April 18, 2022

Islamic Theocracy Fuels Iranians’ Interest in Gospel

A married couple walking along a shore is stopped and interrogated by police asking for proof of their marriage. Elsewhere, citizens guard their words when critiquing the government.

That’s life in the Islamic theocracy of Iran, at least since the Iranian revolution of 1979. Here, elements of democracy are pitted against the ultimate authority residing in an autocratic “Supreme Leader.” Human rights are routinely suppressed, especially for women and children.

Ironically, a theocracy designed to enforce Islam is leading to widespread disillusionment with Islam itself. As a result, more people in Iran reject the faith and turn to other religions and worldviews.

Today, more than a million of Iran’s 83 million people are followers of Jesus, say estimates from the Group for Analyzing and Measuring Attitudes in Iran. 

Siamak is a prime example of these changes. After his brother, Farhad, became a believer, he mocked him for turning from Islam. But during the COVID pandemic, Siamak began to think about one common belief held by both Muslims and Christians: the return of Jesus.

Siamak’s search for religious truth inspired a search for Jesus that led him to surrender his life to Christ and baptize five other Iranian Christians who had a similar spiritual journey.

The road ahead will be difficult for these new Iranian believers. Persecution for turning from Islam is common and severe. But God’s plan for the expansion of His kingdom has never been an easy one.

Pray for more Iranian Muslims to see the limitations of Islamic theocracy and to yearn to know God.

  • Ask Jesus to reveal Himself to the millions of Iranians who do not know Him. May they see that He is their only hope (John 14:6).
  • Ask the Holy Spirit to strengthen and encourage the persecuted church (2 Cor. 12:9-10).

 

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