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-Iran: Christian Pastor is Facing Execution Because His Ancestry Was Muslim?

by Dr. D ~ September 28th, 2011


Iranian pastor Yousef Nadarkhani has refused to recant his Christian faith before two court hearings on September 25 and 26. If he continues to refuse, he will be executed. His final opportunity is scheduled for today (September 28).

UPDATE: Pastor Yousef did refuse to recant for the 3rd and final time before the court on Wednesday. His fate will now be determined within the next week.

Here’s synopsis of Pastor Nadarkhani’s Case:

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.

Response: The Iranian Supreme Court sent the case back to the Provincial Court to determine if Youcef had been a Muslim before converting to Christianity. After their investigation they found that the pastor had never been a practicing Muslim but they continued to find him guilty of Apostasy anyway because some of his ancestors had been?

How crazy is that? They are obviously determined to kill this Christian pastor. He is not personally guilty of apostasy since he was never a Muslim but is going to be executed anyway. His family was once Muslim so he should have been?

It has been pointed out by Youcef’s lawyer that their judgment was contrary to both Iranian and international law. Nevertheless the judges stated that they had to uphold the decision of the Supreme Court and rule on the basis of sharia law. Islamic sharia law allows someone accused of apostasy the opportunity to recant and rejoin Islam at least 3 times before execution.

He has already been brought before the court twice now and ordered to recant. Today may be his 3rd and final appearance before execution is arranged. Please pray for Pastor Youcef and his family.            *Top

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6 Responses to -Iran: Christian Pastor is Facing Execution Because His Ancestry Was Muslim?

  1. Brian

    When a murderer, convicted of a heinous and brutal crime, is scheduled for execution in the US, those opposed to capital punishment rally to attempt to block the execution. Hollywood elites, media figures, and grassroots anti-capital punishment organizations band together in a very vocal, very vigorous display of their displeasure.

    Where are they now?

    Where is Amnesty international?

    These groups are basically silent- I would have respect for them if they even-handedly opposed all executions but the selective nature of their outrage reveals their moral hypocrisy.


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  4. Dr. D

    Good points Brian

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