David Cameron has spoken of the peace Jesus brought to the world in a faith-inspired Christmas message.
The Prime Minister quoted from the Gospel of John as he asked people to remember the sacrifices of UK troops and the emergency services.
2012 has been an "extraordinary" year, he said, as he reflected on the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the successful Olympic and ParalympicGames.
After praising the achievements of the year, the Prime Minister turned to the meaning of the season.
"Christmas also gives us the opportunity to remember the Christmas story - the story about the birth of Jesus Christ and the hope that he brings to the countless millions who follow him," he said.
He continued: "The Gospel of John tells us that in this man was life, and that his life was the light of all mankind, and that he came with grace, truth and love. Indeed, God's word reminds us that Jesus was the Prince of Peace.
"With that in mind, I would like to pay particular tribute to our brave servicemen and women who are overseas helping bring safety and security to all of us at home, their families who cannot be with them over the holidays, and to all the dedicated men and women in the emergency services who are working hard to support those in need."
Mr Cameron has previously admitted to being a "vaguely practising" Christian and has received strong criticism from Christians this year over his position on gay marriage.
He concluded his Christmas message by wishing everyone a peaceful season.
"However you celebrate this time of year, it is my hope and prayer that you have a happy and peaceful Christmas."