Will Rage or the Holy Spirit Determine Iran’s Future?
To protect their nation from immorality, Iran’s “morality” police saw it fit to arrest and kill a woman for not properly wearing her hijab (headscarf). Since this incident on September 16, 2022, there have been ongoing demonstrations. Both sides have become hardened in their positions. Iranian forces have fired live ammunition into crowds of protesters. As of the middle of December, they had arrested thousands and killed well over 400 people. In December, they arrested a prominent actress and a soccer star for participating in the protests.
Most of the people they arrest are women and children. The Islamic regime has used sexual violence against both women and children, according to Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International. A 14-year-old girl who defiantly removed her headscarf in class was taken into custody. They repeatedly raped her and then killed her. The girl’s mother has also disappeared.
Such abuse of power naturally leads to rage and bitterness. Protesters started by burning their head scarfs and cutting their hair as part of a public but non-destructive protest. As the conflict intensified, the burnings have become more alarming. In October they set fires in a military base and Evin Prison, which was infamous for detaining political prisoners. There were four four deaths and 61 injuries in the prison blaze. Late in October, they burned a government building in Mahabad, a city in Kurdistan. On November 17, they went so far as to burn the ancestral home of the Islamic republic’s founder, Ayatollah Khomeini. Clearly, the rage is increasing, and more killings, rapes, and burnings will divide Iran even further.
Where will this end? The protests might fizzle out during the cold Iranian winter. It’s clear that the government crackdown by the government is intensifying. Yet it’s hard for some of their police and military forces to stomach brutalizing women and children. The country is divided by what they want in the future. About a third want to maintain an Islamic theocracy, about one-third want regime change and a secular government. The rest are unsure. If the government continues to molest women and children, that latter group might decide in favor of change. We must remember that the 1979 revolution came about because of government injustices, and it morphed into a rage-fueled bloodbath. Without the influence of the Holy Spirit, it can happen again.
The number of Christian believers in Iran has mushroomed since the 1979 revolution. These people can have an influence on a nation where rage and unbridled violence come both from the government and from those who want reasonable change. Pray for the Holy Spirit to direct Iran!
- FirstPost.com. Iran protests: 14-year-old girl repeatedly raped, killed. December 19, 2022.
- CNN. iran-protests-sexual-assault. November 21, 2022.
- Iran Intl. Exclusive: Document Shows Iran’s Army Worries About Loyalty of Troops. November 17, 2022.
- Grid News. Veils are burning and the regime is cracking down. What is the endgame for the protests in Iran? November 22, 2022.