Such a big question.
The mainstream media has only recently shared the story of Youcef Nadarkhani, an Iranian pastor, who was arrested in October 2009, after he protested a government policy that required children to study the Qur’an in school.
Pastor Nadarkhani has two young sons.
Despite the Iranian constitution permitting freedom of religious practice, secret police called Nadarkhani before a political tribunal and arrested him for protesting. The charges were later amended to apostasy—he left Islam to follow Christ—and evangelism of Muslims. Nadarkhani was tried and sentenced to death for apostasy on November 13, 2010.
Nadarkhani’s case was reviewed in July 2011 to determine if he was previously a practicing Muslim. The court ruled that Nadarkhani was not a practicing Muslim before becoming a Christian but that he remains guilty because of his Muslim ancestry.
There are reports that execution orders for Pastor Nadarkhani may have been issued.
All because he refuses to renounce his faith in Jesus Christ.
I’m reminded of the following scriptures:
“Also I say to you, whoever confesses Me before men, him the Son of Man also will confess before the angels of God. But he who denies Me before men will be denied before the angels of God (Luke 12:8-9 NKJV).”
“For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, of him the Son of Man will be ashamed when He comes in His own glory, and in His Father’s, and of the holy angels (Luke 9:26 NKJV).”
“Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter (1 Peter 4:16 NKJV).”
We, on this side of the globe, live in free countries and have the ability to freely choose our beliefs. Which leads me to wonder how many would die for theirs?