Who is Michael the Archangel? 

Who is Michael? Some individuals and groups (such as the Seventh-day Adventists and Jehovah’s Witnesses, and others) insist that Michael is Jesus. Though Michael has similarities with Jesus, Michael is not Jesus for the following reasons.

  • Some say Michael must be Jesus because he has his angels. But if Satan, a fallen angelic being, has his angels (Revelation 12:7), cannot Michael, an unfallen angelic being, have his angels?
  • Some say Michael must be Jesus, because his name means “who is like God” or One like God. But if this were a title of Jesus, it would argue against His deity, not for it because it would say that Jesus is like God, but not God. However, Jesus is God, and not just like God (John 1:1; Hebrews 1:8).
  • Some say Michael must be Jesus, because he is called the archangel (Jude 9), which means leader or prince among the angels, and they say that only Jesus is the leader of the angels. But we know from Daniel 10:13, 10:20 and 10:21 that Michael is “one of the chief princes”, meaning he is one among others. Jesus is not the foremost from a group of others. The Bible calls Jesus “King of Kings” and “Lord of Lords.” (Revelation 17:14; 19:16) This title indicates absolute sovereignty and authority and is a far cry from being a foremost prince who is one among a group of equals.
  • Paul refers to “a voice of an archangel” in 1 Thessalonians 4:16 in a way that presupposes other archangels. Translations like the ESV and NKJV uses “an archangel,” and others like the NASB put “the” in italics so that it is clear to the reader that the word is not in Greek.
  • Jesus is referred to as a “prince”, “the Son of God”, but so are angels referred to as “sons of God”, and Satan is referred as a “prince” (Ephesians 2:2). Yet this does not mean that Jesus, angels or Michael are the same in spite of similar titles. Jesus is more than a prince.
  • SDA theology presents Michael as the only archangel. However, Michael cannot be the only archangel, as Ellen White presents Satan as another archangel: “Rebellion originated with Satan. Notwithstanding the exalted position which he occupied among the heavenly host, he became dissatisfied because he was not accorded supreme honor. Hence he questioned God’s purposes and impugned his justice. He bent all his powers to allure the angels from their allegiance. The fact that he was an ARCHANGEL, glorious and powerful, enabled him to exert a mighty influence”. (source: https://m.egwwritings.org/it/book/820.4726#4738).
  • Ellen White says, “Christ as High Priest within the veil so immortalized Calvary, that though He liveth unto God, He dies continually to sin and thus if any man sin, he has an Advocate with the Father. He arose from the tomb enshrouded with a cloud of angels in wondrous power and glory,–the Deity and humanity combined. He took in His grasp the world over which Satan claimed to preside as his lawful territory, and by His wonderful work in giving His life, He restored the whole race omen to favor with God. The songs of triumph echoed and re-echoed through the worlds. Angel and archangel, cherubim and seraphim, sang the triumphant song at the amazing achievement.–Manuscript 50, 1900.  {7ABC 485.1}.
  • As per the above Ellen White statement, it would have been odd indeed that, if there is only one archangel, and he is none other than Christ himself, he would sing “the triumphant song” at his own “amazing achievement”.
  • Some say that Michael must be Jesus because Paul says that at the second coming, the Lord will call His people with the voice of an archangel and the trumpet of God (1 Thessalonians 4:16). But Jesus can use His voice as well as the voice of an archangel to call out for His people without being that angel, just as much as God can use a trumpet to sound out a call without being the trumpet.
  • Pre-incarnate Jesus appears in the Old Testament as “the Angel (Messenger) of the Lord”, and perhaps even as the “Captain of the Host” (Joshua 5:13-15), but none of those verses tell us that “the Angel of the Lord” is Michael.
  • In Zechariah 3:2, the Angel of the Lord (pre-incarnate Christ) defers the rebuking of Satan to God the Father. Similarly, Michael does the same in Jude 1:9. There is no necessity to conclude both are the same individuals, simply because Michael and Angel of the Lord defer their rebuking. Another time, Jesus rebuked the devil directly (Matthew 17:18).
  • The angel Michael is often associated with spiritual battle (Daniel 10:13, Daniel 10:21, Jude 1:9, and Revelation 12:7). Since Michael is called the archangel (Jude 1:9), he is Satan’s true opposite. Satan is not the opposite of Jesus; he is the opposite of Michael, this high-ranking angel.
  • Even if Michael, a very high-ranking angel, had certain similarities with Jesus, and did certain similar things, that does not make Jesus to be Michael. Michael is not to be identified with Christ, any more than any other of the great angels in the Bible. Such identification would confuse hopelessly the persons in the heavenly scene (Revelation 12).

See our Revelations commentary to learn more about Michael (see Chapter 12).

1 thought on “Who is Michael the Archangel? 

  1. Walter Hasselbrack

    Jesus became man to meet man where he is. Jesus became an Angel to meet Angels where they ere. Lucifer became Jealous of Christ(Creator) as an Angel. Lucifer saw Jesus as an Angel not as God but He was God the creator of Earth.Lucifer had northing to offer because He could not create!

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