What we believe

1. The one true and living God who eternally exists in three persons in unity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

2. The inherent corruptness of man through the Fall; The necessity of repentance and regeneration by grace and through faith in Christ alone and the eternal separation from God of the finally unrepentant.

3. The Virgin birth, sinless life, atoning death, triumphant resurrection, ascension and continuing intercession of our Lord Jesus Christ; His second coming and millennial reign upon earth.

4. The Justification and sanctification of believers through the finished work of Christ.

5. The baptism of the Holy spirit for believers with supernatural signs, empowering the church for its mission in the world.

6. The gifts of the Holy Spirit for the building up of the Church and ministry to the world.

7. The Sacraments of Baptism by immersion and of the Lord’s Supper

8. The divine inspiration and authority of the Holy Scriptures.

9. Christ’s leadership of the Church through apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, teachers, elders and deacons, for unity, maturity and growth of the church.

10. The security of the believer as he remains in Christ

11. The privilege and responsibility of bringing tithes and offerings to the Lord.

We believe that God reconciles man to Himself through the death and resurrection of The Lord Jesus Christ.

The main tenets(beliefs) are listed below along with a more detailed explanation of that tenet.

What is a tenet?

The word Tenet comes from the Latin word ‘tenere’ which means ‘to hold’. So the Tenets of Prospecthill Christian Fellowship are the Biblical truths which we ‘hold on’ to and safeguard. In a world of shifting morals and beliefs, we need anchor points to ‘hold’ us in the truth.

When you read Paul’s letters known as Epistles in the Bible, every time he wrote at some point he had to deal with bad or false teaching (heresy) and the same is relevant today. Many may lead the church astray either through ignorance or deliberate distortion of Scripture. Thus we need to ‘hold on’ to what the Bible tells us.

We accept the teachings of the Bible in its entirety, the Tenets do not seek to replace the Bible, but in eleven short statements seek to summarise the main truths. If you were to stop for a moment and think about it, that is a huge task.


Tenet 1: The unity of the Godhead and the Trinity of the Persons therein.

The Bible reveals there is one God.  It also shows that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are God.  Therefore Christian teaching of the Trinity states that God exists eternally as three persons who, while distinct, are equally and fully God.

Why is it necessary that we believe this?

If we don’t believe in God, we fall at the first hurdle.
The Bible states there is one God.  This stands in contrast to society in general who don’t believe in God.
Other world religions offer other and many ‘gods’.  We need to be clear that the Bible says there is one true God; all others are false and ‘man-made’ (idols).
The Bible says that God exists as three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  This is difficult to understand, but at the beginning of Scripture God says ‘let us make man in our image Genesis 1:26.
A very simplistic way to understand this is to look at water.  Water can exist in three states; liquid, solid form – ice, and as a vapour – steam.  At each state the water is different in form and appearance, yet still water.  God is Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  Each distinct, yet each God.

Pause for thought

Don’t be alarmed if you can’t understand everything about God, it is impossible to do so – he is God!  He simply asks us to believe in Him.  That is possible.

Useful Scriptures

Read Matthew 28:19, Matthew 28:2, 2 Corinthians 13:14.

Tenet 2: The utter depravity of human nature, the necessity for repentance and regeneration, and the eternal doom of the finally impenitent.

Every part of human nature is deeply damaged by the Fall.  We are born with a powerful bias toward sin.  God commands us to confess our sin and turn from it to him as our Saviour and Lord.  We require the new spiritual birth which the Holy Spirit gives.  Any who refuse God’s command and offer of life will suffer everlasting separation from him in hell.

Why is it necessary that we believe this?
Every person, no matter how moral and good, will fall short of God’s standard because of a sinful nature (we have all done things we regret).  Therefore being ‘good’ is not ‘good enough’.
Being religious doesn’t make us acceptable to God (many have tried that).  Acceptance comes through a ‘right relationship’ with Him.  This is achieved by confessing our sins, seeking to live according to God’s ways.
This is actually impossible humanly speaking, but God the Holy Spirit works in our lives so that we can become ‘new people’ and serve him.
Many reject God or want Him on their ‘terms’.  We can’t bargain or argue with God.  He has made a way for us to be forgiven.  If we reject this, we reject God.  Sadly, the alternative is an eternal hell without God.

Pause for thought

God doesn’t want religious people, He wants people right with Him, not just for now, but forever!

Useful Scriptures

Romans 3:23, Ephesians 2:1-22, Acts 20:21, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Revelation 20:11-15.

Tenet 3: The virgin birth, sinless life, atoning death, triumphant resurrection, ascension and abiding intercession of our Lord Jesus Christ: his second coming and millennial reign upon earth.

God’s eternal Son was born to Mary, a virgin, from whom he received his humanity.  Fully human, he was nonetheless without sin, having been conceived by the Holy Spirit.  Having lived with perfect holiness, he bore in his death the penalty of all others’ sin.  After God the Father raised him from death he returned in triumph to heaven where he represents his people.  He will come again to rule over the earth for a thousand years.

