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About Berean

Edwin Chelli 2018 (2).jpg
From the President,
My heartfelt desire is that God would be magnified and glorified through the ministry of Berean Baptist Bible College & Seminary.  My life is dedicated to the expansion Christ's kingdom through the ministry of the Word of God and through the teaching of Biblical principles.  I believe that all people involved in ministry should be knowledgeable in the Scriptures and teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ who is faithful and true.
I hope it is your desire to follow Christ and His calling for your life.
"For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain."  Philippians 1:21
Dr. Edwin Chelli
President, BBBC&S
Statement of Faith

We believe:
1.  In the divine verbal and plenary inspiration of the original autographs of the Old and New Testaments of the Bible to the exclusion of the Apocrypha and that these scriptures are absolute in authority, complete in revelation, final in content, without any error in teaching, thus having supreme authority in all matters pertaining to faith, conduct, Christian life and the Christian church.

2.  In the existence of the one and only living and true God and in the unity of the Godhead.  There are three persons, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit the same in essence, equal in attributes and in every divine perfection, and executing distinct but harmonious offices in the great work of creation, redemption and salvation.

3.  In the miraculous virgin birth and the absolute deity of the Lord Jesus Christ:  In His sacrificial, substitutionary death on the cross of Calvary to make atonement for sin by the shedding of His precious blood once for all:  in His literal bodily resurrection, His ascension to heaven from the Mount of Olives, in His intercession for the saints at the right hand of the Father and in His visible, bodily pre-millenial return.

4.  In the personality, deity and power of the Holy Spirit of God convicting the world of sin and in the necessity and efficiency of His work in the enlightenment, regeneration, sanctification, enduement, resurrection and glorification of each believer.

5.  In the creation of man in the image and likeness of God and not by an evolutionary process; in the terrible reality of the fall of man, and in the total, universal depravity of mankind which has rendered him helpless and hopeless of salvation from sin by his own efforts. 

6.  In the redemption and salvation of sinners by grace alone through the mediatorial office of the Son of God, who by shedding His blood made a complete atonement for sins once and for all.

7.  In the full and free forgiveness of the sins of any and all who receive the Lord Jesus Christ as their own personal Savior.

8.  In the absolute necessity of regeneration as the initial step in salvation, i.e., sinners must be born again in order to be saved; that at the new birth Christ comes to dwell in the believer by the Holy Spirit, the spirit of the believer being miraculously united to him, making him the righteousness of God in Christ, that the proper evidence of the new birth appears in the holy fruit of repentance, faith and newness of life.

9.  In the “eternal security” of believers; that it is impossible for one born into the family of God to be lost and that a truly born believer will be finally and ultimately preserved unto eternal salvation.  That the souls of the believers are at death made perfect in holiness and immediately pass into glory; that the bodies of believers rest in the grave until their resurrection.

10.  In the bodily resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust; the eternal bliss of the saved and the everlasting punishment of the wicked.

11.  In the reality and personality of the devil, who together with a great multitude of other angels, fell from his first estate to become the enemy of God, man and all righteousness; and that the devil and his angels will ultimately be cast into the lake of fire.

12.  That all born-again believers should obey the Lord in the waters of baptism by immersion and the baptism is for born-again believers only; and that baptism has no saving efficacy, but rather is an act of loving obedience toward God.

13.  In the privilege and responsibility which each baptized believer has in partaking of the communion service with God’s people who are walking in the light and obedience to the Word of God; that the bread and wine are symbols only; that the communion service has no saving efficacy, but is a service of commemoration to assist the believer to meditate upon the sufferings and death of Christ, till His return.

14.  In the fullness of the Holy Spirit as absolutely essential for effective Christian service.

15.  That a truly scriptural church is a congregation of born-again believers who have been baptized scripturally by immersion.

16.  That the believers ought to be separated unto Christ from all worldly and sinful practices unto a life of Christian influence and service; that it is the obligation and duty of every believer to abstain from all appearances of evil, to avoid all things whereby a brother is made weak or made to stumble, to give no offence in anything, but by love to serve one another, in the necessity of maintaining according to the Word of God, the purity of the church in life and doctrine.

17.  That it is the obligation of every believer to witness by word and by deed to these truths and to proclaim the Gospel.

Our History

In the year 1956, the Lord brought together two of His servants – Dr. Jake Johnson, a missionary from Canada, and Dr. Jacob Chelli, a national business man called to the ministry.  Lengthy discussions took place about the great need to open a fundamental Bible College in India dedicated to teaching the truths of the Word of God without fear or compromise.  The goal was for nationals to reach the multitudes of people with their various languages, customs, and cultures.

Berean Baptist Bible College opened its doors in Bombay in November 1956 under the leadership of Dr. J.A. Johnson. Classes for part-time students commenced that year and full-time students were accepted in the following years. To meet the growing demand for theological studies, a branch of the college was opened in Bangalore in 1961.  From a humble beginning of 3 part time students, the student strength grew and currently averages around 250 students. Berean has 5,200 graduates serving the Lord throughout India, as well as Myanmar, Nepal, Bhutan, China, Thailand, Nigeria and the Andaman & Nicobar Islands.

In the beginning, the college operated in rented buildings. however God in His mercy graciously opened the way for the college to acquire nearly 2 acres of land in the heart of the city of Bangalore. The previous owner, an old missionary, Mr. Merritt, had the vision and prayed that a Bible College would someday stand upon his property.  God faithfully answered his prayer.  Thereafter the Lord enabled the college to build many buildings including a church, dormitories, a five-story administrative and classroom building. The Lord also provided for the “Jacob Chelli Memorial Building” to be completed in 2014.  The college library, fellowship hall and dining common are located here. We now have sufficient facilities and we thank the Lord for this.

All this would not have been possible without the untiring efforts of the late Dr. Jacob Chelli, who became the President of the College in 1964. Dr. Allan Ironside joined with him as the Vice President and the two labored together for the cause of Christ for many years.

In 1995 Dr. Allan Ironside retired to Canada, and in 2005 Dr. Jacob Chelli was called home to heaven.  The Lord called Dr. Chelli’s two sons Dr. Edwin Chelli as President and Rev. Johanan Chelli as Vice President to carry on the work of training servants for Christ.

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