The Barbarians Are Here

Preventing the Collapse of Western Civilization in Times of Terrorism


By Michael Youssef, PhD

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For decades, Americans were vaguely aware that Islamist barbarians were in the deserts of the Middle East and in the mountains of Afghanistan and Pakistan, executing “infidels” and raiding villages with unrecognizable names. But the Muslim world seemed far away, remote, and irrelevant to our daily lives. Then came the terrorist attacks of 9/11, followed by attacks at Fort Hood, the Boston Marathon, San Bernardino, and more. Now terrorists seem to be emerging everywhere, unleashing senseless death and destruction on our nation. They are here, and their goal is nothing less than global conquest. Motivated by ancient prophecies, they are flooding into Western countries determined to conquer our countries and establish a global Muslim caliphate. In The Barbarians Are Here, Dr. Michael Youssef provides clear insight into the motives and mission of the Islamic extremists. He offers practical steps we can take right now to begin a New Reformation that will restore the hope of Western civilization. It’s not too late. We are not doomed to destruction, even though the barbarians are already here. But we haven’t a moment to lose.

“Let this book shape how you think, pray, and take the Gospel to the ends of the earth.” — R. Albert Mohler, Jr., President of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

“I want every American, every citizen, and every member of my family to read this book. It is foolhardy not to.” — Pat Boone, Entertainer, Pat Boone Enterprises


Islam and the West offer two very different and irreconcilable visions of society. The West currently faces huge challenges from the Islamic world. As Dr. Youssef points out in this book, Christians must view this conflict theologically and with a specific gospel focus. This book is an illuminating discussion of the times and of the challenges that Islam poses to the advance of the gospel. Let this book shape how you think, pray, and take the gospel to the ends of the earth.

—R. Albert Mohler, Jr.

President of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary




Copyright © 2017 by Michael Youssef

Published by Worthy Books, an imprint of Worthy Publishing Group, a division of Worthy Media, Inc., One Franklin Park, 6100 Tower Circle, Suite 210, Franklin, TN 37067.

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Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Names: Youssef, Michael, author.

Title: The Barbarians are here : preventing the collapse of western civilization in times of terrorism / by Michael Youssef.

Description: Franklin, TN : Worthy Publishing, 2017. | Includes bibliographical references.

Identifiers: LCCN 2016055613 | ISBN 9781617956638 (hardcover)

Subjects: LCSH: Christianity and other religions--Islam. | Islam--Relations--Christianity. | Civilization, Western--Islamic influences. | Islamic fundamentalism. | Religious militants. | Terrorism--Religious aspects--Islam. | Civilization, Western--Forecasting.

Classification: LCC BP172 .Y68 2017 | DDC 261.2/7--dc23

LC record available at

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Quotations from the Quran are taken from the Abdullah Yusuf Ali translation (or, where indicated, the Marmaduke Pickthall translation) in Three Translations of The Koran (Al-Qur’an) Side by Side (public domain) at

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THOUGH I AM an American and a Christian, I was born in the Middle East and I grew up in a Muslim-dominated culture. I have a deep love and respect for the people of the Middle East, whether Christian, Jewish, or Muslim.

Please understand that the word barbarians in the title of this book refers to Islamist extremists and terrorists, not to Muslim people in general. This term has a specific meaning, which I discuss in greater detail in chapter 1. I use this term not as an insult or to hurt anyone’s feelings, but because it is the most accurate term to describe a specific group of people who are not members of our Western civilization and who are actively trying to destroy our civilization from without and within.

It’s important that we distinguish between Muslim ideology and Muslims as people. I do not shy away from speaking candidly about the impact of political Islam on the civilizations of the world. Yet I have many dear friends and acquaintances who embrace Islam, and I don’t want anyone to misunderstand my genuine affection for Muslim people.

As a Christian, I see all other religious systems as fallen, broken, and unable to save. Jesus declared, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6). The apostle Peter testified before the Sanhedrin, “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). I would not be true to my Christian faith if I believed otherwise.

But the fact that I, as a Christian, view Islam as a false and fallen worldview does not mean I look down on Muslim people. In truth, I am compelled by my love for Muslim people. I deeply desire that Muslim people would experience the freedom and fullness of life that can be theirs through knowing Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.



