Gabriel Ballantyne Fyfe (1909 – 1999)
Gabriel Fyfe was born on 28th August 1909 into a Christian home and brought up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. At school his great passion, like that of his brother Andrew, was playing cricket. He was in both the school team and a local one. Papers found after he died included detailed statistics on the results of these games showing runs scored, batting averages, boundaries etc. and showed him at the top of the table. However all this was to change. While still teenagers he and his sister Margaret were approached and challenged by Alec Marshall, a Scottish evangelist, as they were leaving the gospel meeting at Elim Hall, Glasgow. After praying with them they were both gloriously saved. Very soon after he was baptised and received into fellowship. His great passion now was following the Lord who had saved him.
Under the godly guidance and encouragement of his Bible Class leader James Moffat, young 'Riel Fyfe spent all his spare time studying the Scriptures and attending Bible Readings. He quickly became engrossed in the Lord's work being active in the Sunday School and becoming secretary of the Bible Class magazine 'Knowing the Scriptures', which went all over world with the object of building up young Christians. He was also involved in the annual Conference for Christian Youth attended by about 1000 each year and together with William Morrow started the Ayr Bible Readings.
GB's lifetime work of building up young men and women with a sound knowledge and understanding of the Scripture, commenced in those early years of his Christian life. Immediately after his marriage to Betty Proudfoot in 1938, he started a Bible study for young Christians each Friday night in their home when about thirty gathered for prayer and intensive study during the winter months.
As well as GB's personal work among the young, during the summer he was enthusiastic in tract band work visiting small villages. Open-air meetings were held at strategic points and gospel leaflets given to those in nearby homes and shops. Eventually he was responsible for a weekly open-air meeting in the centre of Glasgow where crowds thronged the busy street and listened intently to the gospel story. His keen interest in teaching God's Word was not confined to his local assembly but extended to meetings all over Great Britain. However when asked to go abroad for a series of engagements, GB declined, feeling that there was so much to do in the homeland.
In 1941 he was posted to London, to a new sphere of service for which the Lord seemed to have been training him. Departure, with his wife Betty, was a great blow to their farm and the saints in Glasgow. As the train left Glasgow Central station, the platform was crowded with young people and the familiar hymn, "God be with you till we meet again" was sung with enthusiasm.
GB and his wife, Betty, were soon immersed once again in the Lord's service, meeting with the saints meeting in The Grove, Ealing. Their chosen home was within easy reach of the assembly and a local underground station with connections to all parts of London and the rest of the UK. These were essential factors in his local and wider service for the Lord, particularly as they never owned a car. For a short period GB did own a scooter and travelled all over London on it. However, when another brother's greater need for transport became known it was given to him.
GB laboured for the Lord in Ealing with zeal and enthusiasm for 56 years and served as an elder for over 50 of them, caring for and encouraging the flock of God. During much of this time he also held a senior and responsible position in the civil service. Like Daniel, he daily set aside time to pray for the Lord's servants at home and abroad. His ability to prepare spiritual food for saints of all ages was clearly a gift he received from the Lord. He used this gift for God's glory and everything was done out of love for the Lord. His knowledge and understanding of the Scriptures came from many hours spent in the Lord's presence and with His Word.
Upstairs, at the back of The Grove, was a room known as "the crows nest". It was there that GB held a Friday night Bible study class for young people from The Grove and elsewhere. They all received a solid grounding in the Scriptures, which has stood them in good stead throughout their lives - and some were saved at this class. There were no fancy methods, no gimmicks, no wasted time and no extras, just plain, clear, intensive study of the Word of God with a good balance between doctrine and practice. GB taught from practical experience and knowledge and was an authority on his subject. In his life he practised what he taught, he listened, he advised and corrected. His often declared motive was that each one "would gain, not just head knowledge of the Scriptures, but an experimental knowledge of the Lord".
While the Fyfes had no children of their own, there are many that regard them as their spiritual parents. Their home was one of constant hospitality, laughter and fun. Many single young people who came to Ealing greatly valued the hospitality shown at 39 Byron Road. Indeed it was probably those who were younger in the 50s and 60s who best knew the other side GB. It was the Bible Class parties at The Grove that reveal what fun the 'serious platform speaker' could be.
