Throughout their existence, the Spanish territories in Asia faced multiple external threats. The local Spanish government had to struggle with Chinese warlords, Japanese pirates, European competitors, and Muslim slave raiders. These perils changed over time, as did the Spanish (re)actions and the way in which these threats were depicted. This paper addresses the diverse representations of outside threats to the Spanish colonial rule in the Philippines and the manner in which the islands were constructed as a colony under permanent threat. Thereby, it focusses on reports, chronicles, and other writings of Catholic friars who were stationed in the Philippines in the 18th century. In analyzing their way of describing the adversaries it displays how knowledge about the threats was created in the Spanish Empire. Likewise, it sheds light on possible alterations and different prioritization, in particular after landmark events such the British occupation in 1762.