Iranian Christians are requesting prayer for their country following a series of arrests just as the government released some prisoners in an effort to appear more liberal.
At least 20 Christians, mainly from Muslim backgrounds, were detained in Tehran, Karaj, Isfahan, and Tabriz. As a sign that he is politically progressive, the government of incoming President Hassan Rouhani pardoned and then released 11 prisoners of conscience from prison on 20 September.
The next day, the family of imprisoned Pastor Behnam Irani went to meet with a judge in Karaj, Iran. Pastor Behnam’s family asked the judge to pardon him and allow him to be released like the other prisoners of conscience. The judge denied the request, and stated that Behnam had to serve his six years of prison and that the only way he would be pardoned and released from prison was if he repented and returned to Islam.
Sources: Voice of the Martyrs USA and Mohabat News
- Thank the Lord for the recent release of 11 prisoners. Pray the Lord will protect and sustain those who remain in jail, especially Behnam Irani who is suffering from poor health.
- Praise God for the growth of the church in Iran. Pray He will use these incidents of persecution to further spread the Gospel and strengthen the faith of His children.
- Pray for President Hassan Rouhani and all those in authority in Iran.