Genesis 9:8-17

Talks for Growing Christians

The Rainbow as a Sign of God's Covenant

Genesis 9:8-17

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Lesson Number 21

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. The rainbow is a guarantee that God cares for His creatures.
  2. The rainbow is a guarantee that God keeps His promises.

Practical Application

  1. There’s more than a pot of gold for us at the end of the rainbow.


  1. Is the Noahic Covenant in effect today? Substantiate your answer.
  2. The Noahic Covenant is the authority for biblical government on this earth. Explain.
  3. What guarantee do we have that God will never again destroy earth with a world wide flood?
  4. What causes a rainbow?
  5. Explain the significance of the “bow,” as derived from ancient treaties.


  1. Yes, the Noahic Covenant is still in effect today. The Noahic Covenant was made with Noah and his sons and their descendants. this includes us because we are all descendants of this family.
  2. The Noahic Covenant gives nations the right to maintain law and order, even to the extent of capital punishment in the case of murder.
  3. God said that he would not do so. His word is a guarantee. See Genesis 9:15. The rainbow is the sign that God gave to confirm this covenant. See Genesis 9:12.
  4. The dispersion of sunlight shining through the rain.
  5. The Hebrew word for “bow” is the same word that is used for a bow used to shoot arrows in battle. When peace covenants and peace treaties were made in ancient days, the warrior would put away or hang up his battle bow as symbolic that there was now peace. God said, “I set my bow in the cloud.”


  1. The rainbow is a guarantee that God cares for His creatures. When you see a rainbow, don’t just admire its beauty, remember that it is a guarantee that God cares for both people and animals. Share this with others as a testimony to God’s care. See also 1 Peter 5:7. Think of examples of God’s care in your life.
  2. The rainbow is God’s guarantee that He keeps His promises. Consider His promise in Hebrews 13:5. You can be sure of this promise. Remember that truth the next time you see a rainbow.


  1. There’s more than a pot of gold for us at the end of the rainbow. Believe this! Contemplate the heavenly scene awaiting you where there is yet another rainbow. See Revelation 4:3.

Key Verses

  • “God said to Noah and His sons, ‘I establish My covenant with you and with your descendants after you’.” Genesis 9:8-9
  • “I establish My covenant with you: Never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood; never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.” Genesis 9:11
  • “This is the sign of the covenant...I set My rainbow in the is an everlasting covenant.” Genesis 9:12-13, 16

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