Michael Youssef - The Third Jihad
Eric Metaxas: What do you say except, "Wow"? Some people watching right now... by the way, my name is Eric Metaxas. Some people watching right now might think a video like that is fear mongering. "Oh, it's not that bad". The reason I'm here is because I have been persuaded, unfortunately, that it is precisely that bad. What my friend, Dr. Michael Youssef, calls the Third Jihad, the Third Jihad is something that's very real. I am persuaded that it's real, that it's a horrifying threat, and that we in the United States need to really understand it so that we can make sure, by God's grace, it doesn't happen. So I have the privilege of being here to speak with my friend, Dr. Michael Youssef. Dr. Youssef, welcome.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Thank you, Eric.
Eric Metaxas: And it's funny for me to welcome you because actually this is your program. I know that you've written books, that you're an expert on many subjects, not least Islam. Your main degree, is it sociology?
Dr. Michael Youssef: Right, sociology of religion.
Eric Metaxas: Of religion. This is something you have studied. You've written about it. A year ago, we spoke about it in another book that you wrote. What is it that makes you such an expert on this? Even though you studied it, you have a biographical background in the world of Islam.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Yeah, first 18, 19 years of my life, I lived in the Middle East and I still go to the Middle East on a regular... I have many dear friends. I have met with world leaders. These are leaders of countries, the majority Muslims, who are as much antagonistic toward Islamists and Islamist ideology, than some of the Europeans believe it or not, 'cause they know it. Now, the term third jihad is not my term, and I want to make sure that that's understood. I did not come up with that. They did in all the writings of the Islamists. Again, as you remember, we always make a distinction between Muslims, and I have many friends who are moderate Muslims, Devout, moderate, and Islamist, those who have this ideology of dominating the world and paving the way for the caliphate.
Eric Metaxas: You have lived this. You know this. You have a love for the Arab people and for Muslim people so I just want to be clear. We're not talking about that, we're talking about fanatics, people whose whole life is dedicated to a strategy. Okay, so let's back to the term "third jihad". You said it's their term.
Dr. Michael Youssef: It's their term and it's in their writings, and this is where I got it from. It's not a matter of I sat down and said, "What title I give this book"? It's what I've read in Arabic, some in English as well. People have written about it extensively...
Eric Metaxas: You read Arabic?
Dr. Michael Youssef: Yes.
Eric Metaxas: I'm very impressed.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Well, good.
Eric Metaxas: I was already impressed with you. I'm really... that's a... actually but that's a key piece, isn't? Because so much of these writings are in Arabic, and so most people who don't read Arabic, they get the white-washed version of it, right? Because the people, they're not stupid. They're not publishing in English on websites some of the things that they have in Arabic.
Dr. Michael Youssef: And I promise you that I have seen with my eyes and heard with my ears some of them that would say something in English but there will say something totally different in Arabic. How they want to appeal to Western world is different from realities that they say in their home countries. I've seen that many, many times as I travel. But the reason they call this Third Jihad is these ideologues, these Islamists who are totally committed to implementing worldwide Sharia and committed to bringing about the successor of the Prophet Muhammad, that's a Caliphate. We hear the word caliphate, caliphate, and they're not the vast majority of Muslims. They're small minority, but they're very vocal, very active in every country, and they have various strategies. So let's go back to the Third Jihad. Why is it the third? The First Jihad was around the 700s when they came all the way to France. They invaded Christian lands. They went up north Arabia to Syria, Palestine, Lebanon, and then they went west to Egypt, North Africa, and all the way to the French country.
Eric Metaxas: See, this is the history. This is why I love talking to you. Because when you look back, you see that there are things happening many years ago that are totally relevant today. When you think... even writing my own book on Martin Luther, the Muslims, they are at the gates of Vienna.
Dr. Michael Youssef: That's exactly right.
Eric Metaxas: They thought 500 years ago, all of Europe will be taken over militarily by the Muslims, and Luther thought this is the end of the world.
Dr. Michael Youssef: And that's the Second Jihad.
Eric Metaxas: And that's the Second Jihad, and it didn't go away. We're talking now, my gosh, 1,400 years ago, an effort to take over Europe; a number of years later around 1,500, another effort to take over, and it is by the grace of God rebuffed and it's just, in a historical terms, it's just a few years later now, the same thing is happening the third time.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Which is going to be the final push to occupy Europe and bring the Sharia into Europe. Now, there's also talk now. They're saying, "Well, if our brethren in Europe have this ideology, why can't we, the Muslims or Islamist in America, do the same for the United States"? And we want to call it the Islamic States of America.
Eric Metaxas: The Islamic States of America.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Right, and it's right there in their writings.
