Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Pastor Yousef Nadarkhani to be hanged in Iran - for converting to Christianity

It really is quite incredible. Last week, a convicted murderer, Troy Davis, was finally executed in the United States, and it seemed as though the entire British (and EU) Establishment arose to denounce the barbarism. Even Pope Benedict XVI appealed for clemency.

Yet today, Iran is scheduled to hang a Christian pastor for 'apostasy', and the collective silence from our scurvy politicians, trappist churchmen and hypocritical media is positively deafening.

Pastor Yousef Nadarkhani was found guilty two years ago of 'apostasy', even though he was never a practising Muslim. His guilt was determined because he 'has Muslim ancestry' (which is a kind of convenient catch-all in a place like Iran), and he was sentenced to death. That sentence may be suspended if he renounce his faith. This week, in court, he has twice refused to recant. A third refusal today will result in his execution.

His Grace knows a thing or two about recanting and the inevitable consequences of recanting the recantation. There is no greater torture of the soul. Yousef Nadarkhani is bound upon a wheel of fire, knowing in his heart that he is faithful to his Lord and Saviour, and yet every fibre of his flesh will be screaming to declare that there is no god except Allah and Muhammad is a messenger of Allah.

As the years of imprisonment, torture and solitary confinement have failed to break this man's faith, the Iranian authorities have tried to use his family against him. A year ago, Fatemah Pasindedih, his wife, was found guilty of apostasy. Her conviction was overturned on appeal, but the effects of all this trauma upon their two sons is unimaginable.

It is important to note that there is no Iranian criminal statute which requires the automatic execution of those who abandon Islam. The judges in this case appear to be relying on Article 8 of 'olvasileh-Tahrir' - a fatwa issued by the late Ayatollah Khomeini, leader of the 1979 revolution, and also on edicts issued by Ayatollah Shirazi, one of Iran's present leaders. These appear to be based upon Shi'ite interpretations of the Qur'an and Hadith, and are in contravention of the international covenants to which Iran is a signatory, including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which guarantees freedom of religion and freedom to change one’s religion. They also violate article 23 of the Iranian Constitution, which states that no-one should be 'molested' or 'taken to task' simply for holding a certain belief.

Iran has ancient Armenian and Assyrian churches, but Pastor Nadarkhani's problem is that he is an Evangelical: he led a successful and growing 'house church' of some 400 souls. In Iran, Evangelicals are viewed as being 'corrupt and deviant', not least because they 'spread'.

Of course, Pastor Nadarkhani is just one of thousands who face persecution for their religious beliefs in Iran, including leaders of the Baha’i community who are presently serving 20 years for practising their faith, and hundreds of Sufi Muslims who have been flogged in public.

But this story does not involve 'apartheid Israel' or the 'barbaric United States'. It is simply about one Christian in Iran who wants to worship God in spirit and in truth, in accordance with the Gospel of Christ. The British media won't care much for that. So thank God for the blogs who can point you in the direction of the Iranian Embassy (or via here). Please make your protests known. Perhaps a word of support from the Foreign Secretary? Or is he too busy condemning Israel? The Prime Minister? Too preoccupied with planning? The Archbishop of Canterbury, perhaps? O, forget it.


Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

Your Grace

As long as you are here to state the case then we christians have some succour and your comforting words for him and his family state we are here in spiritual brotherhood in prayer and hope.

"Perhaps a word of support from the Foreign Secretary? Or is he too busy condemning Israel? The Prime Minister? Too preoccupied with planning? The Archbishop of Canterbury, perhaps? O, forget it."
Absolutely pointless, aren't they!

Let's keep fighting the good fight. Bless you, old boy.

E S Blofeld

28 September 2011 at 15:09  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

Although we should, by now, be unsurprised when Muslims obey the malevolent teachings of Allah, every new story of persecution still takes the breath away.

28 September 2011 at 15:28  
Blogger Stewart Cowan said...

I've just phoned the Iranian Embassy and spoken to a cheery Iranian who hopes and believes that the pastor won't be killed.

The Embassy switchboard no. is 0207 225 3000. I just said I'm phoning about the pastor and they knew who I meant and transferred me.

Go for it!

28 September 2011 at 16:23  
Blogger Change for Burma! said...

Next 24 hours critical to stop the execution of Pastor Yousef Nadarkhani - Email the Iranian Embassy #Nadarkhani

28 September 2011 at 16:25  
Blogger Atlas shrugged said...

My advice for this chap would be to recant ASAP.

For the truth is in the heart, not in the mouth, thank the almighty, therefore I feel sure he will be forgiven, as so should he.

Dying for ones religion, political ideology, or country is as crazy as the most crazy Muslim, and should be avoided, especially when the welfare of children is to be considered.

28 September 2011 at 16:33  
Blogger Atlas shrugged said...

Please note

It says, do not bare false witness, it does not say, do not lie.

28 September 2011 at 16:36  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

It's hot on the heals of the three hanged for being gay recently. I agree it's not too great when newspapers, blogs, and so on don't make a fuss about it. Bloody religious mentalists they are over there.

28 September 2011 at 16:58  
Blogger Oswin said...

Stewart Cowan : well done! I shall follow your lead too.

