This is an update of an appeal we ran here on March 26th.
We need to pray.
And we need bloggers and people on social networks to mobilize their followers to pray.
The American Center for Law and Justice reports:
It began last week. American Pastor Saeed Abedini, who is serving an eight-year prison term in Iran because of his Christian faith, has been suffering from internal bleeding for months – injuries received from the beatings in prison. In what could only be viewed as a cruel act of psychological abuse, prison officials took Pastor Saeed to a hospital last week – only to be turned away – and brought back to Evin prison without receiving medical treatment for his internal bleeding.
Now, comes word out of Iran, that the beatings and physical abuse are intensifying. Pastor Saeed reported today that last week he was severely beaten the same day the prison officials took him to the hospital. During the weekly prison visit today, Pastor Saeed’s family reported that his physical condition is worsening – seeing first-hand the marks and symptoms left by the recent beating. These beatings and the internal injuries are causing Pastor Saeed frequent fainting spells. Iranian officials are telling Pastor Saeed it could be an additional two months before he will receive medical treatment. Such a delay is inhumane and a gross violation of Iran’s international obligations.
In addition to refusing to give Pastor Saeed the medical care he needs, it now appears authorities are stepping up their physical abuse and psychological torture. Pastor Saeed reported that cellmates, who appear to have connections to the Iranian intelligence police, recently threatened they would suffocate Pastor Saeed in his sleep, making his death look like an accident. The daily threat that his life could be taken by his internal injuries or by the hands of cellmates, weighs heavily on Pastor Saeed.
Christianity Today reported Saeed was being pressured to renounce his faith.
Iranian officials have pressured imprisoned pastor Saeed Abedini to renounce his faith in Jesus even as they have stepped up their physical abuse and psychological torture of him, including taking him to a hospital but denying him medical treatment, according to recent reports.
In a letter obtained by the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), Abedini—a U.S. citizen of Iranian descent—wrote that he was told by Iranian prison officials, “Deny your faith in Jesus Christ and return to Islam or else you will not be released from prison. We will make sure you are kept here even after your 8 year sentence is finished.”
Abedini’s response, he wrote, is Romans 8:35-39, which says persecution and death cannot separate a believer from Christ.
“The reality of Christian living is that difficulties or problems do arise in our lives,” Abedini wrote. “Persecution and difficulties are not new occurrences, but are seen often in the Christian life. It is through the suffering and tribulations that we are to enter the Kingdom of God.”
I believe we need to pray for an absolute miracle here. We need this story to completely reverse course. We need to see a miracle release like God did for Paul and Silas in the book of Acts.
But will you pray?
Often on this blog we’ll tell you about some amazing thing you need to see or read or browse and there will be a section that says click here. Out of maybe a thousand visitors here in the first day it’s posted how many do you think actually click? Often less than ten. Many times just six. (The link in this paragraph doesn’t exist, it’s an example.) That’s why it scares me to ask people to pray.
Or for my Canadian readers, we went on three different blogs a year and a half ago with the goal of raising $150 for the Salvation Army. Now remember, Jon Acuff raised $60,000 to build a two kindergarten classrooms in Vietnam in a single day! So I figured we’d go way over our goal. We raised $135. That’s why it concerns me about asking people to pray.
You can’t assume it’s all okay, somebody else will cover this.
So today I’m asking you guys to pray, and to pray big; but as type this, I’m wondering how many will actually stop and maybe turn off your monitor right now and intercede — stand in the gap on behalf of Saeed — for God to do what only God can do?
Please, link to this story on your Facebook page or Twitter feed copying this shortlink: http://wp.me/pfdhA-4nJ
If you’re new to this story, here’s a Wikipedia article with some history