The Christian Post reports that a Washington pastor is “fed up with the ‘hijacking’ of the symbol of God’s covenant of peace created after what the Bible calls the great flood. Dr. Kenneth L. Hutcherson, Senior Pastor and Co-Founder of Antioch Bible Church in Redmond, Washington, “wants to rouse Christians from their apathetic slumber and ‘take back the rainbow’ from those using the symbol to push against biblical standards, especially the institution of marriage.”
I couldn’t agree more. In fact, I want to take it all back, including Jesse Jackson’s National Rainbow Coalition that claims to be about social justice, civil rights, and racial reconciliation. Jackson’s use of the rainbow has done more to divide the races than unite them.
Some time ago, my wife was asked by a national ministry to create a quilted backdrop of a large sweeping rainbow for its presentation booth that was used at various conventions around the country. I happened to attend one that was held in Atlanta. I went over to the booth and told the young lady behind the table that my wife had sewn the large background piece that adorned the display.
With a frustrated look on her face, she told me that a woman had just left the booth angrily pointing out that the rainbow is the symbol of the homosexual movement and that Christians should not be using it. The rainbow was God’s creation, and He had posted it in the heavens as a sign to Noah and future generations that He would never destroy all flesh by a flood (Gen. 9:12–17).
Pastor Hutcherson thinks that “too many Christians may have adopted the wrong kind of rainbow.” He continues:
“They’re yellow with fear, green with envy, blue with depression and red from embarrassment. So, why are believers so off-color these days? Maybe they’re tired of fighting the good fight. Maybe they haven’t seen as much progress as they’d like. Or maybe they think someone else will carry the proverbial water. Sadly, as believers, we’ve gone from echoing Luther’s, ‘Here I stand, I can do no other’ to ‘Here I sit, I want my mother.’ After all, why not put off today what someone else will postpone tomorrow?”
So then, who owns the rainbow? Just because homosexuals have misappropriated something of God’s good creation does not mean we can no longer use it. In fact, we should work to restore the image to its original redemptive meaning. Instead, many Christians refuse to display the rainbow because it has been hijacked by a small group of dedicated activists that flaunt a particular lifestyle that is condemned by the Bible, nature, and reason.
Should we stop using wood because some people seek out for themselves “a skillful craftsman to prepare an idol that will not totter” (Isa. 40:20)? Are all trees pagan because pagans have used trees to create idols? Of course not.
For millennia idol worshippers have bowed down before heavenly bodies — sun, moon, and stars — calling them their gods. There were people in Isaiah’s day who looked to “astrologers, those who prophesy by the stars, those who predict by the new moons” seeking guidance (Isa. 47:13). The people of Israel were warned by God not to lift their “eyes to heaven and see the sun and the moon and the stars, all the host of heaven, and be drawn away and worship them and serve them, those which the LORD your God has allotted to all the peoples under the whole heaven” (Deut. 4:19).
God created the heavenly bodies to “be for signs, and for seasons, and for days and years,” and to “be for lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth” (Gen. 1:14). Even with the misuse of the heavenly bodies, this did not stop God from choosing the sun, moon, and stars to symbolize His chosen nation Israel (Gen. 37:9–11; Rev. 12:1–2). And neither did it stop Him from using a star to announce the birth of Jesus (Matt. 2:2).
The Bible tells us, even in a post-fall world, “everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected, if it is received with gratitude” (1 Tim. 4:4; cf. Gen 1:31).
Christians have a history of being co-opted by liberals and secularists — everything from Harvard and Yale to the founding of America and the development of modern science. It’s time that we redeem what Christianity made possible and force unbelievers to live consistently with their materialistic worldview.