Has Iran taken on a fight that it can never win?
Evidence suggests that might be the case, as the internationally renowned American Center for Law and Justice points out that the Islamic regime now is becoming desperate to extinguish a surging population of Christians inside its borders.
Iran, after all, is a nation that has exported terrorism for decades. It has the free world worried about its nuclear-weapons program. It routinely threatens to destroy Israel. It interferes with Middle East conflicts and engages in cyberwar against the West.
But the American Center for Law and Justice reports Christianity “has ignited like a flame across the country of Iran, making the Iranian government so nervous they’re desperate to extinguish it quickly.”
Iranians are converting to Christianity at a record-setting pace, with an estimated 360,000 to 800,000 Christians in the country.
There were fewer than 500 back in the 1980s.
“It’s difficult to take an accurate census because fears of retribution, arrest, and violence keep many Christian converts from self-identifying. Iranian authorities have been raiding the homes of suspected Christians, confiscating their books, computers, and other media and arresting the men,” ACLJ said.
The government has spent millions of dollars to fight the growing interest in Christianity, the mission group Elam Ministries told Mohabat News, a website that reports on Christians in Iran.
The money has gone toward Islamic propaganda, jailing church members, confiscation of Christian materials and more, the report said.
Ayatollah Alavi Boroujerdi, an official at an Islamic seminary, has confirmed that “youth are becoming Christians in Qom and attending house churches.”
Christians are being forced to hide their faith to protect themselves and their families, because worshipping Jesus “will get you arrested, and very possibly get you killed,” a critic reported.
“This is something we at the ACLJ have witnessed first hand, advocating for a number of imprisoned Christians pastors in Iran – including Youcef Nadarkhani, who we successfully fought to free from multiple false imprisonments for his faith. In each of these cases, Iran has targeted pastors in an attempt to squelch the Christian church. It has failed each and every time. In fact, the attempts to silence the church has only made it louder as Christianity grows in Iran,” ACLJ said.
“The people are tired of living under tyranny and grow desperate for change. Early this year the citizens took to the streets in protest all over Iran chanting cries such as ‘we don’t want an Islamic republic’ and ‘we are getting poor and clerics are driving fancy cars.'”
ACLJ noted Iran’s government “is racing to acquire nuclear weapons, as it profiteers from sanctions relief courtesy of Obama’s heinous Iran deal – the same deal the Obama deep state wanted to protect so badly, they refused to prosecute Hezbollah terrorists.”
Mohabat News has reported extensively on Iran’s imprisonment of Christians, even for praying in their own homes.
“Church leaders believe that millions can be added to the church in the next few years – such as the spiritual hunger that exists and the disillusionment with the Islamic regime,” the news service said. “If we remain faithful to our calling, our conviction is that it is possible to see the nation transformed within our lifetime. Because Iran is a strategic gateway nation, the growing church in Iran will impact Muslim nations across the Islamic world.”
The government is not engaged in halfway measures.
Last Christmas Eve, authorities raided a house church service, and five men disappeared. They were identified as a Mr. Hosseini, Ahmad Bazyar, Faegheh Nasrollahi, Mastaneh Restegari and Amir-Hossein Ne’matallahi.
There’s no word on whether they are dead or alive.
Iran’s ruling ayatollahs are publicly expressing their worries about the growth of Christianity, and the report said their efforts appear to be ineffective.
“Despite the government’s concerted efforts to the contrary, Christianity continues to grow,” Mohabat reported.