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Iran: Faithful Witness Brings Hope

(Source: VOM Australia)

“Lord, if You are real, You need to tell me today,” said the young woman on the bus. “Otherwise I will walk in front of the bus and let it run over me.”

The woman, who lived in Iran, was going to have a baby. But she was not married and she saw no hope for her future.

New Life
A young man was on the same bus that day. He was reading a Bible, but he kept it covered so no one could see what he was reading. He feared he could be arrested for owning the Bible.

The man felt that the Lord was moving in his heart to talk to the young woman, even though he knew nothing about her. He wasn’t sure he would obey the Lord’s leading. But after a while, he took the cover off the Bible and went over to her. “The Lord loves you,” he told her. “I would like to share a Bible with you.”

The woman cried so loudly that she drew the attention of the other people on the bus. After talking to the man, she prayed with him and gave her life to the Lord, and then he gave her his Bible. Praise God for the man’s obedience to the Lord’s guidance!

[Photo: Iranian Christians at a secret worship service in a believer’s home.]


Message from a Christian in a Muslim Country

Iran

Brother X is a Christian who works in a Middle Eastern country where preaching the gospel is against the law. He was asked, “How do you feel knowing that people are praying for you?”

Brother X answered, “Living in a place that forbids Christian worship, or even discussion of the gospel, can be very frustrating. The most important thing to me is knowing that even though I may be alone physically, I am not alone spiritually!

“Each day as I face new challenges, I can be sure that my Christian brothers and sisters around the world are standing with me in prayer. As we face new and growing persecution, we can stand firm in our faith when we remember those who are cheering us on.

“Being far away from this country does not stop you from changing the nation. From where you are, you can be part of the most exciting missions work in history through your prayers. I invite you to become part of the greatest adventure in the history of man: bringing the gospel to unreached nations.”

(Source: Christians in Crisis)


What Would You Do?

Iran

Iran is a Muslim country where Christian activities are strictly controlled by the government. Christians meet secretly in house churches. In one church, the leaders gave every member seven Bibles when they left church on Sunday. They asked the Christians to give one Bible a day to someone who wasn’t a Christian.

But sharing the gospel with non-Christians is against the law in Iran. So the Christians risked getting arrested every time they shared a Bible.

To Think About
If you lived in Iran and your pastor gave you seven Bibles to share, what would you do? Would you want your parents to share Bibles with non-Christians if it meant that they might go to jail?

Bible verse: “But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: ‘We ought to obey God rather than men’” (Acts 5:29).

Parents and Teachers: You may want to give your children seven Christian pamphlets to share with others.

 


Internet Troll Finds Jesus

(From the Kids of Courage archives)

Amir was not a Christian, and he had a rude hobby. At his computer in Iran, he would get on the Internet and make comments that started arguments. “I was very pleased and happy with myself when I caused trouble and problems,” said Amir.

One day, he found a Christian website where visitors could post comments. “As usual, I started to mess up the discussion by typing silly things and insulting all the other commenters,” he said.

The administrator of the site answered Amir’s insults and replied, “No matter what you say, God still loves you, and there is a reason you are here tonight.”

“I began to listen,” said Amir. “Their love and respect touched my heart. Now I am taking online Christian classes. My life has changed. I practice kindness and gentleness every day.”

Source: Iran Alive Ministries, edited for space and clarity


What Happens Next?

Each year, The Voice of the Martyrs distributes more than 1 million Bibles in countries where Bibles are illegal or very hard to find. But what happens after the Bibles are in the hands of persecuted Christians?

Todd Nettleton of VOM Radio talked with Dr. Mike Ansari, who partners with VOM in sharing God’s Word with people in Iran. Read part of their conversation below. (Edited for length and clarity.)

Todd: Mike, I want to ask a question. There is a person in prison in Iran right now for distributing Bibles that Voice of the Martyrs bought. You helped us connect with this person. We provided the Bibles, you provided the connection; they provided the manpower to get the Bibles into the hands of Christians who needed them.

You and I are sitting comfortably right here [at VOM headquarters]; they are sitting in a jail cell. How do you personally process the fact that the work you are doing is going to put people in danger? It is going to put people in prison. How do you think about that? How do you pray about that?

Dr. Ansari: Todd, it is a bittersweet experience. You definitely do not want to put anybody in danger. But you have to realize that the individuals who have just become Christians, they are on fire for Jesus. Half the time they are just out there proclaiming the gospel to everybody.

This particular individual happened to be one of them who was and still is on fire for Jesus, even while she is incarcerated. She helped with distribution of Bibles that were funded by The Voice of the Martyrs to be sent into the country. Many people came to know about Jesus through her, and now she is serving her sentence.

There is a joy in her heart, even now that she is serving. She still sends messages indirectly to us that say, “I don’t regret anything. There is a joy in my heart and if I could do it again, I would do it.” In fact, in prison she is evangelizing others, as well.

Learn about VOM’s “A Bible for Every Believer” goal here.

Will you pray for those who risk their freedom when they distribute or smuggle Bibles?