THE NATURE OF IRAN’S THREAT TO ISRAEL
This past April, the tensions between Israel and Iran became
literally more explosive when Iran established an air defense
system in southern Syria that could be used against Israeli Air
Force (IAF) planes acting in defense of Israel. Iran continues to
control the area just north of Israel’s border through Hezbollah,
its proxy. This has created an extremely dangerous situation on
the northern border of Israel, and it is why the IAF attacked the
Iranian air defense system in southern Syria.
It is apparent that Iran and Russia are supporting the Syrian
president Bashar al-Assad in his war against insurgents. This war
is bad for Israel—not that victory on the part of the insurgents
is good for Israel either! To win this war, Assad was forced to
create an alliance with Russia and Iran. The United States, of
course, opposed this coalition and is supporting Israel. The U.S.
has been sending airstrikes into Syria to destroy the chemical
weapons Bashar is using against his own
people. Of course, one day, these weapons
could easily be used against Israel, as could
Iranian nuclear weapons when developed.
There is no question that Syria, Iran, and
Russia form a triad of enemies to the nation
of Israel now perched on the northern border
of the Holy Land.
THE CURRENT STATE OF
IRANIAN SHI’ITE END-TIME
JUNE 2018 / THE CHOSEN PEOPLE - 3
What is even more disconcerting
for those of us who read the Bible and
understand God’s plan for Israel is that the
Islam of the Ayatollahs is not simply driven
by political motives or territorial ambition. Their reasons for
hating Israel and the United States are theologically motivated
and are not easily seen at first glance. Let me explain.
The modern state of Iran is Shi’ite, as distinguished from
Sunni. Shi’ites believe that the arrival of the Mahdi (Messiah)
will be signaled by the following signs:
• The vast majority of people who profess to be
Muslim will be so only in name despite their practice
of Islamic rites, and it will be they who make war
with the Mahdi.
• Before his coming will come the red death and
the white death, killing two thirds of the world’s
population. The red death signifies violence and the
white death is plague.
• Several figures will appear: the Al-Harth, Al-Mansur,
Shuaib bin Saleh, and the Sufyani.
• There will be a great conflict in the land of Syria
until it is destroyed.
• Death and fear will afflict the people
of Baghdad and Iraq. A fire will appear in the sky
and a redness will cover them.2
There are some similarities between biblical and Islamic
eschatology that cannot be missed! One point of uniqueness
involves Syria—which causes the conflict in Syria to take
on a new spiritual dimension. Perpetuating the conflict in
Syria prepares the path for the coming of the Mahdi, the Shi’ite
The battle on the northern border of Israel in Lebanon
between pro-Assad and anti-Assad forces fought by Russia and
Iran raises the level of danger to Israel since Iran’s eschatological
motivation is always a more potent threat than mere nationalism.
THE GROWTH OF THE GOSPEL AMONG
The Lord is also performing incredible miracles among
Iranians who are coming to Jesus the Messiah. Perhaps you have
heard of the dreams and visions Muslims are experiencing both
within and outside of Iran. Jesus has been revealing Himself
to Iranians in this nation where it is still almost impossible to
conduct regular missionary activity. Unfortunately, it is also not
uncommon for Iranian pastors and Christian
leaders to be put in prison for their faith and
ministries. One of the very exciting ministries
happening today in and outside of Iran that
is touching the lives of Iranians—especially
Muslims—is that of Hormoz Shariat.
He founded and continues to broadcast
evangelistic television programs in Farsi
through the Iran Alive television program.
THE IRANIAN MESSIANIC
Iranian Muslims are coming to faith in
Jesus the Messiah, but there are also many
Iranian Jewish followers of Jesus around the
globe as well. In the center section of this
© Bigstockphoto.com | dmitry kushch
newsletter, we feature the testimonies of two Iranian Jewish
couples who came to faith in Jesus the Messiah in the United
States. Three of these four believers have their testimonies on the
ifoundshalom.com Messianic Jewish testimony website that we
created in partnership with One for Israel ministries. We have
also begun an Isaiah 53 outreach campaign in Farsi through
Facebook ads focused on reaching the hundreds of thousands of
Iranian Jews in Israel, the United States, and England.
We need to continue to pray for God’s work among Iranians.
As our brother Hormoz attests, when even the most vociferous
Iranian opponent to Israel comes to know Jesus as Lord, they also
tend to love the Jewish people and support Israel. The testimonies
of Iranian believers, both Jews and Gentiles alike, is evidence
that God loves Iran and is not willing that any Iranian should
perish without knowing the Lord! It is also clear that God still
has His holy and powerful hand upon the Jewish people, even
though difficult days lie ahead before the return of the Messiah.
Your brother in the Messiah,
2 Momen, Moojan. An introduction to Shi’i Islam: The history and doctrines of Twelver Shi’ism
(New Haven: Yale University press, 1985), 75, 166–168. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mahdi#