Why is it necessary that we believe this?
Jesus became human like us.  But if he had been born through the sexual union of a man and woman, he would have inherited the sin problem common to us all.  Therefore he needed to become human in a miraculous way.  This was accomplished by the creative power of the Holy Spirit causing new life within Mary, so that a child was born to a virgin.
Being born without sin was not enough.  Jesus, as he grew from childhood to a man, had to remain pure in his mind, attitude and his actions.  Even if he had failed once, everything would have been lost!
The whole point of a sinless birth and life was that he could be a perfect sacrifice when he died for us.  When he was crucified, all the sin ever committed was ‘laid’ on him (accounted to him) and Jesus was then punished for that sin (which was ours).  He then died taking the full consequences for our sin.
God the Father was satisfied with Jesus’ sacrifice and therefore, according to the Scriptures, Jesus rose from the dead, triumphing over it, as the first one to rise.  He rose with a new, eternal body which one day all Christians will possess.  One day, he will return to reign as King of Kings.

Pause for thought

Jesus did all this for you.  Just consider for a moment, how much he must love you.

Useful Scriptures

Matthew 1:18-25, Hebrews 2:9 ,1 Peter 2:21-24, Acts 2:29-32.

Tenet 4: The justification and sanctification of the believer through the finished work of Christ.

Through his life and death Jesus provided fully for our salvation.  When we trust in him as our Saviour we are completely forgiven and declared to be in right standing with God.  We are now set apart for God.  By the Holy Spirit’s power we can grow in the Christ-likeness God requires of us.

Why is it necessary that we believe this?
We could never in our own efforts make ourselves right with God; it is humanly impossible.  Many religions try to do this but all will fail.  It required that God did something which we couldn’t.  Jesus died for us, taking our sin upon himself.  When we believe this, God declares that we are forgiven and declared right with Him.
It is like a courtroom where someone pays the fine of the guilty person and the judge declares that since the crime has been paid for, the guilty person no longer has to face the consequences of the offence.
In addition to being declared ‘not guilty’ by God, he doesn’t leave us as being ‘just forgiven’, but calls us to be his people and live for him.  God is holy and pure and he requires that we also follow him in this way.  Not a ‘holier than thou’ attitude, but someone whose life reflects something of Jesus in every aspect.  The Holy Spirit helps us to do this.

Pause for thought

Imagine you were guilty of something and expecting to be condemned, but the one who was wronged says – “you are no longer guilty, but forgiven”.  That’s what God has done for us, and more.  He wants us to be set apart to serve him.  Instead of being guilty, we are forgiven and accepted into the family.

Useful Scriptures

Romans 3:21-24, 2Corinthians 3:17-18, Ephesians 4:23-24

Tenet 5: The baptism of the Holy Spirit for believers, with signs following.

God intends all Christians to know a definite experience of the presence and power of the Holy Spirit.  This baptism will result in clear evidences of the Spirit’s work.

Why is it necessary that we believe this?
When we read the Bible there are many instances recorded where people had a definite experience of being filled by the Holy Spirit.  This is how the church actually came into existence.
This continued right through the New Testament and there is no record of this ceasing.  As a result, even today, people still have similar experiences.  If people needed this baptism in Bible times, they still need it today.
This baptism is to give the individual a strength or power to live as a Christian and not for a novel/nice experience.
The signs could be ‘speaking in tongues’ –speaking in an ‘unknown language’, or maybe speaking a word of encouragement (prophecy) which is clearly inspired by God.

Pause for thought

The whole aspect of the baptism of the Holy Spirit has generated many debates in the church in general for centuries.  Some accept it, some deny it.  What is clear though is that often unexplained miraculous events occur when God moves in this way.  This is difficult to deny.  Also church movements which believe in this teaching are the fastest growing in the world today.

Useful Scriptures

Acts 2:1-47, Acts 10:44-48

Tenet 6: The nine gifts of the Holy Ghost for the edification, exhortation and comfort of the Church, which is the Body of Christ.

The Holy Spirit grants Christians supernatural abilities.  Their use helps to build up, encourage and strengthen the church, a people in living union with Christ.

Why is it necessary that we believe this?
As we have discussed earlier the Holy Spirit empowers people to serve.  Also he gives special gifts to help the Church.  These gifts are extraordinary in their outworking.  The early church in the Bible needed such gifts and today, we also need them to help us.

Pause for thought

Today’s society is extremely complex and often confusing.  The Church can be affected by many issues/situations which are potentially disrupting.  God does not leave us alone; he knows we need encouraging and when this happens, God can dynamically work in a situation by using the gifts he has given.

Useful Scriptures

1 Corinthians 12:4-11, 1 Corinthians 13:9-12

Tenet 7: The sacraments of baptism by immersion, and of the Lord’s Supper.

Jesus commanded that new believers be plunged in water to symbolise our sharing in the benefits of his saving work.  His death and resurrection are the permanent basis of Christian life.  Therefore he also ordained that he church should meet to remember him be eating bread and drinking wine as symbols of his body and blood.

