Tuesday, April 5, 2016

The Rainbow and God's Faithfulness

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After the great flood that destroyed every living thing, the ark of Noah rested on Mt. Ararat and God directed Noah to look at the horizon. God spoke to Noah and said, “When the bow is in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.” God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant that I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth” (Genesis 9:16-17, ESV). Here, in a nutshell, the covenant of God using the rainbow as the visual evidence of God’s covenant and promise to every living creatures represented by Noah and his family.

How does a rainbow form? Discovery kids.com explained:
Rainbows happen when sunlight and rain combine in a very specific way. The beams of sunlight separate into the colors we see in the rainbow as they enter a raindrop. Sunlight is actually made up of different colors that we don’t usually see. When a beam of sunlight comes down to Earth, the light is white. But, if the light beam happens to hit raindrops on the way down at a certain angle, the different colors that make up the beam separate so that we can see them — in the form of a rainbow. The angle for each color of a rainbow is different, because the colors slow down at different speeds when they enter the raindrop. The light exits the raindrop in one color, depending on the angle it came in, so we see only one color coming from each raindrop. Light at different angles coming through many raindrops form the rainbow that we see, in stripes of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet.

Throughout Scripture, the rainbow symbolizes God’s glory — the radiance of his beauty, holiness, and perfection. Dieudonne Tamfu described, “None of us have beheld God’s glory with our eyes. The rainbow gives us a picture of the beauty believers will see when God comes again to live on the earth and to fill it with his glory.”  First, the rainbow was a sign from God. Next, the rainbow was a resolution. Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary emphasized, “As God looks upon the bow, that he may remember the covenant, so should we, that we may be mindful of the covenant with faith and thankfulness.” Lastly, the rainbow was a reminder. Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible expounded, “whenever they see the bow in the cloud, that God is not unmindful of the covenant he has made with all creatures, and which is to continue to the end of the world. GK Chesterton provided an excellent picture, “And when it rains on your parade, look up rather than down. Without the rain, there would be no rainbow.”

Whenever we see a rainbow, we need to remember that God’s glory is revealed. Also, God’s faithfulness is renewed whenever a rainbow is seen and most importantly, God’s integrity is reinforced whenever a rainbow is seen as Matthew 24:35 asserted, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away” (ESV).

On the other hand, the rainbow reminds us the effects of sinfulness, disobedience, and its destructive consequences when we choose our way outside of God’s will. Also, the rainbow provides an excellent reminder of what God did but seeing a rainbow gives comfort, knowing that even after a terrible storm, God can and will be with us. Lastly, the rainbow reminds us of the salvation that God offered to Noah and everyone who believes in His Word and His Son. God always give enough time to reconsider our ways and to return to Him, “The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance” (2 Peter 3:9, ESV).

After all is said and done keep looking up because after each rain or storm that passes, God wants us to look up into the rainbow as it appears being a symbol of hope that God stands behind His covenant for all eternity.

Let’s talk again!