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F. B. Meyer: 'If I Had a Hundred Lives...' (Holman) (History Makers)

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On F. B. Meyer's death in 1929 The Daily Telegraph called him 'The Archbishop of the Free Churches'. The New York Observer noted that 'He has an international fame and his services are constantly sought by churches over the wide and increasing empire of Christendom.' To the secular press of his time he was a key player on the world scene - yet this is the first chronological account of Meyer's life. Meyer was the minister one of Britain's first 'megachurches'. He was friends with D. L. Moody and ministered on both sides of the Atlantic, mirroring in America what D. L. Moody was able to undertake in the U.K. He came from a conventional, middle class Victorian background and experienced no dramatic conversion. He was not a distinguished scholar or dramatic orator. His slight figure and retiring manner meant that he did not stand out in a crowd. Yet he drew crowds by the thousands, wrote books, which sold by the millions, and attracted working class people.The range of Meyer's activities is astonishing: preacher, pastor, writer, social activist, free church leader, Baptist president, advocate for missionary work and more. In his last years, he declared, 'If I had a hundred lives, they should be at Christ's disposal.' At times, it seemed as though he was living a hundred lives!



Bob Holman (1936-2016) was Professor of Social Policy at Bath University. He lived and worked in two deprived areas for 26 years. He has written academic books and a biography of George Lansbury, Christian socialist leader of the Labour party.



"A vivid picture: preacher and evangelist, happier with the poor than the rich; remarkable social entrepreneur; and political progressive.....Meyer has a lot to teach our churches today."

- RT Hon Stephen Timms MP


"FB Meyer was a national figure strongly associated with Waterloo when he died in 1929.

Bob Holman's biography, in the History makers series brings to light much Waterloo history for Meyer was twice minister of Christ Church opposite North Lambeth Station." 

- Leigh Hatt, 'in SE 1', London


"This is an extremely well written biography of a lesser-known giant though he was internationally famous. Such was his skill as a Bible teacher and devotional writer that he could gather immense crowds and sell thousands of copies of his writings...Meyer is a model for those of us who wish to reunite what God always wanted joined together - the unchanging Gospel of Jesus Christ and the social gospel of community transformation in Christ's name. He is a great guide and inspiration in the building of mega-churches that could transform whole cities."

- Greg Haslam, Faithworks Magazine