IN FEBRUARY 2015, ISIS released a horrifying five-minute video showing the beheading of twenty-one Coptic Christian men. The mass murder took place on the coast of Libya by the Mediterranean Sea. ISIS had kidnapped the men, all but one of whom were Egyptian, from the city of Sirte, Libya, where they were doing migrant work. Many of the men, dressed in orange jumpsuits like prisoners, spoke the name of the Lord Jesus as they were executed.

The one non-Egyptian martyr was a young man from West Africa, a coworker of the Egyptians. He was not a Christian at the time of the kidnapping, but when he saw the great faith of the Egyptian Christians, he received Jesus as his Lord and Savior. It is reported that when the terrorists told him he could live if he renounced Jesus, he replied, “Their God is my God.”

The ISIS video was titled “A Message Signed with Blood to the Nations of the Cross.” After the murders had been carried out, the hooded speaker pointed his knife to the sea, toward Rome, and declared in English, “We will conquer Rome by Allah’s permission.”1

The US government pretended not to know the terrorists’ motives, referring to the twenty-one men not as martyred Christians but simply as “Egyptian citizens.”2 The terrorists, however, were obeying the commands of their “holy book.” Quran 8.12 tells Muslims to terrorize “unbelievers” (Christians and Jews) and “smite ye above their necks” (that is, behead them). And Quran 47.4 commands Muslims who encounter “unbelievers” to “smite at their necks.” So these Islamists beheaded twenty-one Christians and spilled their blood into the Mediterranean so that it might flow toward Rome—a declaration of war against the Vatican and the Christian West.

The Islamists intend to darken the Western world with the black flag of political Islam. Their goal is global conquest. They are inspired by ancient prophecies, such as this one, preserved in the Sunni hadith (traditions) by Abu Hurairah, a companion of Muhammad, the founder of Islam:

[Armies carrying] black flags will come from Khurasaan [Iran and Afghanistan]. No power will be able to stop them and they will finally reach Eela [Baitul Maqdas, the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem] where they will erect their flags.3

These Islamists are flooding into Western countries, often disguised as refugees. They are using our political system, legal system, and economic system against us. They are even using our compassion against us, preying on our generosity and our willingness to help people in need. Make no mistake: this is a gradual, deliberate invasion.

Is the notion of a conquered Western world and a global black-flag caliphate (Islamic empire) just a fevered Muslim dream? Or is it our worst nightmare in the making? With nearly fifty million Muslims already in Europe—many of whom are foot soldiers for the Islamic conquest—it’s not as far-fetched as you might think. And Western governments are enabling the conquest in the name of compassion.


Since 2014, the governments of the European Union have been taking in huge numbers of Muslims from troubled and war-torn regions, including Syria, Afghanistan, Eritrea, Nigeria, and Somalia. Refugees have streamed into Spain and Italy from North Africa, into Greece via Turkey, and into Eastern Europe via the Balkans. Once inside the European Union, many spread out into France and England, Germany and Austria, and the Scandinavian countries. Some even take an Arctic route through Russia into Finland and Norway.

Many Western leaders, including Germany’s chancellor, Angela Merkel, claim that their sole motivation for taking Muslim asylum seekers is humanitarian compassion. But there’s a great deal of evidence that the real motivation is economic. Much as many American politicians (both Democrats and Republicans) quietly enable illegal immigration as a way of importing cheap labor, many European leaders see Muslim refugees as an exploitable class of low-wage workers. For short-term gain, they are selling out thousands of years of Judeo-Christian culture—and they are selling out the people they were elected to serve.

The cultural naïveté of many Westerners was captured in news photos I saw in the fall of 2015, in which groups of misguided Germans applauded trainloads of Islamist asylum seekers and held up signs reading “Welcome Refugees!” Meanwhile, the passengers emerging from the train—mostly young Arab men—raised their fists and shouted, “Allahu Akbar!” That shout—which means “Allah is great!”—is the Islamic shout of triumph and conquest. It is the shout that hordes of Islamists have raised throughout fourteen centuries of religious wars.

