Originally Posted by yolland
For the record, his wife herself spent 10 months in prison, during which she too refused to recant, before being acquitted (generally, only community leaders such as pastors are held indefinitely like this for "apostasy" in Iran). So I doubt she, for one, would consider herself "fucked over" if her husband likewise refused to repent. It should also be kept in mind that Nadarkhani isn't just any old "apostate," he's a community leader looked up to by his cohort in a country where religious minorities (converts or otherwise) are marginalized and vulnerable even in the best of times.
I understand this perspective, and am not sure what I personally might do in the hard-to-imagine event that I were in a similar situation. (Some in my father's family were apparently Marranos aka crypto-Jews back in Portugal before fleeing to Amsterdam, so, there's a kind of precedent there I guess.) But I seriously doubt many people in this situation could be properly (and dismissively) characterized as helplessly ruled by fear that God Will Get Mad If I Repent, or I'm Gonna Be A Hero In Heaven If I Resist. This is also a freedom of conscience issue, a stand with one's life for what is broadly internationally recognized as a fundamental human right, with ethical ramifications beyond just the individual and his immediate family. What else are people sometimes punished and executed for in this world that they could always pretend not to practice or believe in, for the sake of staying around to help support their families? I can think of other things...There's a case to be made that we have greater obligations than those to one's spouse and children, and I'm not just talking about God. I don't think (well, actually, I know) the responses here would be the same if this were, say, an atheist being persecuted.
plus i would imagine it's an integral part of his faith to stand up for his beliefs and not to "deny Jesus Christ" - aren't there teachings specifically about that in the Christian faith??
i guess if he dies because of his faith, he will become something of a hero among his community and perhaps make his cause stronger, not to mention international outcry, whereas if he recanted, well, that would be one more freedom taken away by this medieval style of bullying