What does the Bible say about Saint Michael?

Saint Michael the Archangel is mentioned only four times in Scripture. Twice in Daniel (10:13 ff. and 12:1), where he is the special guardian of the chosen people of Israel, once in Jude (5:9) disputing with the devil over the body of Moses, and once in Revelation (12:7–9), where he defends the Mother of Christ and the Church by fighting against Satan and his demons.

St Michael Raphael

Saint Michael the Archangel

Saint Michael also plays an important role in apocryphal books such as in the ‘Assumption of Moses’, in ‘Enoch’, and in the ‘Ascension of Isaiah.’

In these books, Michael appears as the great captain ‘who is set over the best part of mankind’. This tradition gives way to the Catholic belief that Michael is the patron of Catholic armies, and also a protector of individual Christians against the devil. Tradition also assigns him the role of leading the soul to God at the hour of death for judgment – something mentioned in the Offertory of the Roman Mass for the Dead {Signifer S. Michael repraesentet eas in lucemsanctam} until the liturgical revisions of 1970.

The feast day of September 29 apparently comes from the dedication of basilica of Saint Michael on the Via Salaria on September 30th.

Another tradition states that Saint Michael appeared to Pope Saint Gregory the Great over the Moles Hadriani (the modern day Castel di S. Angelo) while the pontiff was processing through Rome praying an end to a plague.

One more fun fact. In Egypt, the Christians believe that Saint Michael is the patron of the Nile River; that he is responsible for the tides of this great river.

Learn more about Catholic theology by becoming a Member of the New Saint Thomas Institute.

Question: Do you have a devotion to Saint Michael? Any particular devotions? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

Comments Policy: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic. If your comment contains a hyperlink to another site, your comment automatically goes into "Comments Purgatory" where it waits for release by way of moderation.