We have to wonder why so many Arab immigrants are young, healthy-looking men. You would expect that a refugee population from a war zone would consist largely of women and children. That is clearly not the case.

According to Eurostat, the official statistical analysis bureau of the European Union, men far outnumbered women among first-time asylum applicants in 2015. Among applicants aged fourteen to thirty-four, approximately 80 percent of applicants were male; among applicants aged thirty-five to sixty-four, approximately 66 percent were male. These are disturbing statistics. They show that European countries are importing large numbers of the key demographic group for Islamic terrorism—young Muslim men.4

Equally disturbing are the reports of some of the songs and slogans that many of these asylum seekers were singing and chanting as the refugee trains rolled into Europe: “May Allah make orphans out of their children.” “May Allah make it difficult on their women.” “Allah give victory to Islam everywhere.” “Allahu Akbar! There is no god but Allah and the martyr is beloved by Allah!”5

And here’s another troubling fact about Muslim refugee migration into the West: Christians make up 10 percent of the Syrian population, but only 2.5 percent of Syrian refugees. Of the 10,126 Syrian refugees who migrated to the United States in fiscal year 2016, only fifty-two (0.5 percent) were Christians.6 Why are there so few Christian refugees? The answer to that question is a paradox: The ones with the most desperate need for refugee status are the least likely to obtain it. In the often-corrupt refugee programs of the United Nations, you need resources and connections to get help. Christians have no friends in Muslim-controlled high places and no money for bribes.

Christians avoid the refugee camps, where their lives would be in danger. Since the UN makes up asylum lists from refugee camp populations, Christians don’t get counted. As Acton Institute scholar Jonathan Witt has concluded:

As bad off as the Muslim refugees are, they aren’t without politically well-connected advocates in the Middle East. Many Muslim powerbrokers are happy to see Europe and America seeded with Muslim immigrants.… By and large, they support Muslim immigration to the West and have little interest in seeing Christian refugees filling up any spaces that might have been filled by Muslim refugees.

The deck, in other words, is heavily stacked against the Christian refugees.7

We also have to wonder why only Western countries are expected to take in refugees. Why aren’t Arab countries taking in fellow Arabs? From a cultural standpoint, doesn’t that make infinitely more sense than sending them into a non-Islamic culture where they don’t know the language? Part of the answer lies in the fact that nations such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar are major sponsors of the expansionist, fundamentalist Wahhabi-Salafi school of Islam. Using refugees as an invasion strategy suits their purposes.


There is an Islamic tradition—going back to the time of Islam’s founder, Muhammad—known as hijrah, which literally means “migration.”8 In AD 622, Muhammad led his followers from Mecca to the city of Yathrib (now Medina). That migration was the first hijrah, and it transformed Muhammad into a political and military leader.

To this day, hijrah is one of the chief strategies for expanding Islam into other nations. Moving into a new land to spread Islam is viewed as an act of self-sacrifice that Allah will reward, according the Quran:

He who forsakes his home in the cause of Allah, finds in the earth many a refuge, wide and spacious: Should he die as a refugee from home for Allah and His Messenger, His reward becomes due and sure with Allah. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. (4:100)

Many Muslim asylum seekers in Europe and America just want to escape persecution and war. But there can be no doubt that much of the Muslim migration is an act of hijrah—sometimes called “jihad by migration.” So in a real sense, Western governments, including the United States, are importing jihad (struggle against “unbelievers”) to our shores.

ISIS has published a troubling document called Libya: The Strategic Gateway for the Islamic State. The Quilliam Foundation, a British think tank, analyzed the document and called it a strategic plan to use Libya as the launch area for sending jihadists disguised as refugees into Europe. The document points out that Libya, located just three hundred miles from several European coasts, is well supplied with weapons from Muammar Gaddafi’s arsenal. Libya, the document states, “has a long coast and looks upon the southern Crusader states, which can be reached with ease by even a rudimentary boat.”9 Many refugees have reached Europe by exactly that route.

