Are Michael and Jesus the same Person?

Question: Are Michael and Jesus the same Person?Stars

“I’ve been reading over the Present Truth issues but I have not been able to find one that explains the relationship between Michael and Jesus. Does Present Truth believe Michael the Archangel and Jesus are the same Person?

“If you believe this could you explain how you came to this understanding?

“If you don’t believe this could you explain how you came to this understanding?”

Rhode Island

Answer:

Yes, we understand that Michael is a name of Jesus Christ. Many people get confused by the term archangel. They think that it refers to a high ranking angel, when in reality it means the ruler of the angels. The Greek word arcaggeloV (archangel) is a compound word made up of arcw (to rule over or reign over) and aggeloV (angels). Notice how arcw is used by Paul, when he wrote, “Esaias saith, There shall be a root of Jesse, and he that shall rise to reign over (arcw) the Gentiles; in him shall the Gentiles trust.” (Romans 15:12) The archangel is not an angel, but the ruler of the angels, Jesus Christ Himself.

The ruler of the angels appeared to Joshua outside of Jericho. Joshua asked Him who He was, and He responded, “As captain of the host of the LORD am I now come.” (Joshua 5:14) The verse continues, “And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship.” Every time in the Bible when a man fell down to worship one of God’s angels or his people, he was commanded to stop. (See Revelation 19:10; Acts 10:25, 26; 14:11-15.) Yet, when Joshua fell down to worship the ruler of the angels, he was not forbidden, but rather encouraged. “And the captain of the LORD’s host said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy. And Joshua did so.” (Joshua 5:15) This proves, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the ruler of the angels is Jesus Christ, for He alone, could be called “the captain of the LORD’s host” and also receive worship.

It is also significant that the Bible only speaks of one archangel. Some people suppose there are several, but the Bible only speaks of one, and He is always called Michael. The name Michael means, “who is like God,” a name which could not refer to a created angel, but to the only One who is “the express image” of “the invisible God.” (Hebrews 1:3; Colossians 1:15)

Practically every time Michael, the archangel, is referred to, He is spoken of in language that could only refer to Jesus Christ. Let us notice a few examples.

Revelation 12:7-9

“And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” Michael is spoken of here as the ruler of the angels, fighting against Satan. Jesus Christ has always been foremost in the fight against Satan. He is the promised seed of the woman, who came to bruise Satan’s head. He is the one who “led captivity captive,” and has “the keys of hell and of death.” (Ephesians 4:8; Revelation 1:18) He is the “captain of the host of the LORD,” who appeared to Joshua. (Joshua 5:14, 15)

Jude 1:9

“Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.” Here Michael is said to be directly involved in the resurrection of Moses, and we know that Christ is “the resurrection and the life.” (John 11:25) Also, the statement Michael makes to Satan is the very same statement Jesus Christ made to Satan when contending with him about the high priest Joshua. “And he shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD [Jesus Christ: See Exodus 3:2-4; 23:20, 21.], and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him. And the LORD said unto Satan, The LORD rebuke thee, O Satan; even the LORD that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire?” (Zechariah 3:1, 2)

1 Thessalonians 4:16

“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first.” At the voice of the archangel, the dead in Christ shall rise. Jesus said, “The dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.” (John 5:25; See also verses 28, 29)

Daniel 12:1, 2

“And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book. And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.” Here it says that Michael is the great prince that stands for the children of God. The Bible says that there is only “one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” (1 Timothy 2:5) In addition to that, He is called the great prince. Jesus Christ is “the Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6)

Some people think that Michael is just one among many princes of equal rank, because of Gabriel’s testimony in Daniel 10:13: “But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia.” Yet, a literal translation of this text says, “Michael, first of the chief heads.” (Young’s Literal Translation) Michael is said to be ruler and leader of God’s angels. (Revelation 12:7) Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, is the first in rank next to God Himself (1 Corinthians 11:3); “the head of all principality and power.” (Colossians 2:10)

Yes, based on the testimony of Scripture, Michael and Jesus Christ are the same person. Jesus Christ is the archangel, the ruler of the angels. He is not an angel by nature, but rather the divine Son of God who rules over the angels. Some people think that to affirm Michael and Jesus to be the same person somehow lowers Christ to the level of angelic beings, but that is not the case at all, rather it shows His rightful position as greater than, and ruler over, the angels of God.

