As we try to get back to a more sustainable blog schedule, I want to start addressing some more current events in snippets. My plan is to keep Thursday as the “big blog” day, but as always we’ll just see where the Scripture leads us.
Today, I wanted to talk a bit about the progressive assault on Christians who do not wish to be forced to celebrate homosexual unions. My wording is intentional, because what you see in the media is a complete twisting of the facts to support the LGBTQ(…) narrative that attempts to paint themselves as victims of bigotry. Florists and bakers are the easy targets right now, but churches are being targeted, too (mainly via their tax-exemption status). Over the past several weeks, I’ve seen far too many LGBTQ(…) flags on the news and in social media, so the nagging question has been, “what possessed them to take the rainbow as the symbol of their rebellion?” I looked up what the movement claims to be the origin of their rainbow flag and I’ll share a link at the end, but what the world claims as their own and how they justify it is irrelevant. Wholly and completely irrelevant.
Psalm 24:1-2 (ESV)
24 The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein, 2 for he has founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers.
Therefore, our focus will be on what God has declared in His Word regarding His Rainbow. Our text today will be Genesis 8:13 through 9:25 (ESV).
Genesis 8:13-19 (ESV)
13 In the six hundred and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried from off the earth. And Noah removed the covering of the ark and looked, and behold, the face of the ground was dry. 14 In the second month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, the earth had dried out. 15 Then God said to Noah,16 “Go out from the ark, you and your wife, and your sons and your sons’ wives with you.17 Bring out with you every living thing that is with you of all flesh—birds and animals and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth—that they may swarm on the earth, and be fruitful and multiply on the earth.” 18 So Noah went out, and his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives with him. 19 Every beast, every creeping thing, and every bird, everything that moves on the earth, went out by families from the ark.
Here we see a precise accounting of the day that Noah, his family, and every living creature preserved by the Ark finally stepped out to repopulate the earth. We have a similarly precise account of the day the flood began in Genesis 7:11 (ESV) “11 In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on that day all the fountains of the great deep burst forth, and the windows of the heavens were opened”. Now the Hebrew calendar followed the lunar cycles and each month was numbered (as opposed to modern secular calendars being solar years). There are 12 months in the ancient Hebrew calendar, but they have a leap month much in the same way we have leap days. Without getting too terribly bogged down in calculations, what we can say is that the Ark protected the remnant of the Earth for at least a full 1 year and 27 days. Now, a year for a man who had already lived 600 might seem to pass by more quickly than a year for a young pup of 36 such as myself; however, given the living conditions on the Ark and the knowledge that God had utterly destroyed the Earth under Noah’s very feet… such a comparison become moot and trite.
Genesis 8:20-22 (ESV)
20 Then Noah built an altar to the Lord and took some of every clean animal and some of every clean bird and offered burnt offerings on the altar. 21 And when the Lord smelled the pleasing aroma, the Lord said in his heart, “I will never again curse the ground because of man, for the intention of man’s heart is evil from his youth. Neither will I ever again strike down every living creature as I have done. 22 While the earth remains, seed-time and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease.”
Genesis 9:1-17 (ESV)
9 And God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth. 2 The fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth and upon every bird of the heavens, upon everything that creeps on the ground and all the fish of the sea. Into your hand they are delivered. 3 Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you. And as I gave you the green plants, I give you everything.4 But you shall not eat flesh with its life, that is, its blood. 5 And for your lifeblood I will require a reckoning: from every beast I will require it and from man. From his fellow man I will require a reckoning for the life of man.
6 “Whoever sheds the blood of man,
by man shall his blood be shed,
for God made man in his own image.
7 And you, be fruitful and multiply, increase greatly on the earth and multiply in it.”
8 Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him, 9 “Behold, I establish my covenant with you and your offspring after you, 10 and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the livestock, and every beast of the earth with you, as many as came out of the ark; it is for every beast of the earth. 11 I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.” 12 And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: 13 I have set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. 14 When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds, 15 I will remember my covenant that is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh. And the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. 16 When the bow is in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.” 17 God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant that I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth.”
God set His bow in the cloud. The Rainbow is the Lord’s. He set it in the clouds and He declared what it symbolizes. It symbolizes His covenant with His Creation, with the Earth and everything on the Earth. It is a promise that the earth will receive no new curses on account of man, for man is born dead in sin, and the intention of man’s heart is evil from his youth. Read throughout Revelation, and you’ll not see any mention of a second global flood. As long as the earth remains, the seasons and days will continue. This is why every prophesy regarding the Day of Christ’s return talks about heaven and earth being rolled up like a scroll, or passing away. God’s covenant is all of His Creation. When the end comes, it will indeed be the end of this world. That is why everything longs for the New Heaven and the New Earth.