28 September 2011 at 17:25  
Blogger len said...

Truly appalling but not so surprising that Islam the so called 'religion of peace'uses fear, threats,and executions to keep those entrapped within it in bondage.

Christ came to set the captives free and Islam shows its true intentions (and its author) by death threats to those within and without its clutches.

Jesus Christ came that we might have life but Islam seems to me to be the very opposite of Christianity.

28 September 2011 at 17:46  
Blogger Daddy said...

I have shared with The Salvation Army's senior leaders, and emailed the Iranian Ambassador, since the embassy is now closed. is the address.

I am sure the Lord will take care of the Pastor's family if he is martyred, but particularly for me, the picture of him with his son is rather poignant. Saying our piece is the least we can do.

Thank you for bringing this to our attention, YG.

28 September 2011 at 18:11  
Blogger Mr Integrity said...

You can't deny Christ just to save your life.

28 September 2011 at 18:13  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Your Grace

Islam show’s it sub-humanity once again. The West is going to have to face up to these nuclear tipped madmen sooner or later, so why not now. An immediate trade embargo should do it.

The Inspector agrees with the futility of approaching Williams. He’s no courageous Christian. Besides, he wouldn’t want to upset the Muslim friends he’s made in this country.

28 September 2011 at 18:24  
Blogger IanCad said...

Thanks for bringing this up. I have emailed my local MP and the AofC
Will call the Iranian Embassy tomorrow.
May our prayers uplift this brave man.

28 September 2011 at 18:57  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

I wrote to my MP along with thousands of others. Tonight at my assembly, on this first day of Rosh Hashana, I want to remember Pastor Yousef Nardakhani among my prayers. I should also beg the Almighty to keep me from anger and hatred.

28 September 2011 at 19:20  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Have just petitioned AoC and Iran Embassy

If an Edwardian like me can manage to that with his contraption, we all can...

28 September 2011 at 19:37  
Blogger Caroline Gurney said...

I've just emailed the Iranian Embassy from the CSW site. As well as the points re Iranian and international law, I asked them how they would feel if the situation was reversed and a Muslim was to face execution here because he came from a Christian background. I also made the point that, if Islam is the true religion, Allah, as the all powerful one, will ensure its spread and survival without any need for violence, and that forcing people to be Muslims on pain of death is actually therefore an insult to Allah. I am a Christian and do not believe that Islam is true, but I thought I'd try to address them in terms of their own beliefs and logic.

28 September 2011 at 19:51  
Blogger The Gray Monk said...

I think a letter to the Grauniad "noting the total lack of coverage of the media of the martyrdom of a Christian in a Muslim state" would be in order. It won't do anything except fuel the socialist/atheist argument that religion should be outlawed, but it will raise awareness.

All Christians should pray for our brothers and sisters who suffer daily discrimination and persecution in all Muslim lands while our current crop of "liberal" leaders grant ever more "rights" to Muslims in the UK, no doubt preparing for the day Islam proclaims itself the national religion and imposes dhimmitude on all non-Muslims.

That will be an interesting "advance" for the Guardianistas.

28 September 2011 at 20:09  
Blogger Homeschool on the Croft said...

In Scotland, it was said that the blood of the (Covenanters') blood was the seed of the church of Christ. Recanting is not the answer - hard as it is for us to see good coming out of martyrdom for Christ's sake, God sees the end from the beginning.
Well done to all of you who called or emailed the Iranian embassy. I'd never have thought of it, but off to do it now...

You are so right to point out to screaming silence of our leaders. They are but wimps, at best.

May God uphold this man of God. 'Blessed are they who die in the Lord'. Our prayers are with his wife and children. We take them to their Heavenly Father, who can take better care of them than we ever could.

28 September 2011 at 20:20  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

That Gray Monk, yes you sir. The Inspector lives downstream from you in the Roman city. If you fancy a pint in the oldest pub where you live, do indicate !

28 September 2011 at 21:07  
Blogger Maggie said...

Your Grace,
Thank you for speaking out against the execution of this Pastor.
I assume you are related to Archbishop Cramner in the time of Henry VIII. A man of my mother's ancestral name, Sir Gregory Butolf(Buttolph) was drawn and quartered by Henry for conspiring with the Pope to dethrone Henry when he took over the Church.
I am writing a series of historical fiction, based on this family and original records, to unearth history because we are so incredibly ignorant of our past here in the states, and ready to give our country away to whomever makes the grandest speech. Jesus Christ is so clearly in our history and there are those who will go to any length to hide this fact, and so many do the same out of ignorance.
I hope to capture the imagination of many to understand their history, and delve into their own history, to find the reality of Jesus Christ in our lives today, and to defend our ability to share the gospel freely.
God bless you!

28 September 2011 at 21:07  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

The recently published twelve principles for witnessing Christ ‘in a manner consistent with the Gospel’ include ‘rejecting any form of violence’, which would seem to put Christianity at a disadvantage vis-à-vis Islam:

[9:111] Allah has purchased of the faithful their lives and worldly goods and in return has promised them the Garden [Paradise]. They will fight for His cause, slay, and be slain. Such is the true pledge which He has made them in the Torah, the Gospel and the Qur’an.