In September 2015, a leading Islamic imam, Sheikh Muhammad Ayed, stood before a Muslim audience at Jerusalem’s al-Aqsa Mosque, the third holiest site in the Islamic religion, and said, “We will breed children with them, because we shall conquer their countries, whether you like it or not, oh Germans, oh Americans, oh French, oh Italians, and all those like you. Take the refugees! We shall soon collect them in the name of the coming Caliphate.”10

Western audiences were never intended to hear those words, because they reveal the true aims of political Islam. They reveal the strategy that underlies the current invasion of Western civilization. Not all of those seeking asylum in the West are refugees.

Some have come as barbarians.


What is a barbarian? Why do I use this term to describe the Islamists who want to destroy us? This is not merely an exercise in name-calling or resorting to insults. I don’t use the term barbarian to hurt anyone’s feelings or to make someone out to be culturally inferior. This word has a specific meaning, and I am using it in a precise and careful way to convey a specific shade of significance.

A barbarian is a person who is not part of our civilization, who wants no part of our civilization, and who seeks the conquest and destruction of our civilization. The Islamists—Muslims who seek to restructure all governments and all of society in accordance with the laws of Islam—are cultural chauvinists who see Islam’s Sharia law as vastly superior to Western secular law. They believe a totalitarian Islamic culture would be infinitely superior to the free societies of Western civilization, which are based on Judeo-Christian values. They seek the destruction of Western civilization, and that makes them—by definition—barbarians.

As Christians who seek to live in obedience to the Great Commission (the command of the Lord Jesus to preach the gospel to all people in every nation, recorded in Matthew 28:19–20), we want to convert people to a saving faith in Jesus Christ—but only those who come willingly and freely. Unlike the Islamist cult of the barbarians, Christians do not make converts at the point of the sword. We do not conquer in the name of Christ through murder, war, terror, and political subversion. That is one of the many differences between the Christian faith and the cult of the Islamists.


For decades, Americans were vaguely aware that the Islamist barbarians were in the deserts of the Middle East, in the mountains of Afghanistan and Pakistan, and in the troubled Horn of Africa, destabilizing dictatorships, executing or enslaving “infidels,” and raiding villages in countries with unpronounceable names. But the Muslim world seemed far away, remote, and irrelevant to our daily lives. Then came the 9/11 attacks—and everything changed.

On Monday night, September 10, 2001, Americans went to bed feeling safe, confident of the future, and invulnerable. On Tuesday morning, September 11, 2001, they woke up to a very different reality. The world had become a dangerous place, overshadowed by the smoke billowing from the mortally wounded towers of the World Trade Center. Without warning, America had become vulnerable to the rage of the barbarians.

Soon the terrorists were emerging out of nowhere, unleashing senseless death and destruction on our nation. A 2002 attack at Los Angeles International Airport killed two people and injured four others. In 2006, a Muslim extremist drove an SUV into a crowd of pedestrians in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, to “avenge the deaths of Muslims around the world.”11 Later that year, a Pakistani American shot six people, killing one, at a Jewish community center in Seattle. In 2009, a Muslim extremist killed a military recruiter and wounded another in Little Rock. Later that same year, a Muslim US Army psychiatrist opened fire on unarmed soldiers at Fort Hood, Texas, killing thirteen and wounding twenty-nine.

On April 15, 2013, the Boston Marathon was marred by a terror bombing that killed three (including an eight-year-old boy) and injured more than 260 people. The killers were two Islamist, Chechen brothers who had lived in the United States for more than a decade. The following year, an American-born convert to Islam carried out a gruesome hatchet attack on New York City police, who shot and killed him. In December 2015, two Islamists, a husband and wife, carried out a mass shooting at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, California, where one of them was employed, leaving fourteen dead and twenty-two injured. In June 2016, an American-born son of Afghan immigrants swore allegiance to ISIS and massacred forty-nine people in a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida.

In 1982, when I wrote my first book, I considered calling it The Barbarians Are Coming. I could not write such a book today. It is far too late for such a title. The barbarians are not merely coming. They are here. They’re over the drawbridge, across the moat, and within the city.


Today, the barbarians occupy our cultural citadels. They are inside every fortress of Western culture. Some of those who would tear down our civilization are in our legislatures, making laws. Some sit on our school boards. Some teach in our classrooms and lecture in our seminaries. Some even preach from our pulpits.

