As you know the Bible is vague about the restrainer and it is not easy to come up with a conclusive answer on this subject. As you know there are various conclusions from preachers. I have questions on it myself so I went to the Word to make sure I don't mislead. You brought up a good point about thinking that it could be Michael, the angel, since angels are part of our lives according to the Gospel. I could not find any references though that Michael may be the restrainer. Following are verses that pertain to him and notes that come from my Bible program. (KJV) Since the Holy Spirit is one with God, the Holy Spirit, and the teacher of the Word of God, is not really aggressive about the rest of the world to be a restrainer. It could well be that the restrainer is the Word of God, spoken by the Holy Spirit boldly. Notice in these Scriptures how the Sword is used in Jesus's mouth.
Daniel 10:13 But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia.
From notes of the Bible program Commentary Jamieson, Fausset and Brown Da 10:13
13. prince of . . . Persia--the angel of darkness that represented the Persian world power, to which Israel was then subject. This verse gives the reason why, though Daniel's "words were heard from the first day" (Da 10:12), the good angel did not come to him until more than three weeks had elapsed (Da 10:4).
one and twenty days--answering to the three weeks of Daniel's mourning (Da 10:2).
Michael--that is, "Who is like God?" Though an archangel, "one of the chief princes," Michael was not to be compared to God.
help me--Michael, as patron of Israel before God (Da 10:21; 12:1), "helped" to influence the Persian king to permit the Jews' return to Jerusalem.
I remained--I was detained there with the kings of Persia, that is, with the angel of the Persian rulers, with whom I had to contend, and from whom I should not have got free, but for the help of Michael. GESENIUS translates, "I obtained the ascendency," that is, I gained my point against the adverse angel of Persia, so as to influence the Persian authorities to favor Israel's restoration.
Geneva Bible interpretation
But I will shew thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth: qand there is none that holdeth with me in these things, but Michael your prince.
q. For this angel was appointed for the defence of the Church under Christ, who is the head of it.
Daniel 12:1 And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.
Da 12:1-13. CONCLUSION OF THE VISION (TENTH THROUGH TWELFTH CHAPTERS) AND EPILOGUE TO THE BOOK.
Compare Da 12:4,13; as Da 12:6-7 refer to Da 7:25, that is, to the time of Antichrist, so the subsequent Da 12:8-12 treat of the time of Antiochus (compare Da 12:11; 11:31), thus putting together in one summary view the two great periods of distress. The political resurrection of the Jews under the Maccabees is the starting-point of transition to the literal resurrection about to follow the destruction of Antichrist by Christ's coming in glory. The language passes here from the nearer to the more remote event, to which alone it is fully applicable.
1. at that time--typically, towards the close of Antiochus' reign; antitypically, the time when Antichrist is to be destroyed at Christ's coming.
Michael--the guardian angel of Israel ("thy people"), (Da 10:13). The transactions on earth affecting God's people have their correspondences in heaven, in the conflict between good and bad angels; so at the last great contest on earth which shall decide the ascendency of Christianity (Re 12:7-10). An archangel, not the Lord Jesus; for he is distinguished from "the Lord" in Jude 1:9.
there shall be--rather, "it shall be."
time of trouble, such as never was--partially applicable to the time of Antiochus, who was the first subverter of the Jews' religion, and persecutor of its professors, which no other world power had done. Fully applicable to the last times of Antichrist, and his persecutions of Israel restored to Palestine. Satan will be allowed to exercise an unhindered, unparalleled energy (Isa 26:20-21; compare Da 8:24; 11:36).
thy people shall be delivered-- (Ro 11:26). The same deliverance of Israel as in Zec 13:8-9, "the third part . . . brought through the fire . . . refined as silver." The remnant in Israel spared, as not having joined in the Antichristian blasphemy (Re 14:9-10); not to be confounded with those who have confessed Christ before His coming, "the remnant according to the election of grace" (Ro 11:5), part of the Church of the first-born who will share His millennial reign in glorified bodies; the spared remnant (Isa 10:21) will only know the Lord Jesus when they see Him, and when the spirit of grace and supplication is poured out on them [TREGELLES].
written in the book--namely, of God's secret purpose, as destined for deliverance (Ps 56:8; 69:28; Lu 10:20; Re 20:15; 21:27). Metaphor from a muster-roll of citizens (Ne 7:5).
Jude 1:9 Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.
Commentary Jamieson, Fausset and Brown Jude 1:9
9. Michael, the archangel--Nowhere in Scripture is the plural used, "archangels"; but only ONE, "archangel." The only other passage in the New Testament where it occurs, is 1Th 4:16, where Christ is distinguished from the archangel, with whose voice He shall descend to raise the dead; they therefore err who confound Christ with Michael. The name means, Who is like God? In Da 10:13 he is called "One ('the first,' Margin) of the chief princes." He is the champion angel of Israel. In Re 12:7 the conflict between Michael and Satan is again alluded to.
about the body of Moses--his literal body. Satan, as having the power of death, opposed the raising of it again, on the ground of Moses' sin at Meribah, and his murder of the Egyptian. That Moses' body was raised, appears from his presence with Elijah and Jesus (who were in the body) at the Transfiguration: the sample and earnest of the coming resurrection kingdom, to be ushered in by Michael's standing up for God's people. Thus in each dispensation a sample and pledge of the future resurrection was given: Enoch in the patriarchal dispensation, Moses in the Levitical, Elijah in the prophetical. It is noteworthy that the same rebuke is recorded here as was used by the Angel of the Lord, or Jehovah the Second Person, in pleading for Joshua, the representative of the Jewish Church, against Satan, in Zec 3:2; whence some have thought that also here "the body of Moses" means the Jewish Church accused by Satan, before God, for its filthiness, on which ground he demands that divine justice should take its course against Israel, but is rebuked by the Lord who has "chosen Jerusalem": thus, as "the body of Christ" is the Christian Church, so "the body of Moses" is the Jewish Church. But the literal body is evidently here meant (though, secondarily, the Jewish Church is typified by Moses' body, as it was there represented by Joshua the high priest); and Michael, whose connection seems to be so close with Jehovah-Messiah on the one hand, and with Israel on the other, naturally uses the same language as his Lord. As Satan (adversary in court) or the devil (accuser) accuses alike the Church collectively and "the brethren" individually, so Christ pleads for us as our Advocate. Israel's, and all believers' full justification, and the accuser's being rebuked finally, is yet future. JOSEPHUS [Antiquities,4.8], states that God hid Moses' body, lest, if it had been exposed to view, it would have been made an idol of. Jude, in this account, either adopts it from the apocryphal "assumption of Moses" (as ORIGEN [Concerning Principalities, 3.2] thinks), or else from the ancient tradition on which that work was founded. Jude, as inspired, could distinguish how much of the tradition was true, how much false. We have no such means of distinguishing, and therefore can be sure of no tradition, save that which is in the written word.
durst not--from reverence for Satan's former dignity (Jude 1:8).
railing accusation--Greek, "judgment of blasphemy," or evil- speaking. Peter said, Angels do not, in order to avenge themselves, rail at dignities, though ungodly, when they have to contend with them: Jude says that the archangel Michael himself did not rail even at the time when he fought with the devil, the prince of evil spirits--not from fear of him, but from reverence of God, whose delegated power in this world Satan once had, and even in some degree still has. From the word "disputed," or debated in controversy, it is plain it was a judicial contest.
Revelation 12:7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,
Re 12:7 Commentary Jamieson, Fausset and Brown
7. In Job 1:6-11; 2:1-6, Satan appears among the sons of God, presenting himself before God in heaven, as the accuser of the saints: again in Zec 3:1-2. But at Christ's coming as our Redeemer, he fell from heaven, especially when Christ suffered, rose again, and ascended to heaven. When Christ appeared before God as our Advocate, Satan, the accusing adversary, could no longer appear before God against us, but was cast out judicially (Ro 8:33-34). He and his angels henceforth range through the air and the earth, after a time (namely, the interval between the ascension and the second advent) about to be cast hence also, and bound in hell. That "heaven" here does not mean merely the air, but the abode of angels, appears from Re 12:9-10,12; 1Ki 22:19-22.
there was--Greek, "there came to pass," or "arose."
war in heaven--What a seeming contradiction in terms, yet true! Contrast the blessed result of Christ's triumph, Lu 19:38, "peace in heaven." Col 1:20, "made peace through the blood of His cross, by Him to reconcile all things unto Himself; whether . . . things in earth, or things in heaven."
Michael and his angels . . . the dragon . . . and his angels-- It was fittingly ordered that, as the rebellion arose from unfaithful angels and their leader, so they should be encountered and overcome by faithful angels and their archangel, in heaven. On earth they are fittingly encountered, and shall be overcome, as represented by the beast and false prophet, by the Son of man and His armies of human saints (Re 19:14-21). The conflict on earth, as in Da 10:13, has its correspondent conflict of angels in heaven. Michael is peculiarly the prince, or presiding angel, of the Jewish nation. The conflict in heaven, though judicially decided already against Satan from the time of Christ's resurrection and ascension, receives its actual completion in the execution of judgment by the angels who cast out Satan from heaven. From Christ's ascension he has no standing-ground judicially against the believing elect. Lu 10:18, "I beheld (in the earnest of the future full fulfilment given in the subjection of the demons to the disciples) Satan as lightning fall from heaven." As Michael fought before with Satan about the body of the mediator of the old covenant (Jude 1:9), so now the mediator of the new covenant, by offering His sinless body in sacrifice, arms Michael with power to renew and finish the conflict by a complete victory. That Satan is not yet actually and finally cast out of heaven, though the judicial sentence to that effect received its ratification at Christ's ascension, appears from Eph 6:12, "spiritual wickedness in high (Greek, 'heavenly') places." This is the primary Church-historical sense here. But, through Israel's unbelief, Satan has had ground against that, the elect nation, appearing before God as its accuser. At the eve of its restoration, in the ulterior sense, his standing-ground in heaven against Israel, too, shall be taken from him, "the Lord that hath chosen Jerusalem" rebuking him, and casting him out from heaven actually and for ever by Michael, the prince, or presiding angel of the Jews. Thus Zec 3:1- 9 is strictly parallel, Joshua, the high priest, being representative of his nation Israel, and Satan standing at God's fight hand as adversary to resist Israel's justification. Then, and not till then, fully (Re 12:10, "NOW," &c.) shall ALL things be reconciled unto Christ IN HEAVEN (Col 1:20), and there shall be peace in heaven (Lu 19:38).
against--A, B, and C read, "with."
Psalms 76:10 Surely the wrath of man shall praise thee: the remainder of wrath shalt thou restrain.
Psalms 76:1-12 <<To the chief Musician on Neginoth, A Psalm or Song of Asaph.>> In Judah is God known: his name is great in Israel. In Salem also is his tabernacle, and his dwelling place in Zion. There brake he the arrows of the bow, the shield, and the sword, and the battle. Selah. Thou art more glorious and excellent than the mountains of prey. The stouthearted are spoiled, they have slept their sleep: and none of the men of might have found their hands. At thy rebuke, O God of Jacob, both the chariot and horse are cast into a dead sleep. Thou, even thou, art to be feared: and who may stand in thy sight when once thou art angry? Thou didst cause judgment to be heard from heaven; the earth feared, and was still, When God arose to judgment, to save all the meek of the earth. Selah. Surely the wrath of man shall praise thee: the remainder of wrath shalt thou restrain. Vow, and pay unto the LORD your God: let all that be round about him bring presents unto him that ought to be feared. He shall cut off the spirit of princes: he is terrible to the kings of the earth.
Commentary Jamieson, Fausset and Brown
Comment: Ps 76:12
HOLY SPIRIT / HOLY GHOST
Isaiah 63:10 But they rebelled, and vexed his holy Spirit: therefore he was turned to be their enemy, and he fought against them.
Ephesians 1:13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
Ephesians 4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
Mark 12:36 For David himself said by the Holy Ghost, The LORD said to my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool.
Mark 13:11 But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, neither do ye premeditate: but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye: for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost.
Luke 1:35 And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.
John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
Acts 1:2 Until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy Ghost had given commandments unto the apostles whom he had chosen:
Acts 1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
Acts 4:8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel,
Acts 5:32 And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him.
Acts 7:51 Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye.
Acts 10:38 How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.
Acts 16:6 Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia,
1 Corinthians 2:13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.
1 Corinthians 6:19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
Hebrews 10:15 Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that he had said before,
1 Peter 1:12 Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.
1 John 5:7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.
Could it be that the Restrainer is the Sword of His Mouth? It is the authorized Bible that is disappearing and is most likely the restrainer, since the Word is preached from it by the Holy Ghost. The Word restrains Satan from an all out war against the Saints until the Bible is not taught anymore at all which is going on today. The heathens are pushing hard to get the Word of God off the airways, out of the Congress, out of the schools and churches.
Ephesians 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:
Revelation 1:16 And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength.
Isaiah 1:20 But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.
Revelation 19:15 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.
Revelation 19:21 And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.
Isaiah 27:1 In that day the LORD with his sore and great and strong sword shall punish leviathan the piercing serpent, even leviathan that crooked serpent; and he shall slay the dragon that is in the sea.
Isaiah 31:8 Then shall the Assyrian fall with the sword, not of a mighty man; and the sword, not of a mean man, shall devour him: but he shall flee from the sword, and his young men shall be discomfited.
Isaiah 34:5 For my sword shall be bathed in heaven: behold, it shall come down upon Idumea, and upon the people of my curse, to judgment.
Isaiah 49:2 And he hath made my mouth like a sharp sword; in the shadow of his hand hath he hid me, and made me a polished shaft; in his quiver hath he hid me;