Is Michael Jesus Christ?
By Robert K. Sanders
Yes, according to Ellen G. White (EGW), the Seventh-day Adventist's prophet, and also taught by the Jehovah's Witnesses. Evangelical Christianity has rejected the teaching that Michael is Christ, because it is not Biblical. It may surprise you to learn that there are only five references in the entire Bible to Michael, and not one reference names Michael as Jesus Christ. We will look at each one of them.
Dan 10:13 (NIV) But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia.
EGW: "For three weeks Gabriel wrestled with the powers of darkness, seeking to counteract the influences at work on the mind of Cyrus; and before the contest closed, Christ Himself came to Gabriel's aid." Prophets and Kings, p.572
The Bible identifies Michael as the one that came to Gabriel's aid and Ellen White contends that it was Christ that came to Gabriel's aid.
Notice: Michael "is one" of the chief princes, which places him in a group of other chief princes. How large that group is we are not told. Michael is in a group of equals. Michael could not be Christ, as Christ is not described as one of equals. Christ is described in John 3:16, as "one and only Son." The Greek for "only" is, "monogenes," one of a kind or unique one. Again this shows that Michael cannot be Christ.
Dan 10:21 (NIV) ...but first I will tell you what is written in the Book of Truth. (No one supports me against them except Michael, your prince.
Dan 12:1 (NIV) “At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people—everyone whose name is found written in the book—will be delivered.
Notice: The three references to Michael in Daniel are: "one of the chief princes," "your prince," and "the great prince." Christ is never referred to, as one of the chief princes, your prince or the great prince in the Bible. Jesus is called, "Prince of peace," — Isa. 9:6, and "Prince and Savior" — Acts 5:31. As one can see, the titles of Michael and Jesus are not the same.
Jude 1:9 (NIV) But even the archangel Michael, when he was disputing with the devil about the body of Moses, did not dare to bring a slanderous accusation against him, but said, “The Lord rebuke you!”
2 Pet 2:11 (NIV) ...yet even angels, although they are stronger and more powerful, do not bring slanderous accusations against such beings in the presence of the Lord.
Michael an angel, did the work of angels as outlined in 2 Peter, as he did not bring a slanderous accusation against the devil.
Jude does not identify the archangel Michael, as Christ. But what is an archangel?
From Strong's Dictionary, 743. "archaggelos, ar-khang'-el-os; from G757 and G32; a chief angel:—archangel."
Archangel means a chief angel. Michael therefore is a chief angel. Jesus is not a chief angel, or a created being, but Commander over the angels. He is Lord of Lords and King of Kings.
Michael said to the devil, "the Lord rebuke you." Michael as archangel (chief angel) a created being, does not have authority to rebuke the devil in disputing over the body of Moses, so he invokes the Lord's name.
EGW: "Satan the tempter had claimed the body of Moses because of his sin; but Christ the Saviour brought him forth from the grave." Desire of Ages, p.421.
EGW: Moses passed through death, but Michael came down and gave him life before his body had seen corruption. Satan tried to hold the body, claiming it as his; but Michael resurrected Moses and took him to heaven. Satan railed bitterly against God, denouncing Him as unjust in permitting his prey to be taken from him; but Christ did not rebuke His adversary, though it was through his temptation that the servant of God had fallen. He meekly referred him to His Father, saying, "The Lord rebuke thee." Early Writings, p. 164.
Ellen makes non-Biblical claims about Moses' body such as; Michael gave Moses life before his body had seen corruption. Jesus restored Lazarus to life after his body started decaying and after four days in the grave. Why did God believe it was necessary for the "remnant church" to have this startling piece of news, that Moses was resurrected before his body started to decay?
In another confrontation with Satan
Zech 3:1-2 (NIV) Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right side to accuse him. The LORD said to Satan, “The LORD rebuke you, Satan! The LORD, who has chosen Jerusalem, rebuke you! Is not this man a burning stick snatched from the fire?”
Joshua is standing before the angel of the Lord. The term, "angel of the LORD" used in the O T is often seen as Christ. In this text without a doubt, it is the Lord that rebukes Satan. The Bible never refers to the Lord as the archangel Michael. Michael is never called "the angel of the LORD."
Voice of the archangel
1 Thess 4:16 (NIV) For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.
Jesus comes "with" the voice of the archangel. Doesn't this prove that Jesus is Michael? No. The fact is all the angels accompany Jesus at his Second Coming, which would include Michael the archangel. Thus Michael's voice will be heard, along with the trumpet call of the Lord. The Lord will have the voice of the archangel which will give an archangelic shout that will raise the dead.
