Pastor told to deny Christ, or stay in prison

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

By Joseph DeCaro, Worthy News Correspondent

iran-christianTEHRAN, IRAN (Worthy News)-- An American pastor sentenced to eight years in an Iranian prison for planting house churches in the Islamic Republic a decade ago recently wrote that prison officials have told him to either deny Christ, or remain incarcerated indefinitely, according to the Christian News Network.

The letter from Pastor Saeed Abedini was released by the American Center for Law and Justice.

According to Abedini's letter, officials told him to deny his faith in Jesus Christ and return to Islam, or remain in Evin Prison even after his eight year sentence is over.

Abedini's response was Romans 8:35-39:

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

"As it is written, ‘For Thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.’ Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."

The ACLJ reported that despite his lack of strength, Abedini’s faith is keeping him alive.

Abedini, who resided in Idaho with his wife and children, was visiting Iran last year to build an orphanage when he was unexpectedly arrested by Iranian officials for establishing a network of house churches that would entice Iranian youth away from Islam to Christianity.

The ACLJ requests Christians to send encouragement for Abedini at