“Take back the rainbow,” a slogan that originated with the Christian organization, Answers in Genesis, as a reaction to the LGBTQ community’s use of vibrant rainbow-colored flags as their symbol, just came into my awareness.

“Take back the rainbow” seems to be an odd and rather narrow minded perspective of this God given symbol. That is the trouble with gripping so tightly to representations or idols, they become a means of reactionary divisiveness.

According to the Torah, after the flooding of the earth, God spread the arc of color to seal a promise . . .

I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be destroyed by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth.” And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Genesis 9:11-13

To those of the Jewish and Christian faith, the rainbow is a holy and sacred sign of Love and hope; and no less so to LGBTQ folks who have endured maltreatment, ridicule, and discrimination. This is not to say that Jews and Christians have not suffered horrendous and unimaginable oppression and persecution. Abuse and victimization are imposed by those identified with the belief in separation and suffered by all human beings, or, if you prefer, affliction and trauma can be the result of a fallen world.

What most interests me is the light which creates this Roy G. Biv phenomenon; the incredible way that the light of our sun refracts through the waters of the atmosphere to reveal light’s infinite possibilities.

The following verses from the Hebrew Bible appear to suggest that the first, and I dare say most important, gift we have been given is light!

Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and God divided the light from the darkness. Genesis 1:3-4

Light is an important theme throughout the Bible. Jesus intuitively understood this . . .

Yeshua spoke to them again: “I am the light of the world; whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light which gives life.” John 8:12

. . . and its illuminative purpose—the Greek word for “darkness” in the verse above is “skotia” which is “used to describe ignorance of divine things.”  Within this context it seems we are being told that, if we choose, we have the ability to shine by the light of the Holy Spirit and bring healing and wholeness to a hurting world. In Matthew 5:15-16 Jesus tells us . . .

Likewise, when people light a lamp, they don’t cover it with a bowl but put it on a lampstand, so that it shines for everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before people, so that they may see the good things you do and praise your Father in heaven.

There is some question as to the origin of the following quote—Albert Einstein or Baruch Spinoza—nevertheless it works well here.

We are slowed down sound and light waves, a walking bundle of frequencies tuned into the cosmos. We are souls dressed up in sacred biochemical garments and our bodies are the instruments through which our souls play their music.

. . . and I would add . . . through which our rainbows shimmer and glisten.