Some think that it is a peculiar teaching originated by Jehovah’s Witnesses, who arose in the latter part of the nineteenth century, but it existed long before that time. Many Bible scholars down through the ages have come to the same conclusion.

“Michael the archangel, &c. By whom is meant, not a created angel, but an eternal one, the Lord Jesus Christ; as appears from his name Michael, which signifies, “who is as God”: and who is as God, or like unto him, but the Son of God, who is equal with God?” (John Gill’s Expositor on Jude 1:9, printed in 1809)

“The archangel, head or ruler of the angels, sometimes denotes Christ being the God-Man (1 Thess. 4:16 [cf. John 5:25-27]; Jude 1:9 [cf. Zech. 3:2]).”] (Zodhiates’ Complete Word Study Dictionary New Testament, definition for archangel, page 260)

I hope this helps to answer your question.

  • ounbbl

    Uh, you say, “Jesus Christ = Michael”? That’s what Jehovah’s Witnesses claim. Where does it say anywhere in the Scripture. It’s one of futile human interpretations and doctrines. Why did not God simply say ‘I will send a Michael as Messiah to deliver Israel’ and get over with all the problems (seen in the past history)? So, how does an angel change into a human being and person?

    BTW, there are three named archangels in O.T. – Michael, Gabriel, Raphael (+ another named one outside the Scripture).

    • Lynnford Beachy

      Thank you for sharing ounbbl. Actually, the Bible only mentions one archangel. He is called, “the archangel.” The term is only used twice in the Bible: 1 Thessalonians 4:16; Jude 1:9. Gabriel is mentioned four times in the Bible, but never referred to as archangel. Raphael is not mentioned at all in the Bible, but only in the Apocrypha. Biblically, there is only one archangel the “chief of the angels” (Thayer’s Greek Lexicon). He is named Michael, a name which means, “Who is like God” (Thayer’s Greek Lexicon). So according to the Bible there is One, who is like God, and who is the ruler of the angels. This explains why the Bible says, “Michael and his angels” (Revelation 12:7).

      There is a term used in the Old Testament that is equivalent to “archangel.” It is, “captain of the host of the LORD.” It is found in Joshua 5:14, which says, in context, “And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and, behold, there stood a man over against him with his sword drawn in his hand: and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, Art thou for us, or for our adversaries? And he said, Nay; but [as] captain of the host of the LORD am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my lord unto his servant? And the captain of the LORD’S host said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy. And Joshua did so” (Joshua 5:13-15). The ruler of the angels allowed Joshua to worship Him, and even told Joshua to do a better job by taking his shoes off. One of God’s angels would not have allowed this to happen (Revelation 19:10; 22:8, 9). This had to be Jesus Christ, the divine Son of God, who is worthy of worship (Hebrews 1:6).

      Jesus is the one who best fits the name, “Michael (Who is like God).” He is “the express image of His person” (Hebrews 1:3). He is also the commander in chief over the angels, so He is rightly called “archangel (ruler of the angels).” He is not an angelic being, but the ruler of them. I hope this clarifies things.

  • Seth

    Daniel 10:13 KJV “… but, lo, Michael [Heb. “who is like God”], one [Heb. “one,” or “first”] of the chief [Heb. “first,” or “primary”] princes [Heb. “prince,” “ruler,” “leader,”]…”

    If we look at this and apply the Hebrew definitions from the Strong’s Concordance, we get, “but, lo, Michael, one of the primary/chief rulers…” Who are the chief or primary rulers? God, the Father; God, the Son (Jesus Christ, aka Michael), and the Holy Spirit. It’s talking about the triune Godhead.

    God the Father has variou names. God the Son has various names. God the Holy Spirit has various names. These names are given to shed light on their character. God the Father is also called “Lord God Almighty,” for example. God the Son is also called Jesus, (“Jehovah is salvation”), the Messiah/Christ (“Annointed One”), The Alpha and Omega, (first and last letters of Greek alphabet signifying is is our beginning and end from everlasting to everlasting), and Michael (“Who is like God”).

    This in no way states, as JWs do, that Jesus Christ and Michael the Archangel refer to created beings. For nothing was created except by Christ. Just as the archbishop is not a bishop, but the leader of bishops, so the archangel is not an angel but the leader of angels.

    It’s simply another title of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is God the Son come down to earth in human form to help in our affliction. In like manner, Michael, the archangel, is God the Son in angelic form to help the angels when they fought Satan and the 1/3 of the heavenly host.