St Michael and All Angels

Sukkot, The Feast of Tabernacles

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Archangel Michael
St Michael and All Angels
Statue of Archangel Michael in Kiev, Ukraine

Public Domain

In the New Testament Michael leads God's armies against Satan's forces in the Book of Revelation, where during the war in heaven he defeats Satan. In the Epistle of Jude Michael is specifically referred to as "the archangel Michael", so I don’t know why they call him Saint here, he is an Archangel one of the 7 great Princes or Generals in command of the forces of heaven, a protector and the leader of the army of God against the forces of evil. Michael is one of only three angels mentioned by name in the Bible. Furthermore, Michael is mentioned only three times in the Old Testament (in Daniel), and twice in the New Testament (in Jude and Revelation). Nevertheless, Michael became one of the most popular of angelic figures, and there are many churches dedicated to St Michael and All Angels. The name “Michael” means “Who is like God?”

The development of the figure of Michael is part of the development of angelology in Judaism towards the end of the Old Testament period. In Daniel, Michael appears as the main angel in charge of protecting Israel. He is called the 'Prince' of Israel, which seems to be angelic rank. Michael’s role was greatly enhanced in the later Jewish and early Christian writings that were not included in the Bible. There in particular Michael appears as the vindicator of Israel and leader of the triumphant armies of God - a trait that is reflected in Revelation 12:7ff., where Michael and the angels vanquish the dragon.

Michael is also depicted in the non-canonical literature as the recording angel, and as the angel who carries the souls of the righteous into paradise. This was a theme that figures in the medieval requiem mass.

As the Archangel of Israel it seems appropriate that we honour Him during Sukkot (The Feast of Tabernacles) and remember God’s protection of Israel in the wilderness while they dwelt in tents, but also modern day Israel – take a look the Military History of modern day Israel and you know God is looking after Israel. Archangel Michael and the heavenly forces at his disposal have been working hard. As children of God, he protects us and shelters us under his wings, and the wings of angels. Today’s prayer pages reflect that it is the Sabbath of Sukkot until Sunset. Rejoice and sing Psalms.