The story of how Raphael the Archangel protects Tobias on the journey to Media.
As promised, here’s some more information about Raphael the Archangel. As I mentioned last time, Raphael is only identified in the Catholic Bible. The Book of Tobit, where he appears, is one of seven books in the Catholic Bible, but it’s not in the King James (Protestant) versions. It is a charming story, and one that gives us some in-depth knowledge about the work angels do.
The story begins when Tobit loses his sight. Since he can no longer support his family, he sends his son Tobias to retrieve some money he once deposited in Media.
There is also a young woman, Sarah, in Media, who has lost seven husbands, all killed on their wedding nights by a demon. (And we think we have troubles!) Sarah and Tobit, each unknown to the other, pray for help, and God sends the angel Raphael in disguise as a guide to help them both.
Raphael’s first job is to protect Tobias. On the journey to Media, Tobias is attacked by a fish, and Raphael instructs him to kill the fish and remove certain parts since they make “useful medicines.”
After the pair arrive safely in Media, they meet Sarah’s father and Raphael convinces Tobias to marry Sarah. On their wedding night, when the demon comes to kill Sarah’s new husband, Tobias uses the fish parts to drive it away.
When Tobias returns home, he uses the rest of the fish to rub his father’s eyes, and Tobit’s sight is restored. Raphael then reveals his true identity and returns to heaven. “As for me, when I came to you, it was not out of any favor on my part, but because it was God’s will,” he tells them. “So continue to thank him every day, and praise him with song.”
There are some beautiful passages in this book, especially about living a good life. Raphael acts as a protector, a healer, a marriage counselor (“She was set apart for you before the world existed,” he reassures Tobias about Sarah) and a travel consultant. What an interesting angel!