By CARLOS SPENCER
Most of us would be familiar with a rainbow and it many colours. There is a scientific explanation of the origin and composition of a rainbow, but this article focuses of a biblical interpretation and representation.
A rainbow is a symbol from God that He would never flood the earth again on the scale experienced by Noah and his family. The book of Genesis records the great flood, where God made a covenant with Noah. The rainbow is a sign of this covenant, and is a statement of God’s faithfulness. It reminds believers that God will keep His promises and this is important. Genesis 9:17 (KJV) states: “And God said unto Noah, This is the token of the covenant, which I have established between me and all flesh that is upon the earth.”
Believers are encouraged to have a particular reaction when they see a rainbow. We should consider God’s grace, His awesome love, His faithfulness and His glory. Ezekiel 1:28 (KJV) records: “As the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness round about. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. And when I saw it, I fell upon my face, and I heard a voice of one that spake.”
The colours of the rainbow are unique, each having its own particular beauty. Depending on one’s culture, each colour in the rainbow can be related to specific emotions and beliefs. For example in most cultures the colour red is usually associated with warning or danger. Red is also connected with love, passion and romance, and the Red Cross. Red is held in great reverence in some countries, for example, China and Japan and depicts wealth, strength, power and life.
Alternatively, one tends to associate Ireland with the colour green. Violet in the rainbow is normally connected to nobility, royalty, authority and good judgment. Yellow is usually associated with the sun, life-giving energy, joy, happiness, intellect and wisdom... although in some cultures yellow represents fear, cold feet and cowardice. The point is, each colour in the rainbow has its own peculiar meaning and connotation.
Generally, the sight or thought of a rainbow is interpreted as something refreshing and positive. It conjures up a feeling of hope, faithfulness and expectation. As believers we should seek to think of God’s glory whenever we look upon a rainbow, and marvel at His covenant with Noah. God’s grace and our many blessings are gifts from our Heavenly Father. (e.g. the gift of life itself) In essence, we are experiencing a rainbow in our lives every day. “O taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.” (Psalm 34:8 KJV)
Amen. Thanks be to God for the sharing of His word.