The International Baptist Theological Seminary has had a special mission within the world Baptist family. Founded initially by Southern Baptists in 1949 in the town of Rüschlikon, Zurich, Switzerland it relocated to Prague 1996. By 1989 ownership of the institution transfered to all the Baptist Unions of Europe and the Middle East in membership of the European Baptist Federation. It has had a special focus and mission within the European Baptist Federation as a postgraduate centre at the heart of a wide network of theological institutions and also co-ordinating a range of conferences relevant to advancing the life and mission of Baptists throughout Europe and the Middle East. Graduates of the institution have and continue to serve in positions of leadership throughout the world.
Throughout its history IBTS has intentionality sought to bring together the faith community, academia, mission, church development, spirituality and community as: a learning community; a community of spirituality; a multicultural community; a community of higher academic rigour specialising in research and reflection on Baptist issues and with a lecturing team drawn from across the world.
IBTS Centre Amsterdam carries forward the values, academic excellence and commitment to research and reflection on Baptist and wider issues in the service of the church that characterised the previous incarnations of the institution.
A detailed History of IBTS, before becoming IBTSC Amsterdam, was produced in 2013 by Carol Woodfin and entitled: An Experiment in Christian Internationalism: A History of the European Baptist Theological Seminary and is published by the Baptist History & Heritage Society, 2013, 448 pages.