Once again, Iran is in the news promising to significantly increase the amount of uranium enrichment this summer. In a May, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani announced that Iran would quadruple uranium production and increase its level or enrichment. By July 1, Iran had surpassed the limits imposed on it by the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and could begin enrichment to weapons grade.
What is Iran’s ultimate goal? Do they want to instigate a war with the United States? In June, Iran attacked oil tankers in the Gulf on Oman and shot down an unarmed U.S. drone flying over international waters in the Persian Gulf. Showing tremendous restraint, President Donald Trump declined to order military strikes against Iran. Joel Rosenburg, author and authority on Israel and the Middle East, stated, “No one can say this President isn’t being tough on Iran. The key is for Trump and his national security team to continue ratchet up the pressure on Iran and run their strategy on their own timetable, not Iran's. The President and his national security team are doing a good job bringing maximum pressure on the ayatollahs of Iran and bringing U.S. allies along step-by-step. If your overall policy is right, it’s not weakness to show patience and not be trigger happy.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has accused Iran of trying to “blackmail” the world. “They’re hoping, that regime, that by violating the deal it will be able to blackmail the world into making concessions and reducing the economic pressure on it,” said Netanyahu. Israel faces daily attacks from Iranian proxies, but a nuclear Iran could be catastrophic to that nation. Israel has promised that it will not allow Iran to obtain nuclear weapons, even if it has to act alone.
Relevant Scripture Passages
As the rhetoric and threats coming from Iran continue to increase, we cannot help but be reminded of numerous scriptural passages. Daniel and Jesus both warned of continual wars and rumors of wars until the return of Christ (Daniel 9:26; Matthew 24:6). The Old Testament prophet Joel also fearfully predicted that the citizens of the world would be engaged in such a great degree of warfare that they would need to turn their everyday tools into weapons of war (Joel 3:9,10). With the threat of Iran promising “ominous” and “unpredictable” consequences, the grim predictions of the prophet Joel no longer seem so difficult to imagine. With such potential for tensions to escalate, we should be in serious prayer.