Michael (Who Is Like To God?)
Michael, whose name translates to “Who is like to God?”, is known as a warrior in the celestial realm. He is a defender against evil forces and a protector of the faithful. He is recognized in Scripture on four occasions:
In Daniel 10:13, where he assists Gabriel.
Daniel 12, marking his role in the end times.
The Epistle of St. Jude, revealing his dispute with the devil over Moses’ body.
In Revelation 12:7, highlighting his leadership in the battle against the dragon.
Christian tradition ascribes to Michael four key roles: battling Satan, saving souls from evil especially at death, being the champion for both Jews and Christians, and ushering souls to judgment. While his celestial rank varies among interpretations, many believe he’s the prince of all angels.
Michael’s imagery in art often depicts him as a warrior defeating a dragon, symbolizing Satan. He sometimes holds scales or the book of life, underlining his role in judgment.
Gabriel (The Power of God)
Gabriel is notably known as the angel of the Incarnation and Consolation. He is depicted in the Bible four times:
Daniel 8, interpreting Daniel’s vision.
Daniel 9, communicating the prophecy of the “seventy weeks.”
Foretelling the birth of John the Baptist to Zachary in Luke 1 v8ff.
Announcing the birth of Jesus to Mary in Luke 1:26.
Though Gabriel’s name appears only twice in the New Testament, tradition often attributes to him other biblical appearances, like the angel who strengthened Jesus in the garden. Though commonly referred to as an archangel, there are interpretations based on his and Raphael’s declarations that they might hold a higher celestial rank.
Raphael (God has healed)
Raphael is prominently featured in the Book of Tobias from the Septuagint, where he accompanies young Tobias on an adventure, eventually revealing himself as an archangel. His main roles include offering prayers to the Lord on behalf of humans and healing.
Though only Michael and Gabriel are named in the New Testament, many believe Raphael is the “angel of the Lord” from John 5, who stirs healing waters at Bethzatha.
The three archangels, each with distinct roles, feature prominently in Christian teachings and traditions, emphasizing protection, communication, and healing. They’ve inspired countless interpretations and remain significant in faith practices today.