HISTORY OF LIFT
Dr. Jesse L. Trotter founded L.I.F.T. (Life Institute for Training) in 1972 as the United World Crusade for Christ, Incorporated. LIFT Bible College was initially part of the Crusade as Lift Bible School, offering a two-year course in Biblical Studies and certified programs.
Dr. Trotter was the Pastor of Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church in Ocean Springs, MS for 42 years. He was Moderator of the Shiloh Missionary Baptist District Association for many years. In 1973, Dr. Linwood Bolton was selected as the school’s first Academic Dean. Dr. Lawrence Collins succeeded him, and Professor John Byrd came after him. In 1979 Lift was incorporated by the State of Mississippi as LIFT Bible Crusade College and Seminary, Incorporated.
When Dr. Trotter founded LIFT, he desired to make seminary education very accessible. Many pastors, especially within the black church, are bi-vocational and therefore, are unable to leave their busy pastorates and secular jobs to go off for seminary training. LIFT addresses this issue by utilizing what we call the local church model. The Local Church Model of seminary training allows LIFT to work with cooperating pastors to establish extensions within the context of the local church in the communities where pastors, ministers and lay people live. This enhances the accessibility of seminary training for all who have an interest. To make classes even more accessible to the working student, most classes are offered during the evening.
Today LIFT continues to succeed with its mission with members of its alumni serving in Christian ministry roles across the United States.
8 OBJECTIVES Central to its objective, LIFT seeks to bring each student to the level where they:
Understand and apply the doctrines of evangelical Christianity and the basis for and significance of the Gospel as it relates to persons individually and corporately.
Understand the Christian worldview and can intelligently communicate it and demonstrate it in their lifestyle.
Understand and demonstrate the process of biblical interpretation and doctrinal formulation.
Understand and teach the Bible effectively.
Understand and demonstrate an understanding and application of the skills for the specific ministry for which the student is preparing.
Understand and demonstrate a thorough knowledge of essential biblical principles and teachings for lay or ordained work in the church or the community.
Demonstrate and apply an understanding of the concepts, principles and biblical teachings through practicums, field experience and other written and verbal measures.
Think critically about and present a reasoned defense of the faith against other beliefs. A reasoned defense of one's faith refers to the presentation of an apologetic viewpoint which is based on biblical revelation and is also intellectually and rationally sound.
LIFT Bible Crusade College and Seminary, Incorporated is accredited by the American Accrediting Association of Theological Institution, Incorporated, Rocky Mount, North Carolina. LIFT was chartered as a collegiate institution by the State of Mississippi in 1979 and is authorized by the State of Mississippi to grant such degrees as the Board of Trustees shall determine. In 1978 LIFT was approved by the Southern Accrediting Association of Bible Institutes, Bible Colleges and Seminaries of Atlanta, Georgia as a consultative status fellowship member. In 1983 LIFT was approved by the Shiloh Missionary Baptist District Association as one of its financial and educational objectives. In 1985 LIFT was approved and adopted by the South Mississippi Baptist State Convention as one of its financial goals and educational objectives. In 1993 LIFT was approved and adopted by the Second Sweet Pilgrim Missionary Baptist District Association as one of its financial goals and educational objectives.
LIFT does not desire to be guided or dominated by any, other than God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit; it believes the route of independence, under the leadership of the Lord Jesus Christ, is the best way. LIFT is supported by charitable donations from churches, associations, conventions, friends and tuition. The programs offered are primarily intended to serve the Christian community; however, others who pursue these studies will benefit as well. The governance of LIFT includes collegial input from faculty and students. Students impact directly on matters of governance through providing recommendations to the administration. In all cases, decision-making is the responsibility of the administration with the Chancellor being the final decision maker on all academic, administrative or any other matter relative to Lift Bible Crusade College and Seminary, Inc.