Hope. Everyone is looking for it, whether they admit it or not. But, is it attainable, or is it just an illusive dream? Yesterday, I shared why I believe there is great hope for America (though Christians must respond)!
Today, after reading up on headlines and other blogs that I follow, the question tugging at my mind is: Is there hope for Middle East countries like Iran? The answer is the same enthusiastic answer that I gave yesterday. (Go back and read it, if you’re wondering what that answer is!)
There is hope. Hope for America. Hope for Iran. Hope for war-torn Syria. Hope for Hamas-laden Gaza. Hope for the entire Middle East, and even the rest of the world. But our Hope…the Lord Jesus Christ…must be on the throne in order to reign!
But, you have to hear about what’s going on in Iran! Hormoz Shariat, the “Billy Graham of Iran,” has been beaming Christian programming into Iran via satellite since 2001 via his TV ministry, Iran Alive Ministries. Since that time, it is believed that millions of Iranians have accepted the Lord Jesus Christ! Did you know that!?!
How is that possible? Well, God has been at work! While we have focused on the atrocities of Iran and ISIS, the Lord has used those opportunities to open the eyes of Muslim people to discover the lies about Islam: its teachings are not peaceful, and anyone who strictly adheres to the theology will be led down the path of jihad (supportively, if not directly).
But here is how Hormoz Shariat describes what takes place:
- Muslims begin to believe that Islamic leaders are not “true Muslims.” After all, they have been taught that Islam is a religion of peace. But, in Muslim culture, one is not allowed to question Islamic theology…they must simply believe that what their spiritual leaders tell them is the truth. Thus, because they are taught that Islam is a religion of peace, Islamic leaders must not be “true Muslims.” In fact, they give Islam a bad name.
- Secondly, they begin to wonder what “true Islam” is. The leaders of ISIS and Iran both claim that what they are doing is true to both the Qur’an and to their prophet, Muhammad, and they make the case that what they are doing is within the confines of Islam. This creates conflict for those who hold to the idea that Islam is peaceful and good.
- They begin to recognize that Islamic leaders are indeed “true Muslims.” Whether it is in secret study by themselves or supernatural revelation, some begin to see that Islamic leaders are indeed living and acting according to the teachings of the Qur’an, and following the example of the prophet Muhammad. In fact, those leaders are Muslim fanatics.
- It becomes obvious that there is something fundamentally wrong with Islam. For some whose consciences are not seared, conviction sets in, causing them to rethink (and often reject) Islamic teaching and become more open to the teaching of Jesus Christ.
Friends, Jesus Christ is alive and well in Iran (and other places in the Middle East) and is using ISIS and Iran to reveal the depths of depravity perpetuated by the false gospel of the Qur’an and the Islamic faith. It seems as though a revival is breaking out in an area of the world where evil pours forth. Many are seeing dreams and visions, and Jesus is supernaturally appearing in order to make Himself known.
Jeremiah 49:38 tells us that the Lord will set His throne in Elam (Iran). The Lord will rule from His throne there, and the people will abide by His rule. They are Christians! Iran will become a Christian nation, and Hormoz Shariat believes Iran will be a nation that fulfills Romans 11:11:
I say then, they [Israel] did not stumble so as to fall, did they? May it never be! But by their transgression salvation has come to the Gentiles, to make them [Jews] jealous.
We know (according to Romans 11) that God opened a door of salvation to Gentiles, and aren’t we glad of that! One of His purposes in doing so was to make the Jewish people jealous for their God! Today Iran threatens to “wipe Israel off the map!” How jealous might the Jewish people become if even Iranians come to know the God of Israel!?!
Wow! Only God could come up with such a plan, and pull it off!
I could go on and on. However, if you want to know more, I recommend:
- Iran Alive Ministries website. You can find testimonies of Iranians coming to Christ on that site.
- The Billy Graham of Iran (article in Charisma magazine). You will find the fascinating story of Hormoz Shariat.
- Joel Rosenberg’s recent conversation with Hormoz Shariat.
Indeed, there is hope everywhere…and His name (no matter where you are) is Jesus Christ!