WHY Millions of Muslims are Leaving ISLAM?

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Christian Pastor Yousef Nadarkhani faces potential execution
By Jordan Sekulow
Just days after Iran released two Americans accused of spying, an Iranian court has upheld the apostasy conviction and execution sentence of Christian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani.

The 11th branch of Iran’s Gilan Provincial Court has determined that Nadarkhani has Islamic ancestry and therefore must recant his faith in Jesus Christ. Iran’s supreme court had previously ruled that the trial court must determine if Youcef had been a Muslim before converting to Christianity.

However, the judges, acting like terrorists with a hostage, demanded that he recant his faith in Christ before even taking evidence. The judges stated that even though the judgment they have made is against the current Iranian and international laws, they have to uphold the previous decision of the 27th Branch of the Supreme Court in Qom.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs...ial-execution/2011/09/27/gIQA9ZZB2K_blog.html
 

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Iran: Pastor Nadarkhani refuses to recant during trial 26/09/2011

http://dynamic.csw.org.uk/article.asp?t=press&id=1231&search

Iranian pastor Yousef Nadarkhani has twice refused to recant his Christian faith during two court hearings held in Rasht, Gilan Province on 25 and 26 September. Sources close to CSW indicate that recanting will again be demanded at sessions scheduled for 27 and 28 September, and that if he continues to refuse, he will be executed thereafter.

Pastor Nadarkhani was tried and found guilty of apostasy (abandoning Islam) in September 2010 by the court of appeals in Rasht. The verdict was delivered verbally in court, while written confirmation of the death sentence was received nearly two months later. At the appeal in June 2011, the Supreme Court of Iran upheld Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani’s sentence, but asked the court in Rasht, which issued the initial sentence, to re-examine whether or not he had been a practicing Muslim adult prior to converting to Christianity. The written verdict of the Supreme Court’s decision included provision for annulment of the death sentence if Pastor Nadarkhani recanted his faith.

Following investigation, the court in Rasht has ruled that Pastor Nadarkhani was not a practicing Muslim adult before becoming a Christian. However, the court has decided that he remains guilty of apostasy because he has Muslim ancestry. Pastor Nadarkhani’s lawyer, Mr Mohammed Ali Dadkhah, has made it clear to the court that the repeated demand for recanting is against both Iranian law and the constitution. The court replied that the verdict of the Supreme Court must be applied, regardless of the illegality of the demand.

The death sentence for apostasy is not codified in the Iranian Penal Code. However, using a loophole in Iran’s constitution, the judges in Rasht based their original verdict on fatwas by Ayatollahs Khomeini, the “father” of Iran’s revolution in 1979, Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of Iran, and of Makarem Shirazi, currently the most influential religious leader in Iran.

Pastor Yousef Nadarkhani, of the Church of Iran denomination, was arrested in his home city of Rasht on 13 October 2009 while attempting to register his church. His arrest is believed to have been due to his questioning of the Muslim monopoly on the religious instruction of children in Iran. He was initially charged with protesting; however the charges against him were later changed to apostasy and evangelising Muslims. His lawyer, Mr Mohammed Ali Dadkhah, a prominent Iranian human rights defender, is also facing legal difficulties. On Sunday 3 July a court in Tehran sentenced Mr Dadkhah to nine years in jail and a 10-year ban on practicing law or teaching at university for "actions and propaganda against the Islamic regime". He is currently appealing the sentence.

CSW’s Special Ambassador Stuart Windsor said, “CSW is calling on key members of the international community to urgently raise Pastor Nadarkhani’s case with the Iranian authorities. His life depends on it, and we have grave concerns regarding due process in this case, and also in that of his lawyer, Mr Dadkhah. The verdict handed down to Pastor Nadarkhani is in violation of the international covenants to which Iran is a signatory, including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICPPR), which guarantees freedom of religion and freedom to change one’s religion. It also violates article 23 of the Iranian Constitution, which states that no-one should be molested or taken to task simply for holding a certain belief.”

Time is of the essence. Please take action today.

CSW is calling for urgent prayer and action on behalf of Pastor Nadarkhani today. Please email the Iranian embassy as soon as you can, urging them not to go ahead with the execution following the trial.

For further information or to arrange interviews please contact Kiri Kankhwende, Press Officer at Christian Solidarity Worldwide on +44 (0)20 8329 0045 / +44 (0) 78 2332 9663, email kiri@csw.org.uk or visit www.csw.org.uk.

Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) is a Christian organisation working for religious freedom through advocacy and human rights, in the pursuit of justice.

