The promises of God are incredible, not just for the substance contained in the promise, but also because of the proof, confirmation, and various guarantees that God provides to show how valuable His promises are. There are some who teach that God has made thousands of promises in the Bible. While some of those promises concern judgment of various kinds, the Word is consistent to show that God does not speak without also providing some sort of substance to observe to verify His Word as truth. Many criticize the Christian for having “blind faith,” yet the scriptures show that God has provided tons of tangible evidence to show the power of His promises. One must simply understand the nature of the promise, the full context of God’s Word, and then observe the evidence.
For example, this truth can be observed in Genesis 9:1-17, where God makes a covenant with Noah. As Noah and His family exit the ark after the flood, God provides a command, and then provides a promise that allows Noah and his family to fulfill the command. God commanded Noah and his family to do the same thing that He commanded Adam and Eve to do – be fruitful, multiply, and fill the earth. Though mankind was rebellious against God so that God had to destroy all of the people in the world, God’s desire did not change. Instead, the flood simply shows that God will do whatever needs to be done in order to ensure that His will is done according to His righteousness. Thus, as the command of God was in the beginning, it was the same during the time of Noah. Mankind sought to rebel against God, and for 1,656 years it appeared as if mankind was victorious. However, the Bible teaches that God will not be mocked. The Bible teaches that God is the supreme God Most High and there is no other like Him. Therefore, what He says is what will happen. It was only a matter of time.
After Noah received the command to repopulate the planet, God also blessed Noah and then blessed him again by expanding the dietary opportunities for the human race! Many people try to discredit the flood account, thinking that there wasn’t enough room for all of the animals and food on the ark for the amount of time that they were on it. However, one must recall that mankind was vegetarian until Noah and his family left the ark in Genesis 9:1-17. It wasn’t until this moment in time that God permitted people to eat meat. However, in within the conversation of opening up the door for steak, God reminded Noah about His affection for His creation. Though all of mankind deserved to die, and by extension, all of the animals as well (on account of the curse that sin brought to the world), God saved a remnant. God loved His creation. His creation was perfect before the sin of mankind tainted it. Thus, God would demonstrate His power in showing His ability to transform that, which is corrupt into something that is pure. He loved what He had made and desired His creation to live. Hence, God told Noah to abstain from eating animals with its “lifeblood” still in it. The Bible teaches that life is in blood, and so because God controls life, He did not want mankind consuming that, which was His. God values life and so told Noah to abstain from killing animals for the sake of killing animals since all life belongs to Him.
Upon speaking to Noah these things, God made His promise and then provided proof. Genesis 9:1-17 explains that God would facilitate life on the planet through the covenant He made with Noah. God promised that He would never flood the entire world again so that every living thing dies. Though sin caused the world to be judged, and sin would fill the world again, God promised that He would restrain Himself and keep from flooding the globe to destroy all living things. This is an incredible demonstration of God’s mercy. Since the flood, the planet has seen local floods, but not a global flood as scripture describes. Life has been able to live on, and as God desired, mankind has been fruitful (to a certain degree), multiplied, and filled the earth. Though the world is filled with sin and the world resembles the environment that Noah lived in before God flooded the world, God has stayed faithful to His promise to refrain from the sort of judgment that He delivered thousands of years ago.
God also stated that He would provide a visible witness to verify God’s promise of mercy. God promised that the appearance of rainbows in various parts of the world would serve as a reminder of God’s promise to be merciful. Science again provides depth of understanding to the scriptures when one understands the full context of God’s Word. The English dictionary defines a rainbow as: an optical phenomenon that is caused by both reflection and refraction of light droplets of water in the Earth’s atmosphere, resulting in a spectrum of light appearing in the sky. It is interesting that as God provided the evidence of His promise to be merciful to His creation, He did so using both “refraction” as well as “reflection.” Refraction is defined as: deflection from a straight path undergone by a light ray or energy wave in passing obliquely from one medium (as air) into another (as glass) in which its velocity is different. Based on John 9:4-5 one can examine that Jesus is the one that does the will of the Father defined as “light” to refract the will of God as “light.” Reflection is slightly different. The English dictionary defines “reflection” as: an image that is seen in a mirror or on a shiny surface, something that shows the effect, existence, or character of something. Based on 1 Corinthians 13:12 and 2 Corinthians 3:18, one can see that believers in Christ become “reflections” of the “refracting” work that is done. The Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit does this work of “reflection” in the believer. The Bible often shows that the Word of God works as water as a cleansing agent (Ephesians 5:26). The Bible also teaches that Jesus is the Word of God (John 1:14). Thus, as a rainbow is a mixture of water, refraction, and reflection for the purpose of providing visible reminders of God’s mercy, the rainbow resembles the ministry and work of Jesus Christ!
It is not by coincidence that these scientific explanations of visual phenomena so closely mirror major Biblical teachings. As God used the feast days, the sacrificial worship system, the apparel of the Levitical priesthood, and many other facets of Jewish life to paint foreshadowing pictures of the work Messiah would accomplish, God is also seen using facets of His creation to do the same thing. Romans 1:20 states that mankind is able to see God’s invisible attributes and eternal power and Godhead in His creation so that mankind is without excuse. As the ministry of Jesus Christ can be seen in the rainbow – the visible reminder of God’s mercy – the testimony of Genesis 9:1-17 proves this statement to be true! Praise God for these powerful and comforting truths that can be seen, thereby building confidence in the promises of the Living God!