Jude 1.8-9 – The Example of Michael

So far in Jude we have talked about contending for the faith, and being in the fight for the long haul. Today, Jude gives us a contrast and an example from which to draw.

Yet in like manner these people also, relying on their dreams, defile the flesh, reject authority, and blaspheme the glorious ones. But when the archangel Michael, contending with the devil, was disputing about the body of Moses, he did not presume to pronounce a blasphemous judgment, but said, “The Lord rebuke you.”

These people are those referenced back in vv.5-7, those who fall to unbelief and indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire. Here, Jude says that they also rely on their dreams, defile the flesh, reject authority, and blaspheme the glorious ones.

Simply, the worldly way of living focuses on self and our desires, uses our bodies to gratify these desires rather than glorify God, rejects the idea that anyone can tell us what to do with our life, and actively and vehemently speaks out against those who offer an opinion contrary to their own. 

In huge contrast to this we are shown the archangel Michael

Archangel is an interesting term, used only twice in the New Testament (here and 1 Thessalonians 4.16), it signifies a chief angel, one of first place, one with authority, one who is head of others. So Michael the Archangel is, basically, the number one angel in the ranks of the heavenly host. He is no doubt powerful and able as leader of heaven’s armies (Revelation 12.7).

Here is the takeaway for us:

look how Michael contends with the devil.

Rather than use his own might and power and strength and ability to fight the battle, to contend for the faith, to fight for Him that he serves, he says 

“The Lord rebuke you.”

It is far better for us to be on the side of God than to try go it alone. Rather than fight for the faith and rather than contend for truth in our own strength and power, we are far better following the example of Michael, who despite having the highest rank among angels, did not presume to pronounce a blasphemous judgement, but instead called upon the name of the Lord and said, “The Lord rebuke you.”


Point to ponder – How can I follow the example of Michael today and call upon the powerful name of the Lord?


Prayer – Father, we thank you for this example in your Word of where the true power lies. We thank you for this example of Michael who despite having a position of power and prominence, called upon your name when fighting for you. Help us today, and every day, to do the same. Amen. 

Revelation 12.7-17 – Be careful what you wish for…

7 Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought back, 8 but he was defeated, and there was no longer any place for them in heaven.

9 And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world–he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.

10 And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. 11 And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death. 12 Therefore, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!”

13 And when the dragon saw that he had been thrown down to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. 14 But the woman was given the two wings of the great eagle so that she might fly from the serpent into the wilderness, to the place where she is to be nourished for a time, and times, and half a time.

15 The serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman, to sweep her away with a flood. 16 But the earth came to the help of the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed the river that the dragon had poured from his mouth. 17 Then the dragon became furious with the woman and went off to make war on the rest of her offspring, on those who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus. And he stood on the sand of the sea.

Today we see what at first glance is a great thing, the great dragon was thrown down…the devil is cast out of heaven as there was no longer any place for them in heaven. Maybe you’re thinking, hang on, he was in heaven before? Job 1.6-12 tells us that yes, he was.

So he is cast down to earth after a tussle with Michael and his angels. Every time we see Michael in the Bible it’s in the context of a fight, he’s the go to guy, and he does it right, he does it in the name of the Lord, not in his own power. Consider that, the leader of heaven’s armies fights in the power of the Lord. Jude 1.9 says

But when the archangel Michael, contending with the devil, was disputing about the body of Moses, he did not presume to pronounce a blasphemous judgment, but said,

“The Lord rebuke you.”

There’s a lesson in there for us, isn’t there…

So the devil is cast out of heaven, great.

But then he resolves to pursue God’s people here on earth, bad.

First he pursues the woman who had given birth to the male child, and in the next section we will see that he then turns attention to the rest of her offspring, on those who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus. So cast out of heaven, good. Pursuing and making war on you, and me, and our loved ones, and all who hold to the testimony of Jesus, bad.

How often is that the case, we think that we are doing something great, but actually there are consequences. We feel we acting in the best interests of those we lead, but then it comes back to bite us, or even them. We try to be a Godly leader and example in our home, place of work, circle of friends, but then we end up providing a witness far from what it should be. Now, I’m not saying that Michael and his tribe wish they hadn’t cast the devil and his cronies out of heaven, far from it, but that when we make bold moves sometimes there are hidden results for others.

All this to say that we need to consider our actions prayerfully, thoroughly, and if possible, collectively. Think of others before making decisions, consider the possible outcomes for others before acting boldly. More important than that, stop, pray, seek God’s will for your life in that very moment, and the one after that, and the one after that…He knows what will happen, He is the God of our past, present, and future and exists in His eternal now, so He is already there; ask Him for wisdom, the wisdom He freely gives.

As Michael sets the example, let us do all we do in the name of the Lord, and let us at every step pause and pray Your will be done. Then we will know what we wish for is what He wills for.

Revelation 10.1-7 – Time with God

1 Then I saw another mighty angel coming down from heaven, wrapped in a cloud, with a rainbow over his head, and his face was like the sun, and his legs like pillars of fire. 2 He had a little scroll open in his hand. And he set his right foot on the sea, and his left foot on the land, 3 and called out with a loud voice, like a lion roaring. When he called out, the seven thunders sounded. 4 And when the seven thunders had sounded, I was about to write, but I heard a voice from heaven saying,

“Seal up what the seven thunders have said, and do not write it down.”

5 And the angel whom I saw standing on the sea and on the land raised his right hand to heaven 6 and swore by him who lives forever and ever, who created heaven and what is in it, the earth and what is in it, and the sea and what is in it, that there would be no more delay, 7 but that in the days of the trumpet call to be sounded by the seventh angel, the mystery of God would be fulfilled, just as he announced to his servants the prophets.

In chapter 9 we saw six of the seven trumpets blown and now there is an interlude, a break until we reach chapter 11. The best solution as to why is that this is a time for repentance; those living on the earth when the preceding events have taken place now have an opportunity to turn hearts and minds to the Lord.

An angel appears wrapped in a cloud, with a rainbow over his head, and his face was like the sun, and his legs like pillars of fire. Some ask if this is Jesus, but a more likely solution is that this is Michael, the mighty angel referenced in Daniel 12.1. Why does Michael have a rainbow over his head and a shiny face? Think back to Exodus 34.29-35 when Moses had to veil his face because He had spent time with the Lord. So Moses then, and Michael here, reflect the glory of God by being in His presence.

Now, don’t get me wrong, we can’t spend time with God in prayer, spend time worshiping Jesus, or spend time meditating on the wondrous works of the Holy Spirit to the extent we need to veil our faces; both Moses and Michael have spent time in the presence of God.


However, the principle is still very applicable for us; spend time with God and reflect His goodness to those around us.


When we have spent time in dedicated prayer, when we have worshiped, when we have pondered the deep truths and amazing goodness of our God, we feel different, don’t we? Then, when we feel different in this way, our actions follow accordingly.

So, we spend time with God and we reflect that to those around us witnessing through our actions and reactions just how good, loving, merciful, and gracious our great God is.

Michael here announces that in the days of the trumpet call to be sounded by the seventh angel, the mystery of God would be fulfilled. We are not announcing the coming judgement of God on a fallen world, but nonetheless, our changed lives proclaim a great witness to others when we have spent time with the Lord.

So, have you spent time with Him today?