The Berbers of Libya
About this People Group
- Population: 267,000
- Language: Arabic, Amazigh
- Religion: Islam
Having been forced by the Arabs to leave the more prosperous regions of Libya, the Berbers are now numerous in Morocco and Algeria. Those who remain in Libya make up the second largest ethnic group and they live among the plateaus and hills of the Jebel Nefusa and in the Oasis of Fezzan in southwest Libya.
Since the overthrow of Gadaffi, there has been a new recognition of Amazigh languages, and a resurgence of cultural expression and ethnic pride. They herd sheep and goats, and in the more humid eastern regions, they work on large olive and fig plantations. Following autumn rains, they also plant wheat and barley in the neighboring plains. In order to use water and soil resources more efficiently, Berbers have built hundreds of soil and stone dams. Berber villages in Libya are small and difficult to reach. The people live underground in cave-like houses carved vertically or horizontally into the soft limestone and marlstone.
Most Libyan Berbers are Sunni Muslims who belong to a tiny Islamic sect called Ibadaya that originated in the seventh century. As far as we know there has not yet been a witness historically to this ethnic group.
How to Pray
- Ask God to provide evangelistic tools and equipment needed to reach them both spiritually and geographically.
- Ask the Holy Spirit to soften the hearts of the Berber toward Christians.
- Pray that God will open the hearts of Libya’s governmental leaders to the Gospel.
- Take authority over the spiritual principalities and powers that are keeping the Berber of Libya bound.
- Ask the Lord to raise up strong local churches among the Berber of Libya.