What is the most important characteristic of God?

For many of us love would come to mind as the most important characteristic of God. For good reason. Mankind rebelled against God through Adam and Eve, and because of love, Jesus paid the penalty of the sins for which we should be punished by dying on the cross.

But there is a case to be made for which there is an attribute even more important than love, and that is holiness.

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.”

Isaiah 6:3b

Notice the word “holy” is stated three times. In ancient Hebrew writings if something is repeated, it means the word or phrase is important. Usually it is repeated twice, but in this situation, three times. God is holy because everything God does and says is perfect. His motives, plans and actions are perfect. When God gets angry it is because of His holiness. God is a God of righteous judgement and hates sin because He is holy. His holiness is foundational to His love, wisdom and power.