Recently Open Doors USA interviewed Mojtaba Hosseini, 30, a former pastor of an Iranian house church, who was arrested by the Iranian secret police as a “threat against national security.”
He had been previously arrested for leading a House Church and after his release immediately started leading a second group. This resulted in a second arrest and a three-year term in Iran’s notorious Evin Prison located outside Tehran reserved for political prisoners, murderers and drug dealers.
After his release in 2015, Mojtaba left Iran and recently shared how God miraculously provided while he was in prison.
He suffered in horrid conditions and admitted he was very scared. Initially he believed God was punishing him and spent hours repenting of his sins. That continued until God spoke to Mojtaba and told him to stop being so selfish and to look at the people around him.
For the first time he saw the desperate people inside this prison and realized that God wanted him to share his faith with them.
“It’s funny how God works sometimes. It would have been absolutely impossible for us to pass the big gates of the prison to bring the gospel to those who needed him so badly inside. But God just place me and other Christians inside the prison, among them to share the light.”
He began sharing Jesus with the murderers and drug dealers in Iran’s maximum security prison. Some became Christians, and those who didn’t, still appreciated Mojtaba’s prayers.
However, what Mojtaba also desired was a Bible and though he asked, the guards refused to provide one.
But then a Bible showed up through a most unusual source, a Muslim Imam.
The Imam was impressed with the faith of Mojtaba and the other Christians in the prison and decided he would help bring in scripture. Mojtaba believes God “filled his heart with kindness for us.”
Since the Imam was also unable to bring in a Bible, he came up with the idea of bringing in the scripture as part of English lessons being provided in the prison.
Once inside, there was a prisoner who was able to translate the English Bible verses into Farsi and Mojtaba began copying and distributing these verses. He handed them out to the new believers and those who showed an interest in Christ.
As word spread there were now Bible scriptures inside the prison, he got requests from other wards leading to more prisoners becoming Christians.
After this miraculous provision and the many who became Christian, Mojtaba is convinced God wanted him in prison to share the Gospel with people who would not otherwise hear it.
In our Western society, we find it difficult to understand how God would allow Christians to go to prison to share their faith. Yet, this is what happened in the Book of Acts when Paul and Silas were arrested in Philippi (Acts 16:16-40).
God caused an earthquake opening the doors and releasing Paul and Silas from their bounds. However, incredibly the two men refused to leave the prison. This act led to the jailer and his whole family becoming believers.
Their refusal to leave suggested the two men believed God wanted them there.