Gabriel is referred to twice in the Old Testament, and referred to as "the man Gabriel," because having the appearance of a man. In the first instance he appeared to the prophet Daniel to explain a vision he had seen but did not understand (Daniel 8:1-19). In the second instance, he likewise appeared to Daniel, this time in response to prayer and to instruct him further in regard to the vision he had seen (9:20-23).

Gabriel is likewise mentioned twice in the New Testament. In the first instance, he appeared to Zacharias, the father of John the Baptist, to announce to him the birth of the latter, stating "I am Gabriel, that stand in the presence of God; and I was sent to speak unto thee, and to bring thee these good tidings" (Luke 1:5-23). And six months later he was sent from God to "a city of Galilee, named Nazareth," to a virgin named Mary, to announce to her that she would conceive by the power of the Holy Spirit and give birth to a son, whom she was to call Jesus, and who would be called the Son of the Most High (1:26-38).

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