SEBRING, Fla.—James D. Maxwell II, farmer, college teacher, and pastor, died Feb. 20 at Maranatha Manor after a brief illness. He was 95.
Maxwell was a faculty member at Omaha (now Faith) Baptist Bible College and Peace River Bible Institute in Alberta, Canada. Later he started five Baptist churches in Colorado and Arizona and was interim pastor at several churches.
He accepted Jesus Christ as his Savior when he was 14, the same year his mother died, under the ministry of Ezra Temple, an evangelist known as “The Tramp Preacher.”
Maxwell began studying for the ministry in 1953, in his mid-thirties, after farming in Shellsburg and Vinton, Iowa. He sold his farm, and he and his wife, Helen, moved to Minnesota, where he enrolled in Northwestern College. He completed his undergraduate work at Prairie Bible Institute in Alberta, Canada, and received his master’s degree from Trinity College in Florida.
Maxwell took a personal interest in everyone he met and had friends all over the country. Hundreds of people came to know Christ as their Savior under his ministry, and more than 10 men were called into the ministry when he was their pastor.
James and Helen loved to travel, visiting 49 states and about 20 foreign countries. Their younger daughter, Ruth, joined them on a trip around the world in 1971.
In 2009 his wife went to be with the Lord after 71 years of marriage. Maxwell is also preceded in death by his parents, Thomas and Alta Maxwell; his sister, Genevieve; and his brother, Laurence.
He is survived by a son, James III, president of Faith Baptist Bible College and Theological Seminary, Ankeny, Iowa; his daughters, Sharon McGrew and Ruth McFarland; six grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; a half brother, John Maxwell; and nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 22, 5:00–8:00 p.m. at the Ankeny Memorial Funeral Home in Ankeny. Funeral services will be held at Thursday, Feb. 23, at 11 a.m. at Ankeny Baptist Church, 2842 S.W. Third St.
Memorials may be given to the Library Fund at Faith Baptist Bible College and Theological Seminary, 1900 N.W. Fourth St., Ankeny, IA 50023.