"And the four living creatures, each of them with six wings, are full of eyes all around and within, and day and night they never cease to say, 'Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty, who was and is and is to come!'" - Revelation 4:8
The apostle John is invited to go up to heaven and see God seated on his throne. There are four living creatures around the throne who constantly praise God for his holiness. Each "holy" might refer to each of the three persons of the Trinity. God is holy, the Lord, the Almighty, and the one who was, is, and is to come. It is a scene of total worship.
God's holiness has ontological and ethical dimensions. His ontological holiness has to do with his distinctiveness from the created world and all its creatures. There is a distinct "otherness" about God in his very essence. There is no chain of being, with God on top. He is totally other. His ethical holiness has to do with his moral purity. He himself is the source and standard of all goodness, purity, kindness, and love. Human ethics is built around God's character of holiness. It is right to praise God by saying, "Holy, holy, holy." His holiness is like the sun in all its brightness.
Father, thank you you gave John a picture of your throne room in heaven and this scene of worship. May we join with the four living creatures and the 24 elders in giving glory, honour, and thanks to you, for you are the eternal Creator and the almighty Lord of heaven and earth. Thank you that though you are ontologically and ethically holy, you want us as believers to call you "Father." It is pure grace that we are able to have an intimate, personal relationship with you, without you giving up any of your distinctiveness and moral purity. Be honoured today, Father. In Jesus' name, amen.
- Jeff Coleman