Summer Devotional and Sermon Series
Week 4/Heroes: Noah
The story of the flood and Noah ends with a covenant and a rainbow. My father worked as a Meteorologist for the National Weather Service so you can imagine weather phenomena was a common topic for discussion in our house. If you were to ask my dad about rainbows he might have answered with a rather scientific explanation but here is a simple one: “A rainbow is a meteorological phenomenon that is caused by reflection, refraction and dispersion of light in water droplets resulting in a spectrum of light appearing in the sky. It takes the form of a multicolored circular arc. Rainbows caused by sunlight always appear in the section of sky directly opposite the sun.”
Rainbows are seen in some cultures as a sign of luck. Irish folklore tells us that if you follow a rainbow to its end, you will find a pot of gold. Double rainbows are considered to be even luckier! In the ancient beliefs of Japan, rainbows were the bridges that human ancestors took to descend to the planet. In the tradition of the Navajo, the rainbow is the path of the holy spirits, and is frequently depicted in sacred sandpaintings. In reality, rainbows hold no power over us or provide us with any luck; but rather are a sign given by God to Noah.
A covenant, by definition, is a promise or an agreement. God made a covenant with Noah… a promise that was to last for all generations. He promised to never again send a flood with the intent to destroy all life and to seal that covenant. He placed a rainbow in the sky with these words “Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.”
Bible scholar John Gill states concerning the rainbow, “as it has in it a variety of beautiful colors, it may represent Christ, who is full of grace and truth, and fairer than the children of men; and may be considered as a symbol of peace and reconciliation by him, whom God looks unto, and remembers the covenant of his grace he has made with him and his chosen ones in him; and who is the rainbow round about the throne of God, and the way of access unto it.”
The next time you see a rainbow let it serve as a reminder that God judges sin. He judged with a global flood, but He is also merciful, and His covenant of grace promises He will never judge again with that kind of flood. Not only that, but the rainbow, as a symbol of Christ, reminds us that He is the mediator between man and God and that those who receive the free gift of salvation are presented faultless before their Creator.