In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back. The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying:
“‘Holy, holy, holy
is the Lord God Almighty,’
who was, and is, and is to come.”
The Tetramorph is one of the most fascinating concepts in Christianity. First appearing in Ezekiel Chapter 1 and later in Revelation Chapter 4 the Tetramorph is a prophetic vision of the Word of God in four distinct but unified parts, represented by four living creatures: a lion, an ox, a man and an eagle.
I looked, and I saw a windstorm coming out of the north—an immense cloud with flashing lightning and surrounded by brilliant light. The center of the fire looked like glowing metal, and in the fire was what looked like four living creatures...
...Their faces looked like this: Each of the four had the face of a human being, and on the right side each had the face of a lion, and on the left the face of an ox; each also had the face of an eagle.
Ezekiel 1: 4-5,10
The Early Church fathers taught that the creatures of the Tetramorph represented the 4 Gospels and their authors: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. They also symbolize 4 distinct roles of Christ as uniquely presented in each Gospel.
Gospel of Matthew
Christ is a Just King
Gospel of Mark
Christ is a Powerful Miracle Worker
Gospel of Luke
Christ is a Wise Priest
Gospel of John
Christ is a Spiritual Prophet
For more information, check out "Episode 2: Theory (Part 1)" of the Disciple Types Podcast: