What is an Archangel?
The New Testament speaks frequently of angels (for example, angels giving messages to Mary, Joseph, and the shepherds; angels ministering to Christ after his temptation in the wilderness, an angel visiting Christ in his agony, angels at the tomb of the risen Christ, the angels who liberate the Apostles Peter and Paul from prison); however, it uses the word "archangel" only twice: "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'" (Jude 1:9); and "The Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God" (1 Thessalonians 4:16).
In Christianity, whether in the Catholic or the Protestant Bible, the term "archangel" appears only twice: in Jude 1:9, where it is applied to Michael, and in 1 Thessalonians 4:16, where it is used generically or, according to Jehovah's Witnesses, of the Lord.
In later Christian tradition, however, there are three Archangels: Michael, Gabriel, Raphael (and sometimes Uriel is given as a fourth). Eastern Orthodox tradition mentions Seven Archangels. Uriel is included, and the other three are most often cited as Selaphiel, Jegudiel, and Barachiel.
Certain Protestants, such as the Baptist evangelist Charles Spurgeon and the Presbyterian Commentary author Matthew Henry, who believe that the Archangel Michael is not an angel but is instead the uncreated, divine Son of God. In this view "Archangel" means "head of the angels" rather than "head angel," and is a title similar to "Prince of the host" (Daniel 8:11).
Both Protestants and Catholics agree that angels are never to be worshipped, but Catholics also believe angels are to be venerated. To venerate is to regard someone with respect, reverence, or heartfelt deference. It is wrong to speak of angels with derision or to ridicule them because the Bible states that angels are part of God's plan and worthy of the highest respect. Angels are to be honored (regarded with respect) without being worshipped.