Genesis 9:18-25 (ESV)
18 The sons of Noah who went forth from the ark were Shem, Ham, and Japheth. (Ham was the father of Canaan.) 19 These three were the sons of Noah, and from these the people of the whole earth were dispersed.
20 Noah began to be a man of the soil, and he planted a vineyard. 21 He drank of the wine and became drunk and lay uncovered in his tent. 22 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father and told his two brothers outside. 23 Then Shem and Japheth took a garment, laid it on both their shoulders, and walked backward and covered the nakedness of their father. Their faces were turned backward, and they did not see their father’s nakedness. 24 When Noah awoke from his wine and knew what his youngest son had done to him, 25 he said,
“Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be to his brothers.”
Indeed, the problem of sin was not solved by the Flood, for God preserved sinful man from total destruction. And we see here, the first recorded sinful act committed upon another person, is one of sexual immorality (namely incest, adultery, rape, and homosexuality). How much time had passed since they left the Ark? We only know it was long enough for a vineyard to be planted and harvested and for Noah to drink of its wine. Beyond that, we don’t know how much time had passed, but given that they had spent over a year in the Ark as God was sparing their lives, we see how deeply rooted the curse of sin lies buried in the heart of man. Still, Canaan was cursed by the sin of his father against Noah. Not unlike how we ALL are cursed by the sin of Adam. But we also see Japheth and Shem blessed for their righteous acts, for resisting the temptation to sin. God keeps His covenants, even when we fail Him. God preserved the Messianic line from Adam to Jesus, so that in Christ we might have the Hope of Salvation promised on the day sin and death entered the world.
Which brings be back to the LGBTQ(…) use of the rainbow flag. Regardless of whatever history they claim on their use of the rainbow, the Rainbow has a history and belongs to Almighty God. It’s His Rainbow, placed by Him into the clouds as a reminder of His covenant with the Earth and every living creature on it. Not only has the LGBTQ(…) taken God’s rainbow and created of it a flag for their rebellion against God’s design for man and woman in sexual purity, they do so in the name of “Gay Pride”.
Psalm 10:2-11 (ESV)
2 In arrogance the wicked hotly pursue the poor;
let them be caught in the schemes that they have devised.
3 For the wicked boasts of the desires of his soul,
and the one greedy for gain curses and renounces the Lord.
4 In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek him;
all his thoughts are, “There is no God.”
5 His ways prosper at all times;
your judgments are on high, out of his sight;
as for all his foes, he puffs at them.
6 He says in his heart, “I shall not be moved;
throughout all generations I shall not meet adversity.”
7 His mouth is filled with cursing and deceit and oppression;
under his tongue are mischief and iniquity.
8 He sits in ambush in the villages;
in hiding places he murders the innocent.
His eyes stealthily watch for the helpless;
9 he lurks in ambush like a lion in his thicket;
he lurks that he may seize the poor;
he seizes the poor when he draws him into his net.
10 The helpless are crushed, sink down,
and fall by his might.
11 He says in his heart, “God has forgotten,
he has hidden his face, he will never see it.”
Also in Romans,
Romans 1:18-32 (ESV)
18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. 19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. 21 For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.
24 Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, 25 because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.
26 For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; 27 and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.
28 And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. 29 They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 32 Though they know God’s righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.
That last point is the most powerful and relevant to our day and today’s post. The problem we face now, even within the professing church, is that the world isn’t happy with mere tolerance of their sin, but they insist that we join them in celebration of their sin, under a banner that mocks God’s covenant by way of reminding Him of His promise as they ignore His commands.
These people are not our enemies; rather, they are lost… dead in their sins and trespasses. It is to them that we must continue to preach Repentance and the Forgiveness of sin through the Blood of Jesus Christ. We pray that the Living God have mercy on them, and extend grace to them that they might hear and receive the Gospel of Grace. Your flesh is no different from theirs, it continues to desire sin and self-gratification as it always did, only by the Grace of God you have been made alive in Him and have been given God the Holy Spirit to comfort, strengthen, and grow you into the fullness of Christ. For we were all like them, and only by the Grace of God did we hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ, repent, and received salvation from the kingdom of darkness, and a promise of eternal life in Christ.
It is tempting to lash out, be confrontational, and to condemn the lost for being lost. Such righteous indignation belongs to Christ, not us. For we are not of ourselves righteous; rather, we rely on the righteousness of Christ to carry us through judgement, in the same way that Noah relied on the Ark. It is not for us to condemn those who blaspheme and hate God, they have already done so. Instead, it is for us to stand firmly on the Word of God, preach the Gospel, and be a living testimony to the greatness of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
2 Peter 3:13-18 (ESV)
13 But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells. 14 Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace. 15 And count the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him, 16 as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters.There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures. 17 You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability. 18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.