It all began last year when God gave two men two different burdens.
“I just came out of the circuit breaker and was all ready to share and talk to people about this new project God has given to me,” explained Jason Wong, founder of national movements Yellow Ribbon Project and Dads for Life.
This initiative was One For Jesus (OFJ), a movement that seeks to encourage and equip Christians to share the good news of Jesus with at least one non-believer over the next 10 years.
Speaking at the launch event of OFJ earlier in December, Jason shared how shortly after, he received an invitation to attend a briefing by a group of young people who were going to start something themselves too.
That group consisted of Jia Hao and his team, who had recently been led by God to set up a creative agency.
Jia Hao said: “In every church, we have so many powerful testimonies of people encountering Christ.
“And in our present age, we can’t escape the fact that music and media are powerful tools to touch the present generation.”
Feeling that God had given him a mandate to harness the Church’s creativity to release the story of Jesus in a fresh and relevant way, Jia Hao and his co-founders decided to launch The Fireplace Collective.
“So as young people spend at least two and a half hours on social media every day… they (can also) consume media that are of the Holy Spirit (and be) discipled in the knowledge of Christ,” he said.
Unbeknown to Jia Hao, even before meeting with Jason, the latter already had plans to do a remix of Kurt Kaiser’s “Pass It On”.
“Two, three months before… God had put on my heart the ‘Pass It On’ song to revive it,” recounted Jason.
Sharing how God had led him to the theme song “Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree” when he was working on the Yellow Ribbon project, Jason sensed that God would again give him a song to represent the heart behind for the OFJ movement as well.
Within minutes of seeking the Lord, he was not only listening to “Pass It On”, but also reading up on its origins. Through this research, he found out that Kaiser wrote the song in front of a fireplace.
“So when Jia Hao mentioned that they were calling themselves The Fireplace Collective… I knew that I needed to commission Jia Hao to rewrite the song.”
PASSING ON A MISSION
It only takes a spark
To get a fire going
And soon all those around
Can warm up in its glowing
That’s how it is with God’s love
Once you experienced it
You spread His love to everyone
You want to pass it on
“The interesting thing was that when Kurt Kaiser actually got inspired for this song, it was because he was writing a musical to get youths more involved in church,” pointed out Jia Hao.
“But as he wrote out the whole musical, he saw that his songs were not too modern. And he needed to write a more modern version for his time to encourage young people to really serve the Lord.”
“So he took an old hymn called ‘Just As I Am’ and used it as a reference to write something modern.”
Hang on… doesn’t this sound familiar?
The similarity of what Kaiser did and what Jason had tasked him to do was not lost on Jia Hao too.
“It was as though the message of Jesus that was given to us, the mission and mandate 2,000 over years ago, had been passed from song to song, from generation to generation,” he mused.
“And finally (it’s our turn) to write this song to really mobilise, inspire and represent Christ in our time and age, to reach out to youths so that they will step out with the love of Jesus.”
PASSING ON A TESTIMONY
I believe Your heart is for every soul
I believe You’re seeking the prodigals
For I was lost but now found by Your great love
Now all I want to do is to pass it on
Besides having more punch and entirely new lyrics in some parts, another thing that distinguishes OFJ’s remix version of “Pass It On (I Believe)” from the original is the fact that it has been inspired by the testimony of local Christians Edison and Nancy.
That’s another amazing story in itself (you can catch the recent IG Live they did).
At just the tender age of four, Edison was diagnosed with cancer and had a lot of anger within him due to being in constant pain. So when his mother brought home friends to meet him, he drove them all away.
That was until he met Teacher Nancy. He somehow felt drawn to the older lady who had come to support his mother — so drawn he let her play with him.
As they were chatting, Teacher Nancy began sharing stories about Jesus with Edison to encourage him that he is not alone in his pain.
Edison became curious and asked her to show him Jesus’ face. Then a surprising thing happened.
She not only showed him Jesus’ face, but was also led by God to show him Jesus’ bloody and beaten body.
At the moment when Edison saw the image, he felt so touched by how Jesus took on this pain for Him — this was someone who understood his pain.
But that’s not all.
Pastor Norman Ng, who is part of OFJ’s core group, revealed that Edison went ahead to “pass it on” and share the gospel with a friend, who also came to know Jesus.
In the music video, you will see how it has visually retold Edison’s story with scenes of his life before and after he accepted Christ.
There are also shots of Edison and his friends playing with sparklers, symbolising how the tiny spark that Teacher Nancy ignited in Edison’s life led to others getting saved.
Even the lyrics that got penned in the remix reflect the hope that Edison felt from God in his brokenness.
I believe the broken shall rise again
I believe the hopeless will sing again
For I’ve received this love that has made me whole
Now all I want to do is to pass it on
PASSING ON A PROCLAMATION
While OFJ’s “Pass It On” is catchy, it ultimately has a bigger purpose than just entertainment.
“Don’t think of these songs like just the next new song,” said Pastor Norman who is also the Deputy Senior Pastor of 3:16 Church. “Think of it like an anthem for the church… an anthem that brings us all together.”
The fact that this song was renewed for this generation also reflects how OFJ hopes to re-ignite the state of evangelism in Singapore.
“There was a season where many people learned and sang the song. This happened in school, during campfire sessions for The Boys’ Brigade. But they never became Christian,” said Jason.
Sharing about how he felt that God was telling him to revive the song, Jason added with conviction: “This time when they sing it, they will accept Christ.’”
As I listened to this remix, I realised what truly makes it a fitting anthem is its final chorus:
I’ll shout it from the mountain top
I want the world to know
The Lord of love
Has come to me
I want to pass it on
The song serves as a rallying call that unites all who sing it with a bold proclamation: I, who have received God’s love, will openly share and pass on this love to the world.
Would you consider making this proclamation in your life today?
If your answer is “yes”, you’re encouraged to join the OFJ movement by making the 1/10 promise here.
Edison was Nancy’s One for Jesus. Who is your One?