In Genesis 9:13-15, God establishes the rainbow as a sign of His everlasting covenant with Noah and all life on earth. Today, the rainbow has become a symbol of something very different. The gay and lesbian communities have claimed its image as a metaphor for the diversity of humanity, especially as it is expressed in sexuality. In this context, the rainbow has been instated as the rallying symbol of our culture’s worship of divest diversity. This diversity is divest because it has become an all-inclusive mandate for each to do what is right in their own eyes (Deuteronomy 12:8; Judges 17:6, 21:25; Proverbs 12:15; 16:2, 21:2).
We seek to reclaim the image of the rainbow and return it to its original God-ordained meaning. For those who find themselves caught in between God’s New Creation and the culture of divest diversity, the rainbow becomes a strong reminder of the Lord’s promise that we will not let them drown. It then can call them out of their frantic searching into the divine diversity over which God gloried in His creation, where they can be free to live unabashedly in their true self.
But why is this rainbow, a sign of God’s promises blazoned in the sky, placed underground? One answer is that it has been driven there by the world of the false rainbow. Many of those who struggle with their identity in this culture of ‘freedom’ have found that they have had to bury their wounds and battles. A very large number of people in today’s churches are living an underground life, pious on the exterior and drowning in their secret heart. For such as these, the rainbow needs to be brought to them where they live so that’s the light of God’s promises can illuminate their underground life. While it is important for what is secret to be brought to light, a large amount of our ministry must be conducted in confidentiality, and this is another shade of meaning in the term underground.
Finally, our name invokes the historical underground railroad. A slave narrative from the 19th century tells of the glorious moment when a community of slaves in the American South were greeted by one of their own running across the fields toward them yelling "We're free! Mr. Lincoln just said we could all go free!" This account, written the day it happened, is dated 8 years after the Emancipation Proclamation.
Underground Rainbow is a call out of slavery and into freedom. This call is especially extended to two parties: the church and the sexually broken. We are living as slaves long after our freedom has been declared! The Noahic rainbow proclaims not only God's protection and providence on the journey but also our beauty and diversity in His family. I am running across the fields ripe for harvest, screaming at the top of my soul, flailing my love-scarred arms, yelling "We're free!"