#569: Rainbow Tails

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Reflections by the Pond
September 17, 2012

One benefit of rising early each day is the opportunity to witness God's creative hand in the morning sky. And this morning, walking out to the gravel road to retrieve the mail, was no exception. Reaching our mailbox I looked west to the distant hills and the darkening clouds that prophesied welcome rain.

There in the northwest, just above the horizon, was the tail of a faint rainbow. I looked toward the southwest, and there was the matching tail of the same rainbow, many miles from its mate. Remarkably, between the two tails, where the completed arc would be, was brilliant blue sky.

° ° °

In the heat of the recent Democrat convention, one politico took issue with the source of our rights as Americans, stating that our rights actually come from government. This surely would have surprised and alarmed Thomas Jefferson, who penned in our founding document, our venerated Declaration of Independence,

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.—That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed... (emphasis added)

The brilliant experiment called the United States of America is founded on the singular premise that its citizens enjoy basic rights that come not from a ruling sovereign or sitting government, but from holy God. Indeed, government is necessary only to retain and secure those God-given rights—and (here's the kicker), what little power government legally does have is given it by the citizens.

So the order is God > Citizenry > Government—not, as those on the left would have it: Government > Citizenry (the left would just as soon forget about this silly God business).

° ° °

The original rainbow, created by God in the time of Noah, was a sign in the heavens to punctuate God's first covenant with man.

Then God spoke to Noah and to his sons with him, saying, "Now behold, I Myself do establish My covenant with you, and with your descendants after you; and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the cattle, and every beast of the earth with you; of all that comes out of the ark, even every beast of the earth. I establish My covenant with you; and all flesh shall never again be cut off by the water of the flood, neither shall there again be a flood to destroy the earth." God said, "This is the sign of the covenant which I am making between Me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all successive generations; I set My bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a sign of a covenant between Me and the earth."

Genesis 9:8-13

The most fundamental rights we have as human beings—moving about the earth, managing the land and its beasts—were declared and bestowed by Jehovah God millennia ago.

And God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth. The fear of you and the terror of you will be on every beast of the earth and on every bird of the sky; with everything that creeps on the ground, and all the fish of the sea, into your hand they are given. Every moving thing that is alive shall be food for you; I give all to you, as I gave the green plant."

Genesis 9:1-3

Our rainbow today is broken; just like that rainbow this morning—split apart, two detached tails with apparently nothing holding them together—modern man has broken apart the rainbow to replace God's eternal promises with institutions and passions designed by himself.

In this man has declared himself to be lord—not just over the beasts of the field, but over God Himself.

The ancient man approached God (or even the gods) as the accused person approaches his judge. For the modern man the roles are reversed. He is the judge; God is on the dock. He is quite a kindly judge; if God should have a reasonable defence for being the god who permits war, poverty and disease, he is ready to listen to it. The trial may even end in God's acquittal. But the important thing is that Man is on the Bench and God in the Dock.

C. S. Lewis

Is your essential life ordered by the Lord God, or by the pretender institutions of this epoch? Is God on His throne in your life? Do you live by His eternal covenant, or by the inconstant vagaries of man?

Is your rainbow broken or whole?