A rainbow as the brightness around the man who is sitting on the throne signifies the splendor and glory around the Lord on the throne. At Noah’s time the rainbow in the cloud was a sign of God’s faithfulness in keeping His covenant with man and every living creature that He would never again destroy mankind with a flood (see note Gen. 9:131a).
A rainbow can be considered as being produced from the combining of three basic colors — red, yellow, and blue. Red, the color of fire, refers to God’s holiness; yellow, the color of electrum, signifies God’s glory; and blue, the color of the sapphire throne, signifies God’s righteousness. God’s righteousness, holiness, and glory are three divine attributes that keep sinners away from God (see note Gen. 3:241a). However, Christ came, died on the cross to satisfy the requirements of God’s righteousness, holiness, and glory, and was resurrected, and He is now our righteousness, holiness, and glory (1 Cor. 1:30). Because we, the believers, are now in Christ, in the sight of God we bear the appearance of Christ as righteousness, holiness, and glory. This is the appearance of a rainbow as a testimony of God’s faithfulness in sparing us and saving us, the fallen ones, from His judgment on sinners. In the New Jerusalem, a city whose foundations have the appearance of a rainbow (Rev. 21:19-20), we, the aggregate of the saved ones, will be a rainbow reflecting the brightness of God’s righteousness, holiness, and glory and testifying forever that our God is righteous and faithful (see note Rev. 21:191a, par. 2). As portrayed in this chapter, the Christian life and the church life will consummate in such a rainbow. At that point God’s eternal plan will have been accomplished.