A friend and reader of this blog sent me a link to a very interesting blog by Joel Richardson on the rise of Christianity in Iran. This inspired me to look into the spread of Christianity in the Muslim world. What I found is amazing and needs to be shared with as many Christians as possible.
Every day there is a call from both liberals and conservatives in our government to have a preemptive strike on the nation of Iran. The Iranian threat is such that the very security of the world depends on Iran not having nuclear weapons. Both Jewish Zionist and Christian Zionist are calling for war on Iran.
What I found in my quick research of what may be the most important story of the day and is being downplayed in America-- Iran is experiencing a revival of the Christian faith. This may be the largest revival that may be only rivaled by the Chinese. A longtime missionary to Iran says that “the rate of growth of Christianity in Iran is unprecedented for a Muslim country, especially for Iran. We’ll hear that in a certain city there are 200 house churches, whereas there were none before.”
As Muslims are told of Jesus Christ they become attracted to Christianity. Jesus Christ becomes everything they have longed to experience in their religion—a personal relationship with a God that loves them. They have never experienced forgiveness, the assurance of salvation, and the personal relationship with the Savior. They have longed for a living God rather than a religion that has given them an empty life. Persecution against Christians who have converted from Islam has only increased the number of converts to Jesus Christ.
The church in Iran has been isolated from the rest of the Christian community. Today they are connected with the outside world through the Internet. The church in Iran has grown from a few hundred to several hundred thousand. Iran still remains one of the worst places in the world for a Christian to live their faith. Christians do not have the same rights of Islamic citizens. Christians are arrested, interrogated, tortured, and killed for their faith in Jesus Christ.
"Muslims are also coming to Christ in record numbers, over a million Muslims in Iran alone in the last 15 years." - Joel Rosenberg, author and political advisor to former Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu affirmed this on the CNN Glen Beck program on 04/27/07. Five years later how many more have converted?
With that said, why would I, as a Christian, encourage my government to make war on over a million Christians? We have not been called to war against the Body of Christ. “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” Eph. 6:12
This is not about the right or wrong of war, this about Christians supporting the killing of Christians. As Americans we often forget that there are Christians in countries like Iran, Iraq, China, Russia, and Egypt. It is so easy to forget that there are those who have remain faithful to the cause of Jesus Christ and are witnesses to the changing power of the Gospel. Have we as the American Christian forgotten that we are supporting the killing of fellow brother and sisters when we support the war on countries like Iran? It is hard to determine the terrorist from the Christian when bombs are being dropped at thousands of feet above the target.
Look at how we have been drawn into an activity that is contrary to all Christian principles. The leaders who are pushing these wars are from both political parties and from the Christian Zionist who are part of the Christian Right. The warmongers are amoral, unethical, deceitful, and manipulative. These people are without social and legal standards they have no remorse, they are without love or concern to human suffering. To put it mildly they are psychopaths set on global conquest and dominance. As Christians we cannot allow these warmongers to draw Christians into wars that take the live of other Christians. We cannot allow them to make war on a country without making them aware of killing our brothers and sisters in Christ without speaking out against their actions.
Does this mean that I am not concerned about the evil that countries like Iran, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, India, Pakistan, China, North Korea, Egypt and Israel perpetrate upon their citizens who are Christians? No, I am concerned about the evil these countries carry out against our brothers and sisters in Christ. It is wrong and we as Christian should not support the evil actions of those who would use us to support their global domination.
There is no doubt that some evangelical Christians have been caught up in the political struggle within our country. Among some evangelicals who are part of the Christian Right there is the theological belief that we must bring about a change in the world before the LORD returns. What is the most disturbing part of this theological belief is that Christians have become partners with the evil global domination leaders and have given their support to covert wars, preemptive strikes and a disregard for human life. All this has been wrapped in a cloak of Patriotism. We are told we are protecting our Christian roots and freedom. I believe in protecting our freedom, I believe it is important to be involved in our government and community to bring about a better place to live and worship but not at the cost of taking the lives of Christians in countries we have declared to be enemies of freedom.
We cannot allow our patriotism to come before our principles of Christianity by supporting the killing of Christians. The next time someone who say we need to bomb Iran, remind them that there are Christians living in Iran and there are Muslims who are converting daily to the message of God’s love.
It is better that we learn to live in peace and that no lives are lost, than to be in a constant state of war and lose both peace and life.