Draw Close to God
“Holy, Holy, Holy Is Jehovah”
IF YOU had to choose a single word to describe Jehovah God—his essence, or nature—what word would you select? In the eighth century B.C.E., the prophet Isaiah was given a vision in which he heard spirit creatures extolling Jehovah, using a word that describes a key aspect of His very essence—holiness. What Isaiah saw and heard should both fill us with awe and draw us closer to Jehovah. As we consider the words at Isaiah 6:1-3, imagine yourself there.
What does Isaiah see? “I . . . got to see Jehovah, sitting on a throne lofty and lifted up,” reports Isaiah. (Verse 1) Isaiah is not actually viewing the Sovereign Lord Jehovah. Physical eyes cannot peer into the spirit realm. The Bible plainly states: “No man has seen God at any time.” (John 1:18) What Isaiah sees is a vision.* Still, the vision is especially vivid—so real that Isaiah is awestruck, reacting as if he were seeing Jehovah himself.
Isaiah next observes what perhaps no other human has been privileged to see in vision. He writes: “Seraphs were standing above him [Jehovah]. Each one had six wings. With two he kept his face covered, and with two he kept his feet covered, and with two he would fly about.” (Verse 2) Seraphs are spirit creatures of very high rank. Isaiah is the only Bible writer who mentions them. The seraphs are standing ever ready to move and to act in carrying out the divine will for them. They are covering their face and feet, showing due reverence and respect for the One in whose presence they are privileged to serve.
Isaiah is awed not only by what he sees but also by what he hears. Forming a heavenly choir, the seraphs lift up their voices in song. Isaiah writes: “This one called to that one and said: ‘Holy, holy, holy is Jehovah of armies.’” (Verse 3) The Hebrew word rendered “holy” conveys the idea of cleanness and purity. The word also includes “the thought of complete freedom and separation from what is sinful.” In what is perhaps a continuous antiphonal song, the seraphs sing the word “holy” three times, emphasizing that Jehovah is holy to the superlative degree. (Revelation 4:8) Holiness, then, is a distinguishing characteristic of his nature. Through and through, Jehovah is pure, clean, and blameless.
Knowing that Jehovah is holy should move us to draw closer to him. Why? Unlike human rulers who may become corrupt and abusive, Jehovah is completely free of what is sinful. His holiness thus guarantees that he will always be the ideal Father, a righteous Ruler, and an impartial Judge. We have every reason to be confident that the God whose very essence is holy will never disappoint us.
Suggested Bible reading for December:
Insight on the Scriptures explains: “When a person received a vision from God during waking hours, it appears that the impression was made upon the conscious mind. The vision could later be recalled and described or recorded by the recipient, in his own words.”—Published by Jehovah’s Witnesses.
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Knowing that Jehovah is holy should move us to draw close to him