In response to a year of persecution and the imminent passing of a law making the death sentence mandatory for all Muslim men who turn to Christ and life imprsonment for Muslim women who turn to Christ, Iranian church leaders are calling for prayer and fasting from November 21 – 23, 2008.
They know they have no influence in the courts of men – but they want to take their case to the courts of heaven.
And like Esther of old, the queen of Iran who told Mordecai to ask all the people of God to pray and fast for three days, so Iranian Christian leaders are asking the world-wide church to also set aside these three days for prayer and fasting.
If you are a prayer leader in your church, please contact other intercessors to be involved in these three days, and please approach your pastor to see if special prayers for Iran can be made at your church service on Sunday November 23.
2008: YEAR OF INTIMIDATION FOR CHRISTIANS IN IRAN
The growing church in Iran is under attack. Since April there have been at least fifty three arrests of people whose only crime is their faith in Jesus Christ. The arrests are not localised, but have happened in all of Iran’s major cities…Tehran, Mashhad, Isfahan, Shiraz, Kerman, and elsewhere. Sometimes people have been released the same day, others spent months in prison, some still remain behind bars. Many of them have had to pay exorbitant fees for bail and face frightening court cases. Some have suffered physically while in detention and it is believed that one elderly couple died as a result of being beaten up. These are only the arrests that get reported: it is likely there have been many more.
All of this has been happening against the ominous background of legislation going through the Iranian parliament that will make the death sentence mandatory for any man who leaves Islam and chooses another faith. Women will face life imprisonment for the same ‘crime’. Click here to read more about this legislation.
Despite the persecution, the church in Iran continues to grow rapidly. The Word of God is reaching many in the country and many believers are determined to courageously share Christ with their countrymen. Christian leaders in Iran believe that the church will continue to grow very rapidly in the next five to ten years, such is the openness of Iranians to the Gospel.
We urge Christians world wide to pray and fast on behalf of the church in Iran.
Pray for all those who have been arrested and intimidated. Pray that the Lord will be their Rock, Deliverer and Shield. (Psalm 18:2)
Pray that despite the persecution, Christians will be “encouraged to speak the Word of God more courageously and fearlessly.” (Phil 1:14)
Pray against the law of apostasy. Pray that the severe mandatory punishments regarding apostasy in Iran’s new penal code will not enter the statute book. Pray that many millions of Muslims will see the evil of this law and will hunger for spiritual truth and salvation.
Click here for more details about persecution in Iran in 2008.
Thanks you for praying for Iran.