Iran (MNN) — The U.S. and Iran are like two high school boys circling each other, ready for a fistfight. Europe, meanwhile, is stuck in the middle, while Russia and China are on the sidelines telling everyone to calm down.
According to The Japan Times, European Union leaders are trying to help Iran while avoiding U.S. sanctions on their own countries. Officials say the EU has until July 8 to save Iran; otherwise, a 2015 nuclear deal is off the table.
As explained here, the 2015 agreement relieved Iran of global pressure as long as officials promised not to develop nuclear weapons.
Calling the nuclear deal “defective at its core,” President Trump stopped U.S. involvement a year ago and imposed U.S. sanctions that effectively crippled Iran’s economy. In recent weeks, tensions rose from a “war of words” to tanker attacks, U.S. troop movement, and warnings of nuclear enrichment. More about that here.
Are recent developments simply a political ploy? Or, is there a real risk of military confrontation between the U.S. and Iran?
“There is a chance the political dance may escalate into military confrontation,” says Heart4Iran’s Mike Ansari. “Despite Mr. Rohani’s rhetoric that he doesn’t want to go to war with any country, for years Iran’s Quds force has waged war and promoted instability across Yemen, Syria, Iraq and the region.
“The current U.S. administration has taken a much harder stance against Iranian government which has got the Mullahs scared and desperate,” he continues.
“To what extent would the Ayatollahs go? It’s hard to predict but it’s safe to assume no country wants to see the Ayatollahs rule over a nuclear Iran.”
Meanwhile, God’s Spirit is moving in the world’s 9th-most difficult place to be a Christian and changing many Iranian hearts.
Iran’s current supreme leader – Ayatollah Ali Khamenei – obtained his life-long role thirty years ago. As outlined here by BBC News, Islamic clerics have ruled Iran with an iron fist since the 1979 revolution.
“Most Iranians long for a regime change and often look to the West [to foster] the collapse of Islamic rulers,” explains Ansari. “The people of Iran are done with an Islamic government… they feel robbed by their own leaders and are under tremendous financial strain.”
Last year, U.S. sanctions triggered an economic crisis and the Iranian currency plummeted to a new low. Continued challenges have pushed Iranians’ frustration and patience to the edge.
“For example, Amir – a young gentleman who’s [from a] Muslim background – he called our TV programs on Mohabat TV and he said, ‘We Iranians know Islam is bankrupt. It has nothing to offer us except misery, hatred, and anger, but we still love God… Can you tell us more about your Jesus?’
“Iran is experiencing a spiritual awakening. God is moving there and Jesus is building His Church.”
Heart4Iran delivers messages about peace, love, and acceptance of the Gospel to Farsi-speakers in Iran and throughout the region. Through partnerships, Heart4Iran sends Bibles to viewers, connects them with existing underground home churches, and uses virtual church, satellite TV, and social media tools for discipleship.
“Every day our ministry logs around 800 contacts from people inside Iran asking us about Jesus and Christianity. To these people, our message represents hope – which is in scarcity all across Iran.”
Help introduce Iranians to Christ by underwriting ministry costs. Most importantly, pray.
“Please pray for all the leaders across the region to give peace a chance. Also, pray for the vast majority of Iranians who are loving, peaceful and decent people. They are scared and hopeless.”
Header image is a representative stock photo obtained via Pexels.