During the 2018 Commencement Ceremony, The Master’s Seminary had the joy of granting one additional degree—a degree that has historically been a part of the church, and of acknowledging and giving honor to whom honor is due. It is an honorary degree, bestowed by the seminary on rare occasions, to men who have been used by God for ministry in the church in remarkable and unusual ways. On that evening, Dr. John MacArthur conferred the Doctor of Divinity degree upon Pastor H.B. Charles Jr.
A third-generation pastor, H.B. currently serves as senior pastor of Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church in Jacksonville, FL. At the age of eleven, H.B. began his public ministry under the watchful eye of his father and other pastoral leaders in the church. When asked how that was possible, H.B. said that the church leaders allowed him to preach five-minute and ten-minute sermons. Even then they recognized the gifts God had already placed in his life.
On November 5, 1990, the Mount Sinai Missionary Baptist Church of Los Angeles ended a year-long pastoral search. They selected H.B. to follow his father, H.B. Sr., who pastored the church for the past forty years. At the time they selected H.B., he was a seventeen-year-old senior at Los Angeles High School.
On December 12, 1998, H.B. married his best friend Krystal. On their first date, he brought her to Grace Community Church on a Sunday night, and many other similar dates followed. They are proud parents of three children: a son, H.B. III, and two lovely daughters, Natalie and Haley.
Having faithfully served Mount Sinai for eighteen years, the Lord changed H.B.’s pastoral assignment to the other side of the country—one of the most difficult challenges that a young pastor could ever take on. When he took up the position of senior pastor at Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church in the summer of 2008, the church was in deep distress. Today, the church has a participating membership of over 5,000 and continues to grow spiritually and numerically under H.B.’s leadership.
H.B.’s preaching has been published in the 2008 edition of the African-American Pulpit Scholarly Journal and his extensive writing ministry includes books such as It Happens After Prayer, The Difference Jesus Makes, A Biblical Answer for Racial Unity, On Pastoring, and On Preaching. H.B. is also a contributor to the recent book, High King of Heaven, published by The Master’s Seminary Press.
H.B. has gained many years of preaching experience in his young life. He has honed his skill and, in the words of Dr. Steve Lawson, is a “faithful man” who is “faithful to sound teaching.”