In the early years of his time at Ealing, GB started monthly Bible Readings at The Grove. These were of great profit not only to the local saints but also to the many that came from further afield. His firm but loving control of these Bible Readings was of great benefit to all and he ensured that younger ones, perhaps overawed by some of those present, were able to make a contribution or ask a question. GB was keen to encourage those with a developing gift for public speaking. A starting point for many was the open-air meeting held every Sunday evening on Ealing Green. His simple but effective method was to quietly come up behind a young man with the comment "you are on next". This was not a matter for discussion it was one of fact. Some still remember his advice when first asked to speak: "If you dry up give them some Scriptures and then get down." As always GB was the example to follow with his brief, clear and sincere declaration of the gospel message.
In conjunction with the Eastbourne Bible Readings, GB also involved in starting the annual London Convention which commenced in 1961 at the Friends' Meeting House and then moved to Westminster Chapel. In 1965, Young People's weekends were introduced at Hildenborough, moving to Sunbury Court some years later a continuing until 1997. In the midst of all this activity and a responsible job so long way from home, GB wrote many articles for magazines, contributed to commentaries, wrote a book on prophecy and travelled the country teaching and preaching. His earnest desire to serve the Lord resulted in him taking (what was unusual at that time) early retirement at the age of 60 and he was able to continue into his eighties when ill health took over. Throughout his busy life of service for the Lord GB's wife, Betty, was a practical and spiritual helpmeet and a tremendous support in all that he did. Their married life was one of partnership and a modern day equivalent of Aquilla and Priscilla 'always abounding in the work of the Lord' together. She was one to whom many young sisters went for help and advice. This they always received accompanied by much comfort and encouragement. When the Lord took her on 18th June 1984 this was a great loss to GB.
GB's concern for believers of all ages was evidenced when, in 1955, he and a number of other local brethren saw the need for suitable accommodation for elderly saints who had become unable to look after themselves. This resulted in the purchase of a large Victorian house in Ealing and its adaptation for this purpose. After much hard work, Bethany Eventide Home was opened on 4th May 1957 with a full complement of 19 residents. He was a member of both the council, which had overall responsibility for the home, as well as the management committee to which was delegated the day to day running of the home. He was its chairman from 1979 until 1983.
In 1987 the home had to be closed and sold as a result of new legislation but the proceeds from the sale went towards the building of a new one in Pamber Heath, Hampshire. This new home was opened in November 1992 and named after the old one - 'Bethany'.
During the 90s GB's health began to deteriorate quite seriously and his welfare became a matter of concern to many. Eventually his health was so poor that he was unable to care for himself adequately, and with his eyesight almost gone took up residence at Bethany in February 1997. From conversations with him it was evident that he was very happy there and appreciated all the love and care he received. It was from there that the Lord took him into His own presence on 2 November 1999. The Christ-like life he had lived since conversion was obvious to all during his stay at Bethany.
All messages by GB Fyfe, All messages in English
|Speaker||Title and Tags||Date||Place||Lang|
|Fyfe, GB||A King Shall Reign In Righteousness ~ Isa 32:1||unavailable||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Armageddon And After ~ Psalm 2 Psalm||unavailable||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Causes Of Stumbling||unavailable||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Exclusiveness Of The Church||unavailable||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Intro To Prophecy ~ Deut 32 Prophecy||unavailable||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Isaiah 52 & 53 Isaiah||unavailable||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Lordship Of The Spirit||-- 1975 --||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Lordship Of The Spirit ~ Acts 16v20 Acts||unavailable||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Now Is Christ Risen ~ John 20:1 Christ||unavailable||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Purity Of The Church||-- 1975 --||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Signs Of Christs Coming||-- 1976 --||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||The Christian's Exercises||-- 1976 --||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||The Church Envisiaged||-- 1975 --||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||The Cost And Compensation Of Discipleship||-- 1976 --||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||The Day Of Vengence Of Our God ~ Isa 65||unavailable||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||The Olivet Prophecy ~ Matt 24:1 Prophecy||unavailable||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||The Role Of Russia ~ Ezek 38||unavailable||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Times Of The Gentiles ~ Dan 2||unavailable||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Week Of Meetings ~ Armageddon And After||-- 1990 --||unavailable|
|Fyfe, GB||Week Of Meetings ~ The Olivet Prophecy Prophecy||unavailable||unavailable|