James Marvin Powell

(March 12, 1907 - January 25, 2004)

Albert E. Farley

I learned this week that J.M. Powell, of Nashville, Tennessee, died on Sunday, January 25, at the age of 96 years. Brother Powell was one of my teachers at Ohio Valley College almost forty years ago. I studied under him in several classes. All of them were excellent. The most memorable was on the Book of Acts.

My remembrances of our professor Powell are of his being very knowledgeable, highly motivated, honest, and deeply religious in the faith of Jesus Christ. His notes and lectures were well prepared and full. He flew up to Parkersburg each week for his classes and there never seemed to be enough time for him to discuss all of the things he wanted to teach to us.

His class on Acts was my first truly in-depth study of this wonderful book. My eyes were opened to new and wondrous truths. When I went to my first full-time work with the church at Belington, WV, in 1966, one of the first things I did was to paint a map of the Roman world on a full-sized bed sheet, hang it up in front of the auditorium class, and teach the Book of Acts!

When I learned of brother Powell's death, I took down my old class notebook on "The Acts Of The Apostles" and leafed through its pages once again. As I scanned the pages, I bowed my head to God and thanked Him for allowing me to have this brief but O so valuable association with this good man. My mind went to the Book of Acts record of the brief meeting between Phillip and the man from Ethiopia. When Phillip asked, "Understandeth thou what thou readest?," the eunuch answered, "How can I except some man should guide me." I will always be indebted to this man and to all of my other faithful teachers who guided me to a better understanding of the Bible. With the eunuch, I rejoice. Editor.


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