Notes to Editors:

1. The use of fatwas as a basis for the verdict on Nadarkhani is provided for under Article 167 of the Iranian Constitution, which states that while judges have a duty to find a basis for their rulings within the legal code, “if such a basis doesn’t exist, they must cite reliable Islamic sources or a valid fatwa from which they have drawn a judgment in order to issue a verdict. Judges may not refuse to hear cases or issue rulings only because the case before them is not covered in the legal code, or there may be shortcomings or conflicts in the law.”

2. Mohammed Ali Dadhkah is a founding member of the Defenders of Human Rights Centre, an Iranian organisation, along with Nobel Prize winner Shirin Ebadi.
 

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There are three ways of responding if you are a Muslim and you hear something wrong (against Islam): 1) act with your hands (violence) if you are strong; 2) speak loudly if you are weak; and 3) keep quiet if you are overwhelmed.
 

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About Elam

http://www.elam.com/articles/About-Elam/

Background
Elam was founded in 1988 by senior Iranian church leaders with a vision to serve the growing church in the Iran region. From the beginning, Elam's passion was to train and equip Iranian Christians to reach and disciple their country men. In 1990 six emerging leaders arrived in England from Iran to begin their fulltime ministry training. They lived in a small, two-bedroom flat and used the kitchen as a classroom. Since then, Elam has seen many years of God's faithfulness. By God's grace, the ministry is growing and is being used to strengthen and expand the church in the Iran region in a significant way.

Iran: Closed Land, Open Hearts
Since the 1979 Islamic revolution, Iranians have become increasingly disillusioned with Islam. The political, economic, and spiritual situation in Iran has resulted in a deep spiritual hunger for truth. Iran may be a closed land, but the people have open hearts. Iranians today are seen as the most open Muslim people to the Gospel in the world. More have become Christians since the revolution than the previous 1,300 years put together.

Unprecedented Church Growth
In 1979, there were less than 500 known Christians from a Muslim background in Iran. Today the most conservative estimate is that there are at least 100,000 believers in the nation. Church leaders believe that millions can be added to the church in the next few years-such is the spiritual hunger that exists and the disillusionment with the Islamic regime. If we remain faithful to our calling, our conviction is that it is possible to see the nation transformed within our lifetime. Because Iran is a strategic gateway nation, the growing church in Iran will impact Muslim nations across the Islamic world.

Vision and Strategy for Impact
Elam's vision is that all the people of the Iran region would have the opportunity to come to know the Lord Jesus Christ and follow Him as a disciple, and that they would be instrumental in taking the Gospel to other Muslims. To achieve this Vision, our goals are to:

Train leaders and workers to be effective ministers of the Gospel in the Iran region.

Equip the Church with resources that will assist them in their ministry to the people of the Iran region.

Send leaders and workers to strengthen existing churches, establish new churches, and provide relief for the poor and persecuted.
 

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昨天在中东长期宣教的牧师讲了一个感人的故事。

有一天,当地的牧师们聚会(从照片看可能是小范围研讨)。上午由一位阿拉伯牧师证道,而下午由一位犹太人牧师证道。

阿拉伯和以色列在历史上和现实中几千年互相征战,许多穆斯林更是以消灭以色列为终身奋斗的目标。这分属阿拉伯以色列两个敌对民族的弟兄姊妹如何相处?

上午阿拉伯牧师证道。无话。到了下午,轮到一位犹太人牧师证道了。我们的牧师也为他捏了一把汗。因为根据他在中东穆斯林国家生活的经验,阿拉伯人对以色列人的深刻敌意是无法化解的。

这时,那位犹太人牧师请阿拉伯牧师们坐下,他要效法主耶稣为他们洗脚!

阿拉伯牧师们自然是极力推辞。不仅仅是因为客气,也是因为他们实在是不愿意让这位犹太人(尽管他是一位弟兄!)给他们洗脚。

但是,主耶稣的命令他们是无法抗拒的。推让一番之后,他们只好坐下,由这位犹太人,他们民族的仇敌的儿子,也是他们的弟兄,给他们洗脚。

在那位谦卑的犹太人牧师服侍他们的时候,这几位阿拉伯弟兄都在默默流泪。

牧师给我们看到的,就是这样一个景象:有几位阿拉伯牧师一字排开坐在椅子上,每人脚下有一盆水,他们中有人正在擦眼泪。在他们前面,有一位犹太人牧师半蹲着,正在专注地为其中一位擦脚。
 

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