It’s the Year of the Tiger this Chinese New Year. Did you know the tiger represents bravery in Chinese culture?

While we don’t believe in superstitions, it’s a good reminder to have bold faith and be courageous for Christ this year. 

The call to be bold is by no means an easy one: In a culture that is increasingly hostile towards the Christian worldview, I sometimes struggle with feelings of anxiety, doubt and fear.

Maybe you can relate. Nevertheless, I’m sharing the stories of five courageous characters in the Bible to inspire us with boldness.


A fundamental way to be brave? Remain faithful to God.

Daniel was someone who did this. He was at a high point in life, becoming so successful that the king wanted to set him over the whole kingdom. Jealous, other officials plotted against Daniel.

They manipulated the king into enacting a decree, which stated that prayer to anyone other than the king for the next 30 days would result in deadly punishment: Being thrown into the lion’s den. 

Nevertheless, Daniel boldly continued to openly pray to God. Are we able to be like Daniel, boldly standing by God when our lives are threatened? 

Daniel’s story reminds me of another story I read about an early Christian martyr, Vibia Perpetua

As Christians were severely persecuted in her time, Perpetua was arrested for being a believer. 

Her father visited her in prison and begged her to save herself by denying her faith. However, she replied: “Father do you see this vase here? Could it be called by any other name than what it is?”

Perpetua’s father said no. “Well, neither can I be called anything other than what I am, a Christian,” she affirmed.

Perpetua remained faithful till the end, and was executed as a result.

Unlike Daniel, Perpetua was not miraculously saved by God.

But both their stories made me realise we can be brave in the face of death not because God will rescue us – even Daniel didn’t know God would shut the lions’ mouths – but because a physical death is nothing compared to a spiritual one.


When staying faithful to God, we also have to stand by His truth. The brave prophet Jeremiah understood this, as he constantly spoke the truth to a rebellious and corrupted Israel. 

While false prophets lied that the people would see peace, Jeremiah warned them that God’s judgment was coming because of their sin.  

Instead of repenting, the people plotted against Jeremiah and threatened to kill him. They beat, ridiculed and imprisoned him for all he said. 

Despite these challenges, Jeremiah continued to bravely speak the truth – for some 40 years! 

As I reflect on society today, I realise it bears similarities to the environment Jeremiah lived in.

Biblical truth is shunned by many, and I see people who claim to be Christian preach falsehoods that appeal to secular worldviews.

I’ve also seen Christians who, having engaged with culture, were digitally harassed and had their private information leaked. Strangers even tried to get them fired from their jobs.

In such an environment, it’s easy to be intimidated into silence. But truth is truth, and we must boldly speak it in love.


Isaiah was another prophet who had great courage.

In Isaiah 6, God appeared before him and asked: “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”

Without hesitation, Isaiah replied: “Here am I. Send me!” (Isaiah 6:8).

From this short story, we see incredible courage. Isaiah didn’t ask God, “What will be the mission?” or say “Maybe there are others more capable than me, let me convince them to go”.

He recognised God wanted something to be done, and wholeheartedly volunteered his service to that end. 

That is what we should try to emulate: Rising to the occasion, being proactive and responding to God with willingness. Send me.

We can take the initiative today by looking at the areas in society where Christians need to be, and standing in that gap. 

Personally, I see a need for greater Christian influence in the media and arts scene, which is currently very secular. 

I knew going into this line of work wouldn’t be easy due to the different values I hold compared to most of the people in the industry.

But God gave me the courage to take the first step and join a media course in polytechnic.

Wherever God leads you to go, boldly go in obedience. If the mission is difficult, don’t be dismayed.

Instead, rejoice in the fact that you are privileged to serve the Creator and carry out His purpose!


You might know of how David faced Goliath. But do you know about the woman who faced David? 

Her name was Abigail, and she was the wife of Nabal who the Bible describes as “surly and mean” (1 Samuel 25:3).

This was definitely an accurate description; when David and his men politely sought provisions in return for the help they provided Nabal’s shepherds, Nabal replied them with insults. 

Whether it’s academic struggles, relationship issues or illness – we don’t have to be afraid because God is with us.

This angered David so much that he rallied his men to attack Nabal’s household. 

When Abigail heard about this, she quickly prepared many gifts and went out to meet David and his army. 

She fell before David and eloquently pleaded for him to show mercy to her husband. David was won over by Abigail, and changed his mind about vengeance. 

Just as Abigail wisely and bravely faced down her difficult situation, we also can courageously tackle trials in life. 

Whether it’s academic struggles, relationship issues or illness – we don’t have to be afraid because God is with us.


When talking about brave people in the Bible, we can’t forget the most important person – Jesus Christ

Towards the end of His life on earth, Jesus knew He was about to be betrayed and crucified. 

The Bible tells us He was deeply troubled over what was to come as He prayed: “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me” (Matthew 26:39).

Nevertheless, in that same verse we see Jesus tell God: “Yet not as I will, but as you will.” 

Jesus was courageous enough to completely surrender His life to God.

As a result, He made a way for all humanity to be saved.

At the end of the day, having courage is possible for everyone.

Being brave doesn’t mean we have no fears. It’s about choosing to act anyway, even when we are afraid.

But how can we make this difficult choice? Beyond biblical examples that encourage us, pray for God’s help.

That was what the disciples did in Acts 4. Their prayers were answered as “they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly” (Acts 4:31).

From this year on, let’s be intentional in turning to God and His word – that we may be bold and brave in everything we do for Him!

  1. Which of these Bible characters inspired you the most and why?
  2. What is one area in your life that you need courage for?
  3. Pray to God. Ask Him to be your guide and source of confidence.