This beautiful rainbow became visible from the cabin one day this past August. It’s only the second one we’ve seen there in the many decades since we began going.

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Rainbows always used to make me think of God’s promise — the one to Noah and his family in Genesis:

“Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him: “I now establish my covenant with you and with your descendants after you and with every living creature that was with you—the birds, the livestock and all the wild animals, all those that came out of the ark with you—every living creature on earth.  I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be destroyed by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth.”

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.” *

In more recent years rainbows have become a symbol of the Gay Pride movement. I was curious as to why, so did a bit of research.

According to an article in the Washington Post, “Gilbert Baker, an artist and drag queen, first created the Rainbow Flag in 1978…. Baker’s rainbow flag actually originally had eight colors — hot pink, red, orange, yellow, green, turquoise, indigo/blue and violet — but it gradually lost its stripes until it became the six-color version most commonly used today. Each of the colors has its own significance, he says: hot pink for sex, red for life, orange for healing, yellow for sunlight, green for nature, turquoise for art, indigo for harmony and violet for spirit.”

Earlier the movement had been represented by a pink triangle, but Baker says he saw a flag “as a more powerful symbol than a seal or a sign, since it is flown to represent a nation, people or country. ‘We are a people, a tribe if you will. And flags are about proclaiming power, so it’s very appropriate’.”

So, now I know the reason for its choice. But these days when I see a rainbow, I think first of Gay Pride, and a tiny part of me feels like somehow God’s rainbow has been hijacked for a purpose other than he intended. I suppose it’s irrational, but that makes me a little sad.


* Genesis 9:8-13, NIV


Published by Carol

A freelance writer of fiction and non-fiction living on the West Coast of Canada.

6 thoughts on “Rainbows

  1. Hi Carol
    Given the painful history of Gay People in our world, perhaps it is a comfort to them and a challenge to all people, that God’s plan was that His covenant was between Him 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.” * I think the use of the rainbow by Gay Pride is not a hijacking, but a reminder to us of God’s Gracious Love for every part of His creation and that includes all human beings.

    1. I’m sure nobody intended it to be a hijacking, and it might well be a comfort, since the covenant was with “every living thing”, thus didn’t exclude anyone. And yet the promise was specifically that he would never allow a flood to destroy the earth so it’s hard to see the connection. As I said, I’m probably being irrational. 🙂

  2. Folks who are seeking often accept that God is the creator and we are the created. But at the same time they believe they must adhere to certain behaviors, thoughts, desires in order to receive the promises of God.

    Can we consider that when our soul reaches a stage in it’s natural course of creative power, it reaches something like “spiritual puberty” and we begin to seek God. We begin to experience the creative power of God within … but at first very unaware of spirituality beyond religious practice.

    But we are each a world experiencing the creative process described in Genesis. Remember it is written “let us create man in our image.” Could the “us” be God and his son (the words of truth) growing up within us?

    Once this phase of our spiritual evolution has been quickened by God, God creates something, again within, that can be likened to Noah.

    And following the instructions of God, (the unwary part of us that is ignorant of the truth and can’t hear or understand these instructions) Noah creates an arc (the Arc of the covenant, or the promises of God which survives all and cannot be destroyed) within us.

    Then comes the great flood (within) and destroys the things within us that need to go. Remember it is written that the flood swept them away and they knew it not. So it couldn’t have been a literal flood. Remember there is no time in God … so the “when” of the flood is not dated.

    Once that has taken place (over an expanse of maybe years … as we trudge along doing the best we can) God sets a rainbow in the sky promising that we will not be subjected to such a flood ever again.

    The rainbow is a promise to us all. And I love it that when pure white light (God) is refracted through a prism, the seven colors of the rainbow appear, red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet. When we see the colors of the spiritual rainbow within, we recognize them as God, and know that we have received indeed the promises.

    Love and blessings to all.

    1. Marion, it’s nice to see you here again. Not sure where in scripture supports your thought that the flood swept them away “and they knew it not”, but like you, I don’t take absolutely every word in the Bible to be literal. However, your explanation lost me along the way. You do have some interesting ideas though. I like the reminder that white light refracts through a prism into the seven colours of the rainbow, and the possibility of its symbolism.

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