SBCS was established in 1984 by a group of Southern Baptist supporters to offer educational programs in Christian education under exempt status. In 1990, the Conference of Korean Baptist Churches in Southern California recognized it as a non-profit educational institution and made SBCS as its training center for Southern Baptist followers. The Conference is supported by some 100 Korean Baptist churches in Southern California and affiliated with the California Southern Baptist Convention. In an effort to meet the growing need for bilingual pastors by the Korean Baptist churches in Southern California, the Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary in Mill Valley, California and SBCS entered into a contract allowing SBCS to offer the Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary's Ethnic Leadership Development (ELD) program. The ELD program is a 60 semester unit certificate program, comparable to an Associate of Arts in Theological degree. SBCS offered the Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary's ELD program from 1984 to 1994. Those who are responding to the call to serve God must receive a three-year Master of Divinity degree. The Conference, therefore, resolved to establish a degree-granting institution of higher education offering undergraduate program and a theological seminary. In 1991, SBCS was authorized by the Department of Education, State of California Education Code Section 94310; Bachelor of Arts in Theology, Master of Divinity, Master of Arts in Christian Education. In July of 1997, SBCS was granted a full institutional approval by the California Bureau for post-secondary and Vocational Education.