- About Smyrna
- SHARE Fund
- Meeting essential needs
- Building life skills
- Feeding the spirit
- World Impact
- SMI Prayer Letter/Prayer Guide
- User Login
Pastor Still under Death Sentence
April 14, 2012
UPDATE: According to some reports, the execution order was issued for a pastor in IRAN. He was arrested in 2009 and sentenced to death in 2010 for apostasy. In 2011 Iran’s Supreme Court upheld the sentence but sent his case back to the lower court for reexamination, where he was again declared guilty of apostasy. But the lower court delayed issuing a final verdict and instead referred the case to Iran’s Supreme Leader. Although it is uncertain whether the execution order was indeed issued, many people are concerned the pastor could be executed at any time without official notice.
Ask God to give him courage and spare his life. “For You have delivered my soul from death, yes, my feet from falling, that I may walk before God in the light of life.”
Updated from previous prayer request: Pastor's Case Stalled
LEARN MORE: UPDATE ON PASTOR YOUSEF NADARKHANI
Some of you have been following the story of Pastor Yousef Nadarkhani (alternatively spelled Youcef) for several years now. He was arrested in 2009 and sentenced to death for apostasy in 2010. Since then his case has been passed from court to court, sent to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khameni for review, and stalled by the head of Iran’s judiciary. Throughout the case, verbal reports have often preceded official written decisions.
By February reports began to surface claiming that Youcef’s execution order had been issued. On February 20 an Iranian church official received news of the execution order. He said, “Officially his lawyer still needs to receive a notification first, but nobody keeps the law in Iran." The situation was critical, because at any time he could be executed. It was not clear whether he would have the right to appeal the execution order. His lawyers and church leadership sought written confirmation of the reports. Some denied that his execution had been ordered, and others claimed that the order had been postponed. Others thought that the government might be purposely spreading misinformation.
Uncertainty remained because in Iran executions are sometimes carried out without any prior notice being given to the attorney or the family. Uncertainty still lingers. As the days pass, it appears that Yousef’s execution is being further delayed. But why and for how long we do not know. The death penalty against him still stands. The Iranian government is unpredictable, and could act when we least expect it. Please pray for Yousef and for his family.
“For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies.”—2 Corinthians 4:6-10