Eric Metaxas: Well, part of what's that... there's so much that's interesting to me here. First of all, we live in a very liberal country, and I say liberal in the positive sense of the word.
Dr. Michael Youssef: I understand.
Eric Metaxas: We are tolerant to others, okay? "I'm a Christian. I don't approve of sex outside of marriage between a man and a wife, but I am tolerant and I love people who disagree with me and I don't want to subjugate them. I don't want to destroy their lives. I have a point of view," and we live in a country we get along. But what you have pointed out to me in the past is that people with a different ideology, they take advantage of the ideas of tolerance, these beautiful American ideas, and they cynically exploit them in a way to kind of bully people into shutting up, into not giving up position. Now, we've seen, the Islamists have done this very successfully in England and in Europe and they are also doing it here. I mean, I know this is true and this is part of what you call the Third Jihad.
Dr. Michael Youssef: And it's multi-pronged. I mean, they say, "We're going to use our investments, billions if not trillions of dollars invested in Europe, we're going to use the birth rate because we are increasing by five or six a year while they're negative in the European sense".
Eric Metaxas: That's a big thing.
Dr. Michael Youssef: It's strategy, yeah.
Eric Metaxas: The very liberal Europeans, and you see this here mostly among politically liberal people that they kind of think, "Well, I don't want to bring children into this messed up world," or "I don't want to be burdened with children". Meanwhile, Muslims have precisely the opposite attitude. They're having many children.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Right, and having four wives. And while polygamy officially illegal in Europe, it is winked at on the part of European government, including England.
Eric Metaxas: Okay, now... but this is another, this gets to the heart of it, right? In other words, there's a cynicism here because the Muslims are using the fear of the West. In other words, the Western leaders do not have the guts to take it on. So they will officially say polygamy and bigamy has always been illegal and it's still illegal, but they do nothing to enforce it.
Dr. Michael Youssef: I know. I was in the House of Lords, hosted by senior members of the House of Lords, my wife and I, just a few weeks ago, and when the time came for us to talk openly about this, they were kind of lowering their voices. We are in this incredible, incredible institution, and they were kind of speaking softly because they don't want to create problems.
Eric Metaxas: For themselves.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Yeah, and so part of their strategy, the Islamist strategy, is to penetrate and infiltrate political parties. They are infiltrating the Labor Party, and they're infiltrating the Democratic Party. In the United States, for example, we have three Muslim women, and for the first time in 181 years in the history of the Congress where the law says, "We do not have a head cover". But because of an Islamist elected member of Congress in the year 2018, and she wears the hijab, they're going to change the law and they say, "Now wearing a hijab in Congress, because of this Congress woman who's going to swear on the Quran and so forth, we need to change the law".
Eric Metaxas: In America, anyone is allowed to be elected. In other words, I don't care if someone's elected and they want to wear a hijab or whatever. That's not the issue. The question is, is there fidelity, first and foremost, to the Constitution or to something else?
Dr. Michael Youssef: Yeah, Constitution, I mean, if you really put a gun to their head, they say, "Yes, it has to come second to Sharia". because, I mean, that's the whole reason they're motivated to run, they're motivated to make speeches, they're motivated to infiltrate political parties. It's because they say, "Yeah, yeah, we believe the Constitution". But then if you press them, they will say, "Well, second to the Sharia".
Eric Metaxas: Right, but see, I would say the Bible comes before the Constitution, except, except the Bible does not contradict the Constitution and the Constitution and the values come from Scripture.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Now you put your finger on that right now. Yes. Yeah, that's the difference.
Eric Metaxas: It has scriptural values that respect everyone, but Sharia law and the Quran, both: Do not.
Dr. Michael Youssef: That's right, and that's why so many Christians who really love this country have absolutely no qualms. In fact, they are supportive. They're defenders of the Constitution because they know how it was written. They know the ethos behind it, the heart behind it, the knowledge of the Scripture behind it. But you cannot do that in Islamists who are really committed, first and foremost, to the Sharia and the Sharia says, "There is no God but Allah". And therefore, you know, we are all the infidels. And so that is the core of their reasoning why they're infiltrating the political parties and why are they're getting involved and why they want to change slowly.
