The “kingdom hall of the Jehovah’s Witnesses” assert Jesus the Christ and Michael the archangel are the same being, but the Bible says it’s a bad assertion!
One of the quickest arguments used to promote the idea is a dishonest handling of 1 Thessalonians 4:16. The argument says:
Archangel. God’s Word refers to Michael “the archangel.” (Jude 9) This term means “chief angel.” Notice that Michael is called the archangel. This suggests that there is only one such angel. In fact, the term “archangel” occurs in the Bible only in the singular, never in the plural. Moreover, Jesus is linked with the office of archangel. Regarding the resurrected Lord Jesus Christ, 1 Thessalonians 4:16 states: “The Lord himself will descend from heaven with a commanding call, with an archangel’s voice.” Thus the voice of Jesus is described as being that of an archangel. This scripture therefore suggests that Jesus himself is the archangel Michael. – (Who Is Michael the Archangel?)
Did you notice only half of 1 Thessalonians 4:16 is quoted? That’s because the whole conclusion is built upon half a verse! A conclusion that becomes pointless when the entire verse is taken into consideration – “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.” (NKJV)
If one is going to be intellectually and spiritually honest with a proposition equating Jesus and Michael the archangel because of what 1 Thessalonians 4:16 says about Jesus’ voice, then one must use the same equivocation about Jesus and God when it comes to the trumpet being used. If a voice makes Jesus an angel then the trumpet makes Jesus God! This is why the website doesn’t quote 1 Thessalonians in its entirety.
But regardless, 1 Thessalonians 4:16 is dealing with neither points – the point is about the nature of the resurrection, not the nature of Jesus. To settle the issue of Jesus and Michael, one does not have to debate the meaning of Jesus’ voice when he returns, the role Jesus fulfills in the army of God or even the context of 1 Thessalonians 4:16. One simply has to look at the letter written to the Hebrew church.
In comparison to all angels (their authority, relationship, nature, and service included) the letter to the Hebrews says Jesus has:
- a more excellent name (Hebrews 1:4)
- a unique relationship with the Father (Hebrews 1:5-6)
- an eternal nature (Hebrews 1:7-12)
- a higher authority in the past and present (Hebrews 1:13)
- a more urgent message (Hebrews 2:1-4)
- a higher authority that will be revealed (Hebrews 2:5-8)
You make the choice. Are you going to equate Jesus the Christ and Michael the archangel based upon the unfair mishandling of a single verse, or are you going to allow more than an entire chapter of God’s word show you that Jesus was not, is not and will never be an angelic-being?
“But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone. For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For both He who sanctifies and those who are being sanctified are all of one, for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren, saying: “I will declare Your name to My brethren; In the midst of the assembly I will sing praise to You.” And again: “I will put My trust in Him.”” (Hebrews 2:9-13 NKJV)