St Michael in the Old Testament


Archangel Michael:

  1. Taught the angels the hymns they would sing to God;
  2. Guarded the gate of Paradise after Adam and Eve were banished;
  3. Rescued Abraham from the furnace where he had been thrown by Nimrod, one of the sons of Kush and grandson of Ham, who had been cursed by Noah;
  4. Protected Sarah, Abraham’s wife, from being defiled by Abimelech, king of the Philistines;
  5. Stopped Abraham from sacrificing his son Isaac to God the Father, after He had asked Abraham for this sacrifice, to test the latter’s faith (the test of the Akedah);
  6. Informed Abraham that Lot had been taken captive;
  7. Rescued Lot from the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah;
  8. Saved Jacob from being killed by Satan, when the former was still in his mother’s womb. Later on, Michael also stopped Laban from harming Jacob. In some sources it is additionally reported that Michael was the angel who wrestled with Jacob and then blessed him;
  9. Advocated for Israel during the Exodus, when Satan accused the Israelites before God the Father of idolatry and demanded that they be drowned in the Red Sea;
  10. Appeared to Joshua and helped him to defeat Jericho;
  11. Helped annihilate the army of the Assyrian emperor Sennacherib;
  12. Stopped Balaam’s donkey in its tracks, when Balaam was on his way to curse the Israelites, for the Moabite king Balak;
  13. Saved Shadrach (Hananiah), Meshach (Mishael), and Abednego (Azariah) from the fiery furnace into which they were thrown, for refusing to worship the false idols of Nebuchadnezzar;
  14. Advocated for Israel in Esther’s time as, “The more Haman accused Israel on earth, the more Michael defended Israel in heaven;”
  15. Reminded Ahasuerus, the Persian king of Esther’s time, that he was the debtor of Mordecai because the latter had saved his life.
  16. Transported Habakkuk from Judea to Babylon;
  17. Smote the impious leader Heliodorus and facilitated victory for the Maccabees;
  18. Provided Daniel with food, when he was thrown in the lions’ den.


  • Catholic Encyclopedia. (1911). Retrieved on 2/24/12 from:
  • Jewish Encyclopedia. (1906). Retrieved on 2/24/12 from:
  • Midrash Abkir. Yalḳut, Gn. 110, 133.
  • Midrash Genesis Rabbah xliv. 16
  • Midrash Esther Rabbah iii. 8
  • Midrash Exodus Rabbah xviii. 5.
  • Midrash Pirke R. El. xxxvii.
  • Orthodox Encyclopedia. (2008). Retrieved on 2/24/12 from:
  • Talmud B. M. 86b
  • Targum Esther, vi. 1.
  • Targum pseudo-Jonathan to Genesis xxxii. 25.