Why is it necessary that we believe this?
Jesus himself was baptised not to repent of sin, but to identify himself with our humanity.  It was a significant moment in his life and it is the same for us.
God recognises that when we do an act it helps us to appreciate what the symbolic act means.  By being baptised, it helps us understand something of the ‘death’ of our old life and the resurrection of our new one in serving Christ.
Similarly, with communion, this meal helps us to focus regularly and consider what Jesus accomplished when he died for us.  It should be a special time of reflection and worship when we eat this meal.
Really no more need be said, other than Jesus told us to do it.

Pause for thought

In a hectic world full of deadlines and pressure, God has helped us to remember him by partaking in a meal.

Useful Scriptures

Matthew 28:19, 1 Corinthians 11:23-26, Romans 6:3-14

Tenet 8: The divine inspiration and authority of the Holy Scriptures.

The Bible, comprising the Old and New Testaments, is God’s Word to us.  The Holy Spirit created it by working with and through the human authors so that what they say, God says.  Therefore the Bible is absolutely authoritative for right belief and behaviour.

Why is it necessary that we believe this?
If we do not accept the Bible as God’s word, then we are reading and applying something which is man-inspired. As a result, at its best is flawed, at its worst is disastrous.
The mystery of the Bible is that it was written over thousands of years by many different people, often writing in complete isolation of each other.  But the Bible does not contradict itself, with prophecies made hundreds of years earlier being fulfilled.  This gives the Bible its credibility and authenticity.
The Bible is a complete manual for living.  What is especially relevant is that the Bible records people’s failures as well as their successes.  It shows that God deals with real people and meets them at their point of need, remaining a Lord of mercy at all time.

Pause for thought

The Bible is still a ‘best seller’ above all other books.  There must be ‘something’ in it to make it the most read book.

Useful Scriptures

2 Timothy 3:16, 2 Peter 1:20-21

Tenet 9: Church government by Apostles, Prophets, Evangelist, Pastors, Teachers, Elders and Deacons.

Church leadership is provided by men with varying God-given ministries.  They complement each other and together express Christ’s government of his church.

Why is it necessary that we believe this?
The Church is an organisation (a group of people with a common purpose).  Yet the church is unique because it comprises of God’s people, his church.  It has a spiritual dimension which no other group of people have.

As a result, a straight copy of management structures from secular society would not be suitable or competent to deal with the things of God.  Therefore, God has ‘gifted’ people in the church to lead it. These people are not ‘superhuman’ or promoted into positions, but God’s gift in them is recognised, nurtured and tested.  When the person is found suitable, they may be ‘set’ into their place of ministry (serving).

Pause for thought

If a church is run like a business with no spiritual awareness, then it would quickly become spiritually bankrupt.  The church is a ‘living group’ to serve God, with leaders who ‘help’ people in that function.

Useful Scriptures

Ephesians 4:11, 1 Timothy 3:1-13, Titus 1:5-11

Tenet 10: The possibility of falling from grace.

God is faithful and gracious to his people, earnestly desiring and providing for our salvation.  It is possible, however, for a Christian to forfeit salvation by a wilful failure to continue in faith and obedience.

Why is it necessary that we believe this?
Many people think they can do what they like when they have become Christians, because they are ‘saved’.  This is a mis-understanding of Scripture and an insult to God.
God has given us a free will.  He has not created us as robots.  Therefore we have a responsibility to follow God’s ways and serve him.
God has provided everything for us to follow him; his grace and the Holy Spirit, and he desires us to have a relationship with him.  But a relationship is always two-way.  If we fail and neglect God wilfully, there is a danger that we break our relationship with him.  This is the greatest tragedy.

Pause for thought

If you had a friendship with someone who deliberately broke it and refused to have anything to do with you, who constantly offended and ignored you, how would you feel?  I think God feels the same.

Useful Scriptures

1 Corinthians 10:12, 1 Timothy 1:19, Hebrews 3:12

Tenet 11: The obligatory nature of tithes and offerings.

It is our privilege and responsibility to give a tenth of our income to support God’s work.  Further giving should result from increased prosperity and as we are faced both by opportunities to spread the Gospel and the world’s need.

Why is it necessary that we believe this?
God has given us everything; life, health and strength – and even our finances.  People generally don’t like parting with money – to most, it is a precious limited resource.  God, in reality, is not seeking to get our money, but our obedience and if we are obedient in this aspect he has promised to bless us far more.  He can always ‘out-give’ us.
On a more ‘down-to-earth’ point, if people do not contribute financially to God’s church,
Who pays the Pastor’s wages?
Who pays for the church building?
Who pays for the maintenance of the building?
Who pays the bills?
Who helps out people in need?

Pause for thought

Sadly, some people want everything for nothing (or at least 20 pence in the offering).  God deserves far more, he has given us all we have in the first place.

Useful Scriptures

Malachi 3:10-12