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Bethel Bible Institute (BBI) was founded by Dr. John Mannion in 1996 for the purpose of training missionaries and church leaders. Pastor Ron Johnson, who was a sectional presbyter with the Potomac District, assumed the presidency. By 1997, BBI was approved by the Potomac District of the Assemblies of God as a training institute to provide the educational requirements for credentialing ministers at the certification and licensing level with the Assemblies of God.

In 1998, Rev. Stuart Ross was appointed as director to lead the school for training pastors, evangelists, missionaries, Christian education workers, and lay ministers. Rev. Ross was instrumental in positioning the school for the training of Hampton Master's Commission students and local pastors.

In 2002, Pastor Ron Johnson appointed Dr. Terry Minter as President of Bethel Bible Institute. Pastor Johnson and Dr. Minter envisioned a four-year college and began the transition from a Bible Institute into a college that awards both bachelor's and associate's degrees. In 2005, Bethel College was incorporated in the Commonwealth of Virginia and is a recognized IRS non-profit corporation. In February 2009, America's premier Biblical accreditation agency, the Association for Biblical Higher Education, granted Bethel College a new level of accreditation, Candidacy Status and in 2013 granted Bethel College accreditation status. Following Dr. Terry Minter’s resignation in September 2009, Dr. Ron DeBerry was named Interim President. In April 2011, the Board named Rev. Glenn Reynolds as Interim President as the presidential search committee searched for the new president. In April 2012, the board named Rev. Glenn Reynolds as President. Following Dr. Reynolds departure in 2016, the board hired Dr. Mark Wootton as the new president in May 2017.

In 2006, Bethel College moved into a new facility with a new library and several new classrooms to be shared with Bethel Church. Bethel College continues to prepare people for ministry and training church planters.