According to Open Doors USA, it is both illegal to convert to Christianity and preach in Iran. Oftentimes Christian pastors will be arrested and given long prison sentences for “crimes against the national security.”
If a person opens up doors to a house church in Iran, then that home could be frequently raided and monitored. And the prison situation is terrible.
Despite these issues, Christianity Today reports the Iranian church has grown to around 1 million members. This points to the fact that the church thrives still.
This is according to a survey by GAMAAN, a research group based out of the Netherlands.
The survey asked 50,000 Iranians what their belief was. 90% of those surveyed live in Iran.
According to the survey, 1.5% of Iranians are Christians. Extrapolating that out yields a minimum of 750,000 Iranian Christians, but there are also 117,500 Armenian and Assyrian Christians living in the country, putting the actual baseline closer to 867,500 Christians at minimum.
However, Christianity Today reports the survey itself states there are “without doubt in the order of magnitude of several hundreds of thousands and growing beyond a million” Christians in the country.
So much so that Christianity Today reports Iran is feeling threatened by the growth of Christian churches in the country.