As we saw, the Bible teaches that the rainbow is a sign of God’s covenantal promise never to destroy the earth by water again. Sure, thanks to science, we now know that a rainbow occurs when sunlight is both refracted and reflected in drops of water, dispersing the light at various angles.
Light enters a raindrop at one point, is reflected off the back of that drop at another, and leaves at another, creating the colors that we see. Poet John Keats feared that science would
unweave a rainbow, but even if we could parse, measure, predict, and quantify everything about a rainbow down to the innards of each photon and the underbelly of every quark, what would that prove other than that we understand better the natural laws God used to create the signs of this covenant promise? Science might one day be able to explain everything about how rainbows are made-even to 25 digits to the right of a decimal point-but it can never explain why they are made.
We, though, know why. Because God created our world in such a way that when sunlight and mist are in right relationships to each other, the mist breaks up the light by refracting and reflecting it at different angles that create bands of electromagnetic waves which, when reaching our eyes, imprint the image of rainbows in our minds. And He did it (the
why that science can never explain) to remind us of His covenant promise that never again would He destroy the earth by water.
- What are some other crucial truths, revealed by the Bible, that science can never teach us? In fact, could you argue that the most important things we know could never be revealed by science? If so, what truths would they be?
- In class, go over the crucial relationship between faith and works in the plan of salvation. That is, what is the role of faith, and what is the role of works, and how do they relate to the Christian experience?
- What does it mean to say that the law is engraved on our hearts? How does this idea show the perpetuity of the law, even under the New Covenant?