“Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him, “As for me, I am establishing my covenant with you and your descendants after you, and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the domestic animals, and every animal of the earth with you, as many as came out of the ark. I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of a flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.” (Genesis 9:8 – 11)
How do you define “flood”? How would you explain what it means for “all flesh to be cut off by the waters”? Is your definition broad or narrow? Finally, how are your definitions defined by what we now understand and expect of technology and science? I ask that last question because I sometimes think of the flood as the reset for humanity and creation. It was not going so well, so the Divine started over with more dependable and knowable “stock”. In technological terms it would be “factory reset”.
“God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: I have set my bow in the clouds, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds, I will remember my covenant that is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. When the bow is in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.” (Verses 12 – 16)
It is interesting, beloved reader, that rainbows are created by light passing through the moisture in the air and being reflected & scattered according the the qualities/properties of light. That may not be a “good” scientific explanation, but under girds my point that relatively small amounts of moisture created the visible sign of the covenant that the Divine created with Moses and his family.
“God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant that I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth.” (Verse 17)
This scripture also marks the place when/where there was to be a restart in how humanity came to have their sins forgiven and to relate in a new way to the Divine through Jesus Christ. Not the “square one” of the flood but certainly the potential for a reset for the relationship between humanity and the Divine.
Another marker in this re-imagining is Ash Wednesday; the day when we grief once more and with much greater depth that our relationship with the Divine has gotten so messed up. Now, that is not to say that all of humanity has messed up. After all, there are still rainbows to gaze on. But I am getting ahead of myself; and quite honestly, I am not sure what I am going to say and feel about the Ash Wednesday scripture passages. But we have markers, beloved reader. And we have assurances that we are not cut off from the Divine. And that in fact the Divine has a plan that is for our good, and salvation. Shalom & Selah!