Blessed Advent 2017


What about Christmas that it is marked as a time of joy? Some said it’s not the presents, but His presence. Who is He and why is it so? “He” is Jesus Christ, whom the Bible identified as the Son of God and was born on earth as a baby on that first Christmas. The Bible records the fulfillment of the prophesied Saviour in Him as the One who would later die as a sacrifice for the sins of the world. Christmas to Christians is therefore a looking back at that momentous time when it heralded the birth of the Saviour of the world.

Dr James A. Francis (1864–1928) summarized the impact made by the life of Christ in what is later commonly entitled as “One Solitary Life”:[1]

Let us turn now to the story. A child is born in an obscure village. He is brought up in another obscure village. He works in a carpenter shop until he is thirty, and then for three brief years is an itinerant preacher, proclaiming a message and living a life. He never writes a book. He never holds an office. He never raises an army. He never has a family of his own. He never owns a home. He never goes to college. He never travels two hundred miles from the place where he was born. He gathers a little group of friends about him and teaches them his way of life. While still a young man, the tide of popular feeling turns against him. One denies him; another betrays him. He is turned over to his enemies. He goes through the mockery of a trial; he is nailed to a cross between two thieves, and when dead is laid in a borrowed grave by the kindness of a friend.

Those are the facts of his human life. He rises from the dead. Today we look back across nineteen hundred years and ask, What kind of trail has he left across the centuries? When we try to sum up his influence, all the armies that ever marched, all the parliaments that ever sat, all the kings that ever reigned are absolutely picayune in their influence on mankind compared with that of this one solitary life…

For a fuller treatment of who Jesus is and what Christmas means to those who follow Christ, read “The Reason for the Season,” by Dr Lim Poh Ann.


  1. Francis, James Allan. “Arise Sir Knight!” in The Real Jesus and Other Sermons. Philadephia: Judson Press, 1926, 123-4. Quoted in Graham Pockett, “One Solitary Life.”


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