Eric Metaxas: Isn't part of this... if the gospel is well represented in the United States, I mean, in a time of revival where most Americans love Jesus and believe in the Bible, we won't have these problems. But what's happened, let's say at least in the last 50 years, is that liberals have increasingly moved away to say, "We don't want the church to have anything to do with our politics". And so by making a secular political world, you open the door to Islamists taking over.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Sure, you create a vacuum. And who is going to fill the vacuum? Force. Because once you have a weak environment, who's going to be the victor is the one who's going to use force, the one who's going to bring fear into people's hearts and minds and then they have to acquiesce to them. I'll give you an example, just example. Happened back in end of October, beginning of November, 2018. I was in Europe, and this is the thing just literally brought me out of my seat. At the same week that the Supreme Court of Pakistan had exonerated a woman, who for 8 years being on death row accused of insulting Islam, they set her free. That same week, the European Supreme Court has ruled that it is a crime to insult Islam or the prophet of Islam, the European Supreme Court the same week. I said this is the most amazing thing that I've ever seen in my 70-year lifetime.
Eric Metaxas: My passion is to communicate to everyone I can the values of the Scripture and the values of the founders of the United States of America. All those values come out of the Scripture, and even those founders, you talked about David Horowitz. Not all of those founders were theologically orthodox historical Christians. But even Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson understood that without these fundamental biblical values, you can never have American style, self-government and freedom. It's not possible.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Absolutely.
Eric Metaxas: Now, Greece is traditionally a very Christian Greek Orthodox country, and you're telling me that because they're in the EU, there's a law now in Greece that they cannot say something negative against the prophet of Islam?
Dr. Michael Youssef: And it is by the Supreme Court of Europe so that there will be no other recourse. You have to... it becomes a law of the European Union.
Eric Metaxas: This is the end of everything we have believed in, and will Americans understand that we're on the verge of this here? This is chilling to me.
Dr. Michael Youssef: You know, I don't want to alarm people for the sake of alarming. I just want God's people to start praying and get this thing seriously. I just heard an agnostic woman from England came here, gave lectures. She was on Fox News, and then she went to give a major lecture and she said, "I am here to warn you, Americans. Do not follow our footsteps because in England, we have no way back and I'm hoping that you do not emulate us".
Eric Metaxas: It's a battle.
Dr. Michael Youssef: It is a battle.
Eric Metaxas: And I think the question is, do we have the will to fight? When you talk about the Third Jihad, this is a fight, whether we want it or not. A jihad is war. I lay this at the feet not just of the elected leaders, but at the pastors of America. They are meant to be the prophets of God speaking to the people of God. They don't talk about this.
Dr. Michael Youssef: No, they are more concerned about their own popularity, and I say that with deep sorrow that you're exactly right. And the pastors now said, "Well, you know, we need to love everybody". Of course, we love everybody. Loving doesn't stop the truth from being proclaimed. The truth is the truth is the truth. Now we proclaim it lovingly or we proclaim it, we don't go out and kill people and say you got to believe. No, of course not. But don't be quiet about the truth. Speak it and speak it in love, but speak it boldly. So, I agree with you 100%.
Eric Metaxas: It seems to me the only solution is revival in America, revival in Jesus so that the people of God will be on fire for him and will live for him. Otherwise, you really have a dead church.
Dr. Michael Youssef: You're right. That is the only hope, that is the only answer, but God will respond with a revival to faithfulness on the part of his children. If his children become faithful in prayer and faithful in giving and faithful in interceding and faithful in standing up and be counted, God will respond. It is my plea with the believers. I'm speaking to the choir, I'm speaking to the believers. Somebody said to me, "You're preaching to the choir". Yes, stop practicing and get out and sing.
Eric Metaxas: If you really believe in Jesus, you have to stand for the truth and you have to be unafraid of the cost because God commands us to trust him.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Absolutely, and... 'cause we... you don't have to go back long time in history. Before our own eyes today in Europe where all the churches that once packed with people, there are now tourists coming in... it's a museum, and so that's what's going to happen unless we, in America, lead as we've done many times before and by God's grace and by God's power, by God's strength that we can stand up and say, "We're not here to condemn you, European, for failing but we are here, we want to help you. We want you to stand with us so we can stand together". And right now, we're having the tension in the Islamic world about who is going to lead the next Jihad. Who's going to lead that Third Jihad? Who's going to be the next caliph? Of course the man in Turkey wants to be the one.
Eric Metaxas: Erdogan wants to be the one?
Dr. Michael Youssef: He actually wants to bring back the Ottoman Empire.
Eric Metaxas: Okay, now you're speaking to a Greek. I know because I was taught as a boy in Greek Orthodox Parochial school that the Muslims, not the Turks, it was the Muslims, who happened to be Turkish, took over the Greek Bastion, the historical city of Istanbul. Constantinople became Istanbul, and my fellow Greeks for 400 years were subjugated horribly, enslaved. This is not the mythical past. This was ended in 1821. If we don't rise to this battle, I just want to say in the boldest terms, God will hold us responsible. This is the battle to which the Lord is calling us today.
