Rainbows serve as a kind of bookends for the entire Bible. In Genesis, God establishes himself as a covenant-keeping God, loving and faithful. In Revelation, we see the fullness of God’s glory accompanied by a rainbow. In between these two, we see the glory of God accompanied by a rainbow as Ezekiel sees the glory of God.
Let’s look at these examples of rainbows in the Bible.
And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Genesis 9:12-13
God wanted Noah to know that he would never again destroy all life on earth. The rainbow was to be a reminder of the special trust relationship between God and his people.
We read of the prophet Ezekiel seeing God with a radiance around him like a rainbow.
Ezekiel 1:28 (NIV): Like the appearance of a rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the radiance around him.
This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. It happened when Ezekiel was appointed and commissioned as a prophet. God was promising to give Ezekiel the words he needed.
And He who was sitting was like a jasper stone and a sardius in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, like an emerald in appearance. Revelation 4:3
At the end of the age, God will create a new heaven and earth for his people. You know you can believe that he will.
Mike Shreve, in his excellent article about rainbows, reports an inspiring fact about them. His father, a pilot, reports that a rainbow seen from above is often a complete circle not a semicircle. This makes me think of the completeness of God’s promises. He will never leave anything undone. He brings everything to completion.
It also confirms a truth seen in the Revelation verse above. The rainbow is said to be “around”, just as we know it looks from above.
Our God is a covenant-keeping God. He is loyal, faithful and loving and will not stop being that way. He keeps his word and he can not lie. He is also the same today as yesterday. This promise of love and kindness is for you. When you see a rainbow, let it remind you of God’s faithfulness. He will bring his purposes to all people.
Whenever you can, stop and take the time to meditate on a rainbow. Let the rainbow of fill you with praise and reverence for the God of glory who created it.