary work, and in 1828 went to London to prepare for an appointment offered him by the Society for promoting Christianity among the Jews. In 1830, however, he gave up the idea of missionary work, and became minister of a small congregation at Teignmouth, Devonshire. He contended that the temporal as well as the spiritual needs of life could be supplied by prayer, and on this principle abolished pew rents and refused to take a fixed salary. After two years at Teignmouth, Müller removed to Bristol, where he spent the rest of his life.
He devoted himself particularly to the care of orphan children. He began by taking a few under his charge, but in course of time their number increased to 2000, settled in five large houses erected for the purpose at Ashley Down, near Bristol. The money required for the carrying on of this work was voluntarily contributed, mainly as a result of the wide circulation of Müller's narrative The Lord's Dealings with George Müller.
When he was over seventy he started on a preaching mission, which lasted nearly seventeen years and included Europe, America, India, Australia and China.
[He died at Bristol on the 10th of March 1898. See A. T. Pierson, George Müller of Bristol (1899)].
From The Encyclopædia Britannica. 11th ed. New York: Encyclopædia Britannica, 1911.
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