Rainbows, God, and Science

Sunday morning, May 17, 2020, I took my dog out and I witnessed a beautiful rainbow in the sky and I was reminded of the origin of the rainbow in Genesis.  God promised to not flood the Earth again. 

Genesis 9 King James Version (KJV)

9 “And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.

And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth, and upon every fowl of the air, upon all that moveth upon the earth, and upon all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered.

Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things.

But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall ye not eat.

And surely your blood of your lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man’s brother will I require the life of man.

Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.

And you, be ye fruitful, and multiply; bring forth abundantly in the earth, and multiply therein.

And God spake unto Noah, and to his sons with him, saying,

And I, behold, I establish my covenant with you, and with your seed after you;

10 And with every living creature that is with you, of the fowl, of thecattle, and of every beast of the earth with you; from all that go out of the ark, to every beast of the earth.

11 And I will establish my covenant with you, neither shall all flesh be cut off any more by the waters of a flood; neither shall there any more be a flood to destroy the earth.

12 And God said, This is the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations:

13 I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth.

14 And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud:

15 And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh.

16 And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth.

17 And God said unto Noah, This is the token of the covenant, which I have established between me and all flesh that is upon the earth.” (Bible Gateway King James Version 2020)

It’s kind of funny, not in a laugh out loud sense, but more of a ludicrous way that scientists feel the need to explain or prove everything through scientific method which means “a method of procedure that has characterized natural science since the 17th century, consisting in systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses”, (Powered by Oxford Dictionaries Bing Translator 2020), and that led me to wonder when the first scientist discovered rainbows or at least came up with “why” and “how” rainbows appear. 

According to (Coffeeshop Physics by Jim Pivarski 2011 – 2015),” Rainbows continued to be the bleeding edge of scientific research through the middle ages, with many Islamic scholars and Christian monks contributing to the problem. It often happens in science that the same discovery is made independently by two groups, simply because enough pieces of the solution are “in the air.” The idea of the Higgs boson, for instance, occurred to three independent groups at the same time: it should be called a Higgs-Englert-Brout-Guralnik-Hagen-Kibble boson. The reason that water droplets reflect light within 42 degrees and outside of 51 degrees was solved simultaneously by Persian scholar Kamāl al-Dīn Fārisī and Dominican monk Theodoric of Freiberg in the first decade of the fourteenth century.”

“Fārisī and Theodoric both approached the problem with the combination of mathematical rigor and experimental honesty that defines modern science. They both filled spherical balls with water to simulate a raindrop, measured angles of light entering and leaving the ball, and used these measurements to arrive at a correct geometrical interpretation of how light bounces around inside. However, there were errors in the details that weren’t resolved until René Descartes solved the problem in 1637.”

I mainly wanted to show when scientists started the whole process of a droplets and the temperature, the whole conditions for a rainbow to form, etc., etc.  Of course Genesis was written around 1450 – 1410 B.C. and according to Pivarski “the first part of the puzzle was solved by Aristotle (350 B.C.): why is the rainbow a bow?”  You can read the entire article here: http://coffeeshopphysics.com/articles/2011-10/30_the_discovery_of_rainbows/ It’s funny to me that God creates something and then scientists feel like they have to prove or disprove its origin, like how long the Earth has been formed, and how it was created, there may be another article about that coming soon.

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