Rev. Herbert Nathaniel Graves was called home to be with The Lord on Wednesday, August 21, 2019.
Herbert Nathaniel Graves was born to the union of the late Oscar and Carrie Graves on October 27, 1952 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was the eldest of the siblings. He enjoyed a happy childhood which was full of love and was treasured by the family.
Herbert, affectionately known as “Herbie” was an outstanding student. He attended The Philadelphia Public School System and excelled in his academic pursuits. His achievements garnered the attention of local and regional private schools. In 1970, he graduated from the highly acclaimed Middlesex Academy in Concord, Mass. He also attended many colleges and institutes, among which included Tufts University in Somerville, Massachusetts.
In addition, Herbert was an avid reader and a gifted musician. He was an avid comic book reader, a trivia buff, a Star Trek & Jeopardy enthusiast and a historian. He read hundreds of books, but eventually his search of knowledge was consumed and replaced by his love of The 1611 Authorized King James Holy Bible. Plus, Herb played the violin, the bass and the rhythm guitar; he was an accomplished guitarist who provided music for such notables as Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes, B.B. King, among others. His loved of music transformed in to a love of The Word of God.
In the year 1978, Herbert made the most pivotal decision of his life. Coming off of the musical tour with The Blue Notes, dissatisfied with his current conditions and worried about future events, he found himself on Miami Beach with a book. The book was “The Late Great Planet Earth” written by Hal Lindsey; it convinced him he needed eternal security. He accepted Jesus Christ as his Savior and Lord.
Led by The Holy Spirit and full of zeal, Herbert passionately pursued God. He graduated from Deliverance Evangelistic Bible Institute (Phila.); he attended Temple Student Life Center along with longtime friend, Kirk Wheeler. Together, Kirk and Herb, taught Bible studies. He attended Dropsie University in 1979 where he studied Hebrew and Greek.
While studying at Camden Bible Institute, Herbert met the love of his life, Elizabeth Marcia Robinson. Shortly thereafter, they were united in holy matrimony on October 10, 1981; to that faithful union was born one son, Matthew Douglas Graves.
Herbert was a public servant-dividing his time between the public library and Untied Postal Service. He worked faithfully until his health prevented him from further service; but God had other plans. Upon his graduations from Grace Bible Institute (Voorhees) in 1986 and under the leadership of the Late Rev. Grayland Witherspoon of St. Paul Baptist Church (Camden), he became a licensed and ordained minister. He headed up the Evangelism and Street Evangelism ministries.
A few years later, Herbert Graves answered the comprehensive call of Christian education; the board voted and appointed him the Dean of Grace Bible Institute in 1996. The school provided the perfect platform for him to: uphold and endorse the infallible, inerrant & inspired 1611 King James Holy Bible, teach and preach the gospel, promote the continuance of sound doctrine, and train and teach students who would go on to become pastors, teachers, evangelists, missionaries and students. Throughout his lengthy illness, he never complained and continues to uphold the office of The Dean of Grace Bible Institute, faithfully for approximately 23 years. Living out his life verse of:
“But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by
whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.” -Galatians 6:14
Herbert leaves to cherish his memory: His beloved, devoted wife, “Proverbs 31 Woman,” Marcia; “the joy his life” His Son, Matthew; Siblings: Sheila Dawkins (Edward); Brenda Flowers; Oscar Graves (Patricia); Michael Graves (Adrianne); James Graves; Darlena Graves; Patricia Franklin (Tommy); Victoria Miller (Anthony); Alisa Stallings; Jessie Graves (Danielle); Karen Crawley (Douglas); Annette “Choppy” Saunders (Bobby); Karl W. Medley, Sr. Aunts: Shirley Moyler; Barbara Henderson; Sheila Lumpkin; Elizabeth Smith; Joan Goodwater and Grace McEady. Uncles: Robert McEady; Philip McEady and Thomas McEady. A host of nieces, nephews, cousins, friends and students.
Relatives and friends are invited to attend his viewing Saturday morning from 9:30AM to 10:30AM at the Solid Rock Baptist Church 420 S. White Horse Pike, Berlin, NJ 08009. Homegoing serivice 10:30AM. Interment Berlin Cemetery, Berlin, NJ. Arrangements under the direction of COSTANTINO FUNERAL HOME, BERLIN, NJ. To leave lasting condolences or photos, please use the links on this page.