Dr. Michael Youssef: I do not want my grandchildren long after I'm gone to say, "Why didn't you say something? You knew about this? Why did grandfather, who understood these things, why didn't he say something"? That's why I'm speaking. Not only that, but I'm going to have the audience of one. When God is going to look me in the eye, "Why didn't you do something? I gave you the resources. I gave you the opportunities". And I think he going to say that to all of us, not just me. And because a lot of people said, "Yeah, yeah, yeah. Go, Michael. We're behind you". No, you need to be the one. Every one of us need to be the one who would take a stand and absolutely uncompromised the gospel truth.
Eric Metaxas: The Third Jihad is real. If we don't do something about this, we are going to lose everything. Our churches will become mosques in the United States of America. It chills me to say it, but it's why I'm here, Dr. Youssef. I just, I want to say that in 2050, which is a few years from now, we will have that in the United States for real. Most Americans have no idea.
Dr. Michael Youssef: It is time for us to vote the right way and make sure that the candidates understand the score, and then that's just part of our stewardship as citizens. Above all stewardship as believers is to not only pray, but to go out and actively evangelize. We have freedom to tell, so, until now anyway, to tell Muslims, "Come to Christ. Jesus loves you". Who is doing this?
Eric Metaxas: I really think that this is the curse of prosperity; that in America, our eyes have been taken off of the ball. God says the time is short. God says, "If you don't do these things, these things will happen". The Lord has been using you as a prophet, especially on this issue. So I hope you don't mind if I transition. We have some good news. Folks, all that we've been talking about, the Third Jihad, it's in a book. How terrific is it that Dr. Youssef has taken everything we've talked about and much more and put it in a book form? This is the big surprise, right? We've been talking about this, but how wonderful it is that in this book it talks about everything in much greater detail, obviously, than we were able to cover right now? And you can get a copy of the book. Dr. Youssef, tell us about the book.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Everything is documented; the term Third Jihad, the term Islamic States of America. All of these are documented from the Imams who have said these things, have written these things, not from evangelical pastors or Christian believers. It's from their mouths that I am bringing this truth to the public so they know what's going on. Don't close your eyes. Don't close your eyes. Don't just say, "Well, you know, I'm glad Michael is doing it". No, you need to get involved, everyone, every person who's watching.
Eric Metaxas: I'm thrilled you've written this book because honestly we need to be educated on this. The time is so short. Dr. Youssef, I don't know anybody but you who has the background to give us the facts on this. Otherwise, it just sounds like fear mongering. This is real. This is true. My ultimate thing is Christians have to get radical. There's a joy in being radical for Jesus, in being radical for the truth. In fact, the Lord created us to live that way, and if we're not living that way, we're not living as he made us to live. That's the joy of serving him. Congratulations on "The Third Jihad". Any final words before we go?
Dr. Michael Youssef: I just hope and pray that every single person, not a percentage of those who are watching or listening, would call and get this book. We tried to make this book available to as many people as possible. So we are saying, "For a gift of any amount". so that we're not putting a price on it. It's in the bookstores, it's in Amazon. You can get it anywhere. But if you would call or write to us or get online, we want to get that book in your hand. And again, when you read this book, just like my friend who's a prominent Christian leader in England, he said, "What persuaded me to know this is the truth is the documentation". This is not just an emotional book or fear-mongering book. Let me tell you something. I fear not anybody. I don't fear Islam. I don't fear, all these homophobe and Islamophobe, and all those terminologies don't affect me. I promise you that because I love Jesus, and therefore he is the one who gives us courage, not courage that comes from ginning courage from within ourselves. If that was the case, I would be the greatest coward on the face of the earth. But only Jesus can give you that courage, and he'll give it to you if you ask for it. And this book is going to help you, it's going to motivate you. It's not going to depress you. It's not going to discourage you. It's actually going to motivate you to be an active believer in the Lord Jesus Christ. The days of pure warming Christians are over. Now it's time act. Call or write, get online, get that book.
Eric Metaxas: And to end on the best note there is, anytime we're talking about Jesus, there is hope.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Amen.
Eric Metaxas: This is good news. I just want to say to folks that you hear all this stuff, at the end of the day this is an opportunity, a glorious opportunity to participate in God's plan for America and for the world. If this is what he calls us to, it's his plan that he has the victory through his church, and by participating in this, this is the greatest hope. Our hope is in Jesus. He is our only hope. We treasure that, we praise him for that, and we thank you for listening and to knowing that God has a plan for you in this. Dr. Youssef, thank you so much. God bless you.
Dr. Michael Youssef: Thank you. Thank you for coming down.
Eric Metaxas: Thank you.