Jump Start # 2596
Revelation 4:3 “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.”
The official word is “spectroscopy.” That is the study of rainbows. There are twelve different kinds of rainbows that are recognized and labeled by the scientific community. I got to thinking about rainbows the other day. I was out driving and there was a light rain coming down and the sun was coming out. The perfect combination for finding a rainbow. I never get tired of seeing rainbows. On rare occasions a person might catch a double rainbow. That’s really special. The homosexual community has kidnapped the rainbow as a symbol of their freedom and rights. But long, long before that, the rainbow belonged to God. It still does. The rainbow was a promise first given to Noah and his family. A promise that God has kept all these centuries later. God always keeps His promises.
In our verse today, the rainbow is found in Heaven. It is around the throne. The color has changed. Rather than the primary colors of red and yellow, Heaven’s rainbow is green, the color of emeralds. And, unlike our rainbows, that require rain and sunlight, and they do not last very long, Heaven’s rainbow is much different. There is no sun in Heaven. I doubt that there is any rainy days in Heaven. And, this rainbow isn’t visible for just a few short moments. It seems to be a permanent fixture above the throne of God. It is a constant reminder that God has promises and He will keep them.
Let’s consider a few of the promises of God:
- We have a divine appointment with death (Heb 9:27). Death comes and then the judgment. We’ve seen this promise fulfilled in every generation. Knowing that God keeps His promises, we ought to prepare ourselves for what we know is going to happen. We can spend so much time focused on this life that we forget that there is a life that lasts much longer on the other side of the door of death. The secular world can’t come to terms with this. Everything possible is done to try to keep a person alive. Sitting in a wheel chair, nearly lifeless and unable to communicate or hardly functioning is viewed as better than dying. Yet, for the child of God, we know there are other Heavenly promises connected to the appointment with death. We will live on and on. If we are walking with the Lord, things are only going to get better once we pass through that door of death. An unbelieving generation sees death as the end of the journey. We know better. We have the promises of God that attest to this.
- God will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able (1 Cor 10:13). When a person says, “I just couldn’t help it,” that’s not the right answer. Yes, they could. They may be weak. They may not have tried very hard. But God doesn’t put us in impossible situations. This same passage also promises that with temptation God provides a way out. There is an escape hatch. You don’t have to sin. The temptation is not greater than you. Now, there are certainly things we can do that will help us be stronger or they will make us weaker. Strengthening your faith will help you resist temptation. Having your mind set on things above will help you look for the door of escape that God provides. Sin is a choice. It’s a bad choice. But it’s a choice that we make.
- God promises to never desert you nor forsake you (Heb 13:5). God is with you, always. When you journey alone through those dark valleys, God is with you. When you stand alone before the trials of life, God is with you. The only time God is not with you is when you turn your back to Him and walk away. The prodigal found himself to be all alone with the pigs. His father still loved him and wanted the best for him. However, his father was not in the pig pen with him. When you are alone, you are not, if you are walking with the Lord. He is with you. He promises never to leave you. And in this time of social distancing, stuck at home, you are not alone. God is with you. This is why worshipping at home is essential until we can be together. God is there. God is with you. He deserves your best.
- God promises to forgive those who walk with Him (1 Jn 1:7). Our salvation is not wrapped around perfect church attendance, or a full knowledge of God’s word. Our hope is in the love and grace of God. Our faith and His grace is what will save us. This is a pivotal point for so many of us to see. A person looks at his life and realizes that he just hasn’t done enough. I had a discussion with someone about this recently. In tears, this person confessed, “I just haven’t done enough for the Lord.” Who has? And, just what is “enough?” We haven’t built arks. We have spent a night with lions. We’ve not sailed the seas to preach in far away places. We’ve not had people throw rocks at us because of what we believe. How is Heaven possible when we study the lives of Daniel, Joseph or Paul?
First, we must stop thinking that we have to do what they did. We must stop comparing ourselves to others. Two talent doesn’t feel bad because he didn’t do what five talent did. He did what he could do. Second, we must move past this idea of if I do “enough” God will open the doors to Heaven for me. That is salvation by works. And, in that system, you can never do enough. Our hope is in God. Saved by grace through faith is what Ephesians were told. Do you believe? Are you truly trying? Are you making adjustments for the better as you journey through life? Stop beating yourself up and see Heaven’s rainbow. God will forgive you if you keep up with Him. Don’t stop until He stops you. Don’t give up. Don’t give in.
- God promises to send Jesus (2 Pet 3:9-11). The day of the Lord will come. God promised. Things will change when He comes. The kingdom will be delivered to God. The dead, all the dead, will be raised. The judgment will take place. The earth will be destroyed. And, eternity in Heaven or Hell will be realized. That means, for the faithful, things are only bound to get better. For the unbelieving, things are destined to only get worse, much worse than they ever expected. God promised.
Rainbows—more than pretty sights in the sky. Reminders of a faithful God who keeps His promises.