In October 2015, for example, First Community Church of Columbus, Ohio, invited Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, founder of the Cordoba Initiative, to deliver a series of weekend lectures, including two Sunday morning services.12 The name of the Cordoba Initiative is significant: Córdoba is a city in southern Spain where Muslim forces defeated Christian Spaniards in AD 711. The Moors called the city Qurtubah and turned the Catholic basilica into a mosque. The city did not return to Christian rule until the Reconquista in 1236. If the Cordoba Initiative is devoted to interfaith understanding, then why did Imam Rauf name his organization after the site of an Islamic conquest?

In June 2016, the Presbyterian Church (USA) held its 222nd General Assembly in Portland, Oregon, and asked Muslim community leader Wajidi Said to give the invocation. He prayed, “Lead us on the straight path—the path of all the prophets: Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Moses, Jesus and Muhammad.”13 Those who are familiar with the Quran know that this prayer was actually a subtly worded insult to Christians and Jews. It is drawn from the Fatihah, the opening chapter of the Quran, and is a commonly spoken prayer in Islam:

Show us the straight path, the path of those whom Thou hast favoured; not the (path) of those who earn Thine anger nor of those who go astray. (Quran 1:006–007 Pickthall Translation)

Muslims understand “those who earn Thine anger” to be Jews and “those who go astray” to be Christians. The Presbyterians thought Wajidi Said prayed for interfaith understanding, but he actually invoked an insult against his Christian audience.

The barbarians are among us, and this is no mere accident of history. The Islamic religion was founded in the seventh century by Muhammad, and its goal has always been establishing a Muslim world empire, or global caliphate. Islam expanded rapidly under Umar ibn al-Khattab, Muhammad’s chief disciple and the second caliph. Umar conquered most of the Byzantine Empire and all of Persia within a few years.


Islam didn’t spread the way the Christian faith spread—by freewill evangelistic appeal. Islam was spread by the sword. It advanced as hordes of Islamic warriors conquered vast stretches of land across the Middle East, North Africa, and parts of Europe. The history of Islam and Christianity is filled with bloody struggle.

The armies of Islam swept up from North Africa to conquer much of the Iberian Peninsula (modern Spain). The Islamic armies would have advanced across Europe if they had not been defeated in 732 by the forces of Charles Martel at the Battle of Tours in north-central France. Historian Victor Davis Hanson called the Battle of Tours “a landmark battle that marked the high tide of the Muslim advance into Europe.”14 By the end of the tenth century, the Islamic Empire was in decline.

The religious-political-military system of Islam enjoyed a resurgence from the fifteenth to eighteenth centuries in the form of the Ṣafavid dynasty in Iran, the Mughal dynasty in India, and the Ottoman Empire in Turkey. Islam conquered vast regions of Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. Millions converted to Islam, either by choice or by subjugation. Constantinople, a fortress of Christianity, fell to the Ottomans in 1453 and became Istanbul, the Ottoman capital.

In Muslim-conquered lands, Christian boys were taken from their parents and reared as Muslims; then they were made to serve the armies of Islam. Christian churches became mosques. Islam continued its advance until 1683, when the Ottomans reached the center of Europe and laid siege to the gates of Vienna. The siege lasted two months.

On September 11, 1683, in the Battle of Vienna, defenders of the Holy Roman Empire under King John III Sobieski of Poland engaged and defeated the Ottomans. That day, the Ottoman Empire ceased to be a threat to Christendom. That victory saved Western civilization from destruction.



On Sale
Mar 7, 2017
Page Count
240 pages
Worthy Books

Michael Youssef, PhD

About the Author

Michael Youssef, Ph.D., is the founder and president of Leading the Way with Dr. Michael Youssef, a worldwide ministry that leads the way for people living in spiritual darkness to discover the light of Christ through the creative use of media and on-the-ground ministry teams. His weekly television and radio programs are broadcast more than 3,800 times per week in twenty-one languages in 190 countries. He is also the founding pastor of The Church of the Apostles (over 3,000 members) in Atlanta, Georgia.

Learn more about this author