YouTube Documentary on George Mueller

Yesterday, I quoted George Mueller on the Bible.  Here again is what he said:

The vigor of our spiritual life will be in exact proportion to the place held by the Bible in our life and thoughts.  I solemnly state this from the experience of fifty-four years…I have read the Bible through one hundred times, and always with increasing delight.  Each time it seems like a new book to me.  Great has been the blessing from consecutive, diligent, daily study.  I look upon it as a lost day when I have not had a good time over the Word of God.

I thought you might want to know more about this fascinating man of God.  Here’s what Wikipedia says about him in the opening of its article:

George Müller (German – born as : Johann Georg Ferdinand Müller) (27 September 1805 – 10 March 1898), a Christian evangelist and Director of the Ashley Down orphanage in Bristol, England, cared for 10,024 orphans in his life.  He was well known for providing an education to the children under his care, to the point where he was accused of raising the poor above their natural station in life. He also established 117 schools which offered Christian education to over 120,000 children, many of them being orphans.

Here’s the full article from Wikipedia.  In short, Mueller cared for orphans in the age of Charles Dickens.  And Dickens even came to see him…and commended him.

And here is a one-hour documentary on Mueller’s life.  It’s on YouTube and broken up into six ten-minute segments.  It’s not the best documentary ever produced, but Mueller and his wife were an amazing couple and did a lot for the victims of England’s Industrial Revolution.

By the way, Mueller was a German, living most of his adult life in England.  I have seen his name spelled various ways and you see some of that variety even in this post.

750 Million People Still Don’t Have Access to Clean Drinking Water

Take a look at what we don’t have to do in order to have a drink of clean water.

In this April 4 photo, residents of Dala stand in line with containers to collect drinking water from a pond in suburbs of Yangon, Myanmar. Every afternoon, the long lines start to form, hundreds of men, women and children waiting to dip their plastic buckets into the lotus-filled pond, their only source of clean drinking water during the dry season of April and May.

Full story, including bar chart and link to the full report from the World Health Organization at Mashable (a 1 min read; 147 words)

World Vision and Samaritan’s Purse

The current World Vision flap calls to mind some interesting history.

World Vision was founded in 1950 by a man named Bob Pierce, who after leaving World Vision, founded Samaritan’s Purse.  The two organizations were each formed with essentially the same purpose: to help the world’s poor in the name of Jesus Christ.  I’m pretty sure World Vision is much larger than Samaritan’s Purse, but I don’t know how much larger.

Bob Pierce famously said, “Let my heart be broken with the things that break the heart of God.”  Pierce wanted to mobilize Christians to care for the poor around the world, and succeeded in creating two organizations – both of which have outlived him – to do just that.  Through Him, he continues to achieve a transfer of significant American material wealth into food, water, and other necessities for the needy around the globe.  In so doing, he gives practical ways that willing Christians can reach those most in need of help.

Before he died in 1978, Pierce brought in Franklin Graham (Billy Graham’s son) to lead Samaritan’s Purse.  As a young adult, Franklin had been rebellious to his father and his father’s faith, and Bob Pierce became a mentor of his redemption.  When the news broke earlier this week that World Vision was essentially going along with the cultural drift toward the corruption of marriage, Franklin Graham, along with Al Mohler, was one of the first to speak out against the move.  In a statement, Franklin Graham said:

“I was shocked today to hear of World Vision’s decision to hire employees in same-sex marriages. The Bible is clear that marriage is between a man and a woman.  My dear friend, Bob Pierce, the founder of World Vision and Samaritan’s Purse, would be heartbroken. He was an evangelist who believed in the inspired Word of God.  World Vision maintains that their decision is based on unifying the church – which I find offensive – as if supporting sin and sinful behavior can unite the church.  From the Old Testament to the New Testament, the Scriptures consistently teach that marriage is between a man and woman and any other marriage relationship is sin.”

Although World Vision has reversed its ill-advised decision, its long-time supporters remain shaken and will need time before their confidence in the organization can be restored, if at all.  Of these two Pierce-founded organizations that help the truly poor in the name of Christ, one appears to remain wholly steadfast to its original purpose.


Financing Ministry

The blog post linked below presents a well-argued case by Lydia McGrew for the self-financing of Christian ministry where possible.

In this post, Wintery Knight gives links similar counsel from Christian apologist J. Warner (Jim) Wallace.

Wintery Knight also provides links to some of his own thoughts on this subject.

All three of these voices are consistent in the advice that they give.

Likewise, I myself neither solicit nor accept donations.  Nevertheless, I encourage you, when you are willing and able, to donate to others who are preaching the true gospel of Jesu Christ so that they may not be distracted in their work for the Lord.  This, too, seems consistent with the counself from the three folks listed above.  Just remember not to do anything under compulsion “for the Lord loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7).

In short, there are two directions the Lord would have us give money and other resources if we want to give to Him:  to the poor and to the proclaimers of Jesus Christ.

Lydia McGrew: we need an army of tentmakers | Wintery Knight.

BBC News – Child victims of Pakistan’s ‘begging mafia’


For many Pakistani Muslims, visiting a shrine and donating money to beggars go hand in hand. But their generosity has encouraged the creation of a “begging mafia” which forces thousands of children into a life of slavery.

Shrines dedicated to holy men are dotted across most cities and towns in Pakistan. In the folk Islam of the region, they are regarded as saints, and can attract huge numbers of worshippers, eager to pray for their blessings.

The shrines have always been a magnet for beggars, especially children, as many of the pilgrims believe giving money to the poor will increase the chance of their prayers being heard.

The result? Children are being kidnapped and traded between begging gangs, says Mohammed Ali, founder of the Roshni Helpline charity.

“In 2010, 3,000 children went missing in Karachi alone,” says Ali.

“Many of these children will be moved around shrines in Pakistan. They will have their heads shaved. They will be tattooed. They will be made unrecognisable to their parents.

The complete article can be found at BBC News – Child victims of Pakistan’s ‘begging mafia’.

I thank God that the BBC is shining a light on this.

How Churchianity Robs the Poor

The following statistics come from an Amazon book review of The Hole in Our Gospel by Rich Stearns, CEO of WorldVision, a large humanitarian relief organization.

* The total annual income of American churchgoers: $5.2 trillion
* Amount available if each of them gave 10% of their salary: $520 billion
* Estimated annual cost to eliminate extreme poverty in the world: $65 billion
* Annual cost for universal primary education for ALL children in the world: $6 billion
* Annual cost to bring clean water to most of the world: $9 billion
* Annual cost to bring basic health and nutrition for the world: $13 billion
* Total to eradicate the world’s greatest problems: $93 billion (1.8% of American Christian’s income)

Jesus never asked that people give money to support the church; He did ask that people give to support the poor.  Therefore, all the church buildings you see represent a diversion of funds from the poor.  This is how churchianity robs the poor.

Of course, as the review states, churchgoers don’t actually give ten percent.  It’s more like two percent.  But, as you can see from the stats above, that would still be enough to eradicate the greatest problems of the world’s poor.