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The Archangel Michael
Spiritual warfare and physical battles
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 6:12).
We must recognize the fact that we face a great evil in this world. But the power of God’s goodness is greater, and his angels are messengers, servants, and executors of his will. This is clearly seen in the battle between Michael, the Archangel, and Satan the fallen angel.
Lucifer has become a proper name for Satan or the Devil, but this is taken from the use of Latin for the planet Venus and is the same Greek word phosphorus "light-bringer" or eosphorus "dawn-bringer.” In the Bible, this passage refers to Satan, “How you have fallen from heaven, morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! You said in your heart, “I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of Mount Zaphon. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.” But you are brought down to the realm of the dead, to the depths of the pit” (Isaiah 14:12-15). Paul refers to this passage, “And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14).
Satan wants to control human beings and coerce us to hell, and he will lay low nations to do this. Tyranny and genocide result in mass murder to push his evil agenda. It is not only human sin that corrupts governments and sparks war. We are besieged on many sides by the world, the flesh, and the Devil; therefore, we must take refuge under the protection of God our Father. “And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you used to walk when you conformed to the ways of this world and of the ruler of the power of the air, the spirit who is now at work in the sons of disobedience” (Ephesians 2:1-2). The Devil with his demons corrupts, perverts, and manipulates individuals to his goals as he once attacked Jesus, “Then Satan entered Judas, called Iscariot, one of the Twelve” (Luke 22:3).
This ruler or prince of the air is Satan (angels are compared to both princes in Daniel 10 and stars in Judges 5:20, Isaiah 40:26, Isaiah 14, and Revelation 12) who is a murderer, liar, tempter, and accuser of humans before God (see Job). These rulers and powers (see Ephesians above) are false gods and demonic forces who play on human vice with lies about worship. Pagan religion and witchcraft essentially worship demons in trade for temporary and localized earth power. Jesus rebuked the Pharisees when they attacked him and linked them to this evil being. He said, “You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies” (John 8:44).
In our own power, we are helpless against these schemes. Satan will defeat us if we go alone. His express purpose is the deception and destruction of mankind. To do so, he will stop at nothing and use any means, including politicians and businessmen. Every person who is not committed to Jesus Christ is a son of disobedience. You are either with God or against Him.
But with God, we can defeat this enemy. “But even the archangel Michael, when he was disputing with the devil about the body of Moses, did not himself dare to condemn him for slander but said, “The Lord rebuke you!” (Jude 1:9). To thwart the Devil and his tactics we must rely on the power of God almighty, the Holy Spirit in us, the word of God through us, and Jesus Christ above us. When Jesus was tempted through Peter he responded: “Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns” (Matthew 16:23). We should call upon spiritual forces to defend us through prayer as needed.
Michael the Archangel is described as the angel of Israel. He is a warrior and leader in the angelic army defending the nation against demonic forces. He has become a symbol of spiritual warfare in the Christian church.
The Saint Michael the Archangel Prayer is a widely recognized prayer in the Catholic tradition and is often recited for protection against the Devil in moments of spiritual warfare. It originated in 1886 with Pope Leo XIII. The Kingdom of Italy had become a nation under King Victor Emmanuel II who made Rome the capital in 1870 preserving Vatican City with the Capture of Rome under Cesare Ricotti-Magnani. While I am not Roman Catholic, I find this prayer compelling. Rather than rejecting wholesale all of the teachings of the Catholic Church, we should examine any statement for the truth conveyed and if possible, agree with what is true.
This is part of the Constantine Doctrine - societies benefit when Christians lead - and many Christians from various denominations have led throughout history. When Christians seek protection from evil influences we should look first to Jesus and then request assistance from His angels. This prayer is a heartfelt expression of faith and trust in Michael's intercession and God's ultimate power over evil.
"Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil; May God rebuke him, we humbly pray; And do thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan and all evil spirits who wander through the world for the ruin of souls.”
Asking Saint Michael to defend and protect us is appropriate. We need to be shielded from Satan's evil and deceptive tactics. I believe that our churches and homes must be bathed in prayer and surrounded by angelic hosts. Demonic influences may lead people away from the faith. But the ultimate power to rebuke and defeat the devil comes from God. We humbly seek God's intervention to thwart the devil's influence. Michael's role as a heavenly prince leading the angelic forces is Biblical. The doctrine of angels emphasizes Michael's power comes from God, and he acts as an instrument of divine intervention. He will eventually cast Satan and all malevolent spirits into hell, preventing them from causing harm and leading souls astray again. This is a plea for the protection of individuals from spiritual and moral harm.
Satan has been beaten once. “Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven. The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him” (Revelation 12:7-9).
He will be defeated again by Jesus Christ the Lord of the Heavenly Host and Army of Heaven (see Genesis 32:1–2, Psalms 91:11–12; Matthew 13:41; Revelation 7:2, and Job 19:12). Clearly Michael is itching for this rematch.
“I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and wages war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. The armies of heaven were following him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Coming out of his mouth is a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. “He will rule them with an iron scepter.” He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written:
KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS
“And I saw an angel standing in the sun, who cried in a loud voice to all the birds flying in midair, “Come, gather together for the great supper of God, so that you may eat the flesh of kings, generals, and the mighty, of horses and their riders, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, great and small.” Then I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies gathered together to wage war against the rider on the horse and his army. But the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who had performed the signs on its behalf. With these signs, he had deluded those who had received the mark of the beast and worshiped its image. The two of them were thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur. The rest were killed with the sword coming out of the mouth of the rider on the horse, and all the birds gorged themselves on their flesh” (Revelation 19:11-21).
“And I saw an angel coming down out of heaven, having the key to the Abyss and holding in his hand a great chain. He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil, or Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. He threw him into the Abyss, and locked and sealed it over him, to keep him from deceiving the nations anymore until the thousand years were ended. After that, he must be set free for a short time” Revelation 20:1-3). When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison and will go out to deceive the nations in the four corners of the earth—Gog and Magog—and to gather them for battle. In number, they are like the sand on the seashore. They marched across the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of God’s people, the city he loves. But fire came down from heaven and devoured them. And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night forever and ever.” ( 7-10).
Take heart Christian, our God is great, and greatly to be praised! In the end, we win!