28 September 2011 at 21:14  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Worse than than the Nazis, so they are, Mr Rottenborough

28 September 2011 at 21:19  
Blogger uk Fred said...

E-mailed my loval MP (Talking Horse Spheroids) and Iranian Ambassador.

Thanks for the heads-up

28 September 2011 at 21:36  
Blogger Flossie said...

There is an email form for contacting the Iranian Embassy here:

28 September 2011 at 22:48  
Blogger spammer said...

Well Ien i do not agree with irans policies and specially not with this excecution. However i do not think the islamic teachings should be shunned and the muslims spat on because of one country's/ a few mens rules. You really should learn to respect other peoples religion and the teachings of Jesus are followed by the muslims as well since they do believe he was a prophet of God

28 September 2011 at 23:29  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

May God protect and comfort this man and his family in their darkest hour.

28 September 2011 at 23:46  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

Spammer the Yammer made us laugh 28 September 2011 23:29

"and the teachings of Jesus are followed by the muslims as well since they do believe he was a prophet of God"

Like Matthew 5:39
But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.


The Qur'an says: "Fight and slay the pagans [Christians] wherever ye find them and seize them, confine them, and lie in wait for them in every place of ambush" (Surah 9:5)

Yeah..RIGHT! Looks like they did not quite understand what Jesus meant (It seems then that their prophet failed to profit from the Words of Jesus) or they fail to understand anything except violence towards others who are non muslim, eh?

Take it you are an admirer of a canned meat product consisting primarily of chopped pork pressed into a loaf (oops Ad Placement). It shows, you meathead and that you are a filling short of a sandwich!

Ernst S Blofeld, ta ta Jabberer!

28 September 2011 at 23:56  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

ps Jabberer

The Qur'an says 9:29 "Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the last day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and his apostle (pure unadulterated gibberish!*giggle*) nor acknowledge the religion of truth of the people of the Book (the Jews and the Christians) until they pay the Jizya [tax on non-Muslims] with willing submission and feel themselves subdued."
What splendid chaps Allah and his apostle are, what on earth have we got to fear!

"i do not think the islamic teachings should be shunned "
Why we shun them, boy. Do keep up!

Ernst Blofeld

29 September 2011 at 00:06  
Blogger Jonathan Hunt said...

William Hague has issued a statement:

29 September 2011 at 00:19  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

For DanJo and others, If His Grace will allow.

The make-up of modern Britain: 70% of us claim to be Christians... and only 1.5% are gay!

The Office for National Statistics’ new Integrated Household Survey, which collects the views of 420,000 people, found that 69 per cent of people in Britain said they were Christian.

The Integrated Household Survey was put together from five ONS surveys which asked the same ‘core questions’ over a year.

Read more:

Brilliant! Now off to bed with a big smile on my face. HeHeHe

Ernsty Blofeld

29 September 2011 at 01:41  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

*insert usual reply here and roll eyes*

29 September 2011 at 05:45  
Blogger G. Tingey said...

Just like all the other religions then:

Kill the different believers
Kill the unbelieverss
Kill the heretics

29 September 2011 at 08:01  
Blogger Tim Chesterton said...

I have just emailed the Iranian Embassy here in Canada, in case any other Canadians are reading this, the email address is, and the Chargé d'Affaires and Head of Mission is Mr. Kambiz Sheikh-Hassani.

29 September 2011 at 09:19  
Blogger len said...

Islam is a religion which thrives on fear and intimidation. If this execution goes ahead the Whole World will see the true character of Islam and the way it treats those entrapped within its system.
Christianity is a real threat to Islam probably more so than anyone or anything else else.For Muslims to be told that God is not' Allah'the vengeful Islamic god but a God who cares for and loves Muslims is to totally overturn all that Islam stands for.

And those control the Islamic religious system are scared and will lash out in fear and anger at anyone who threatens the stranglehold they hold over the people.Fear is the driving force behind Islam, fear of 'Allah' and fear of those who operate his religion.

30 September 2011 at 07:42  
Blogger G. Tingey said...

NOT the whole of islam.

Please note that the Iraninan guvmint regularly persecutes Sufi muslims, for instance.
And I don't think that Ismaili are particularly welcome there, either.
( They are much too either tolerant, or quietist for the militant nutters in charge there )

30 September 2011 at 08:37  
Blogger ~Amy Thomson~ said...

Amen to Mr Integrity...
All we can do is fall on our knees and pray. If it's the Lord's will, I trust that He'll give Bro Yousef and his family strength and peace...My heart breaks for them!

I also believe God can turn this whole situation around at the last possible moment. We just need to trust Him and believe on His Word. Nothing is impossible with Him! Nothing's too hard for Him to do, or undertake in. We just leave it in His hands, for He knows best!

30 September 2011 at 08:37  
Blogger Minister Peter Grasso said...

I was inspired to create this music video to show solidarity for Pastor Yousef Nadarkhani and for the persecuted church. Over 170,000 Christian are martyred each year because of the belief in Jesus.

Minister Peter

8 October 2011 at 14:54  

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