Bible Bytes - F. B. Meyer
Jeremy Singer, Manchester, England [SEE PROFILE BELOW]
Frederick Brotherton Meyer was a Baptist minister in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Based in Liverpool, York, Leicester and finally London, he travelled widely and wrote prolifically. Wikipedia has a brief biography at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_Brotherton_Meyer. F. B. Meyer is one of my favourite authors. His writing style is often dramatic, at times imaginative, but always challenging and deeply devotional. Since F. B. Meyer died over 70 years ago, the copyright on his works has expired. This means they can be freely reprinted, uploaded to the internet, and even photocopied. For instance, I have a perfectly legible photocopy of his book John the Baptist.
Meyer’s best-known books are probably his character studies on Bible giants from Abraham: The Obedience of Faith, to Paul: A Servant of Jesus Christ. He also has overview-style commentaries on many books of the Bible. His other major genres include works on general Christian living, and various daily reading schemes. For this month’s column, I set out to investigate how much F. B. Meyer material is available online.
If you own a Kindle or other ebook reader, Amazon (http://www.amazon.co.uk) has an F. B. Meyer section in its Kindle store. Only a handful of his books are available here, but they are reasonably priced: ranging from The Secret of Guidance for 70p to Samuel for £5. These may be cheaper than buying actual volumes second hand.
For web browsing, several online Christian library sites such as http://www.ccel.org/ccel/meyer/ (featured before in this column) and http://www.gotothebible.com/HTML/MeyerFB.html have some of his character study books and other commentaries. His significant work on John’s Gospel is available at http://www.preceptaustin.org/gospel_of_john-f_b_meyer-1.htm.
I also find Meyer’s daily reading schemes most helpful. Our Daily Walk at http://www.preceptaustin.org/our_daily_walk_by_f_b_meyer_-_jan.htm has a verse plus comment for every day of the year. Our Daily Homily (available at the above link on the www.gotothebible.com site) picks out a single verse from each chapter of the Bible. Even in the most obscure chapters, Meyer finds some delightful gems of encouragement.
If you are already a fan of F. B. Meyer, then you might find the online resources helpful for searching through his works. On the other hand, if you have not previously encountered him, I recommend browsing through one or two volumes. Admittedly, his vocabulary is, at times, flowery, but what he says strikes home to the heart time and again.