It seems there is a Daniel for every kind of Christian. Well, that's what our Christian culture has created. Sometimes we as believers miss the point of what this book is all about. This Old Testament book seems to give us lots of variety to encourage us to read, ground us in thinking about eternity, and apply it practically. Daniel can be a prophetic book for those who are end-time speculators. For some (especially kids) the popular "Daniel and the lions den" comes to mind. We are challenged to "dare" like Daniel and rise above the crisis. And for some it became the famous (or infamous) dietary plan.
Whatever it might be, for better or worse, we should not forget how Daniel fit to the redemptive narrative of the Bible. Most importantly, the God of Daniel should be the highlight of the book. Do the examples I listed in anyway downgrade the God of the Bible? I don't think so, but there is still something missing. Can we focus solely on God Himself rather than how He can be useful to certain individual Christian?
In Brave By Faith, Alistair Begg explores the book of Daniel and introduces us to the God that lifted up Daniel. As He lifted up Daniel, He also lifted up those in the Babylonian culture that challenged his faith. As believers living in a post-Christian culture, we can be encouraged like Daniel. Begg's assuring words and biblical lessons are simple yet much needed for Christians who want to make sense and stand out in a sometimes hostile culture.
You might find some of Begg's points to be the usual inspirational stuff. At first it feels like the usual spiritual encouragement you might have read in other books. However, as you continue to read Begg will give you clarity on who you are as a child of God and how powerful God can be despite tides rising against your faith. The part when Begg turns the discussion to discipleship and evangelism became the turning point of the book. This call into action is definitely a winner in this book.
As you go further reading the book, its gets better and better. To add to that, it gets more insightful. Begg unearths treasures of biblical truths. Chapter 5, for instance, is geared for Christian workers, especially those who work for the government (like me). This theme then carries over to chapter 6, which dwells on judgement.
Inevitably, Begg discusses Daniel and the lions den, wrapping up with more than a heroic story but story of the gospel. He points out themes like redemption, resurrection and judgement while still grounded on how Christians should live and die for a culture that is hostile towards the faith. This is also one of the highlights of the book.
Begg finishes strong dipping a bit on eschatology and carrying it over the epilogue with stories that will drive deep in our hearts. Jesus reigns. The battle has already been won. God wins. That is enough for us stand and continue in this post-Christian culture. The book dig a few contemporary issues that challenge Christians, and is big on biblical encouragement.
Brave By Faith is accessible and clear in equipping Christians to stand for their faith without being overly spiritual or hateful against the surrounding culture. Begg elaborates biblical truths that Christians badly need.
5 out of 5
(Review copy of the book was provided by The Good Book Company)
If you want to read quotes from the book or information on how to purchase the book, kindly click this link.