2 Thess 1:7 (NIV) ...and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well. This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels.
Jamieson-Faussett-Brown Commentary on the Whole Bible
Verse 9. Michael, the archangel—Nowhere in Scripture is the plural used, “archangels”; but only ONE, “archangel.” The only other passage in the New Testament where it occurs, is 1 Thessalonians 4:16, where Christ is distinguished from the archangel, with whose voice He shall descend to raise the dead; they therefore err who confound Christ with Michael. The name means, Who is like God? In Daniel 10:13 he is called “One (‘the first,’ Margin) of the chief princes.” He is the champion angel of Israel. In Revelation 12:7 the conflict between Michael and Satan is again alluded to.
about the body of Moses—his literal body. Satan, as having the power of death, opposed the raising of it again, on the ground of Moses’ sin at Meribah, and his murder of the Egyptian. That Moses’ body was raised, appears from his presence with Elijah and Jesus (who were in the body) at the Transfiguration: the sample and earnest of the coming resurrection kingdom, to be ushered in by Michael’s standing up for God’s people. Thus in each dispensation a sample and pledge of the future resurrection was given: Enoch in the patriarchal dispensation, Moses in the Levitical, Elijah in the prophetical. It is noteworthy that the same rebuke is recorded here as was used by the Angel of the Lord, or Jehovah the Second Person, in pleading for Joshua, the representative of the Jewish Church, against Satan, in Zechariah 3:2; whence some have thought that also here “the body of Moses” means the Jewish Church accused by Satan, before God, for its filthiness, on which ground he demands that divine justice should take its course against Israel, but is rebuked by the Lord who has “chosen Jerusalem”: thus, as “the body of Christ” is the Christian Church, so “the body of Moses” is the Jewish Church. But the literal body is evidently here meant (though, secondarily, the Jewish Church is typified by Moses’ body, as it was there represented by Joshua the high priest); and Michael, whose connection seems to be so close with Jehovah-Messiah on the one hand, and with Israel on the other, naturally uses the same language as his Lord. As Satan (adversary in court) or the devil (accuser) accuses alike the Church collectively and “the brethren” individually, so Christ pleads for us as our Advocate. Israel’s, and all believers’ full justification, and the accuser’s being rebuked finally, is yet future. Josephus [Antiquities,4.8], states that God hid Moses’ body, lest, if it had been exposed to view, it would have been made an idol of. Jude, in this account, either adopts it from the apocryphal “assumption of Moses” (as Origen [Concerning Principalities, 3.2] thinks), or else from the ancient tradition on which that work was founded. Jude, as inspired, could distinguish how much of the tradition was true, how much false. We have no such means of distinguishing, and therefore can be sure of no tradition, save that which is in the written word.
durst not—from reverence for Satan’s former dignity (Jude 8).
railing accusation—Greek, “judgment of blasphemy,” or evil-speaking. Peter said, Angels do not, in order to avenge themselves, rail at dignities, though ungodly, when they have to contend with them: Jude says that the archangel Michael himself did not rail even at the time when he fought with the devil, the prince of evil spirits—not from fear of him, but from reverence of God, whose delegated power in this world Satan once had, and even in some degree still has. From the word “disputed,” or debated in controversy, it is plain it was a judicial contest. Jamieson-Faussett-Brown Commentary on the Whole Bible, Electronic Edition STEP Files Copyright © 2003, QuickVerse, a division of Findex.com, Inc—Permission to Quote.
(Rev 12:7 NIV) "And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back."
Michael, the chief angel, led the loyal angels to battle against the devil and his angels and was victorious. John does not identify Michael as Christ!
- "If no angel can ever be called God's Son (Hebrews 1:5)—and Jesus is in fact the Son of God—then doesn't this mean that Jesus cannot be the archangel Michael?"
- "If no angel can rule the world (Hebrews 2:5)—and if Scripture clearly says that Christ is ruler of the world (Luke 1:32-33; Revelation 19:16)—then doesn't this mean that Christ cannot be the archangel Michael?"
- The Bible does not call the archangel Michael, Christ!
- Calling Michael a created angel Christ, is bearing false witness against Christ's deity as God.
- Ellen G. White by calling Michael Christ, has made an addition to the Bible.
- Jesus would have us lift him up, not demote him to the level of a created angel.
- Jesus is not an archangel, a created being, but the Creator and head of all the Heavenly Host.
- Michael is an archangel, and one of many archangels or chief princes. (Dan 10:13 NIV) "But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia."