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The name Michael means "like unto God" or "Who is like unto God?"
Michael first appears in the [[Old Testament]]in the book of Joshua's account of the fall of Jericho. Though Michael is not mentioned by name in the text, it is said that Joshua "looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in his hand." When the still unaware Joshua asks which side of the fight the Archangel is on, Michael responds, "neither...but as commander of the army of the Lord I have now come" (Joshua 5:13-14).
In the book of Daniel, Michael appears first to help the [[Archangel Gabriel]] defeat the Persians (10:13). In a later vision it is revealed to Daniel that "at that time [the end times] Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then..." (Ch. 12). Michael thus plays an important role as the protector of Israel and later of his chosen people, the [[Church]].