God's Weather Forecast
Doctrine of the Rain
We have looked at CLOUDS. We have seen that life is in the clouds, glory is in the clouds. Also, we found that clouds have given direction and protection. There is a marvelous spiritual application to the clouds as they come in all shades from snow white to dark black.
We have looked at the DEW. We noticed that it is in quietness that it falls and that the absorption brings healing qualities. Was it not interesting that the dew never gathers unless temperature falls and the wind cease and quietness prevails. Again, there is a unique spiritual application to the dew.
Now look at these three scriptures as they relate to this chapter dealing with RAIN
"...He made a decree for the rain..."
– Job 28:26
"If He holds back the rain, there is drought, if He lets them loose they devastate the land."
– Job. 12:5
"...He says to the rain shower, 'Be a mighty down pour.'"
– Job 37:6
"Let my teachings fall like rain."
– Deut. 32:2
Now, the main doctrine of rain is found in Isa. 55:10:
"As the rain (and the snow) come down from heaven and does not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth it will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it."
Oh, the refreshment of rain. What reader has not experienced the sensation of "rain drops keep falling on my head"? As a child playing in the rain, to the couple in love walking in the rain under an umbrella. There is, indeed, something magical about rain.
So, in the natural rain is refreshing, nourishing, delightful and useful. So, in God's spiritual scope for us it is also useful. We could liken the influence of Jesus to the rain as well as the influence of the Holy Spirit to rain.
Have you in your mind's eye, at this moment, any recollection of your life IN rain? If you have had a striking experience, then it might pop into your mind immediately. Certainly if we could ask some of the characters in the Bible to relate their experiences with rain some would receive an academy award for their part that was played.
I wish to hang this chapter on two pegs:
But first these "verse drops" on the subject of rain – if you cared to do some verse research: Gen. 12:7; 1 Sm. 12:18; 1 Kings 18:21; Ezra 10:9; Ecc. 11:3; Isa. 55:117; 28:20; Jn 2:23; Matt. 5:45; 7:25; Acts 14:17; 28:2
Now, the two pegs of this chapter.
- God's Judgment
- God's Blessings
1. God's Judgment
as seen in the rain
Let's call to the stage, Mr. Noah. Well, just the name Noah suggests rain to most people. (Genesis 7)
"Seven days from now I will send rain on the earth for 40 days and 40 nights, and I will wipe from the face of the earth every living creature I have made." (vs.4)
Everything God says always happens:
"...on that day all the springs of the great deep burst forth,, and the floodgates of the heavens were opened. And rain fell on the earth for 40 days and 40 nights." (vs. 11,12)
The story and its ending is too familiar - - Genesis 8:3, "Now the springs of the deep and the floodgates of the heavens had been closed and the RAIN had stopped falling from the sky." Noah and his family emerge to a new environment.
Why the rain? God pronounced judgment on his creation. The earth was corrupt in God's sight. It was full of violence. God saw how corrupt the earth had become for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways. So, God, being God said, "I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely (I like that word!) surely going to destroy both them and the earth. With that Noah got his assignment.
But there is another character that must come to the stage. His name? Ezra. His story? The book that bears his name, 10:9
"Within the three days, all the men of Judah and Benjamin had gathered in Jerusalem. And on the 12th day of the 9th month, all the people were sitting in the square before the house of God, greatly distressed by THE OCCASION AND BECAUSE OF THE RAIN."
Ezra, who was the priest stood up and reminded the people how unfaithful they had been in marrying foreign women. This had added to Israel's guilt. He implored the people the make confession to the Lord and do his will. He further encouraged (even commanded) the people to separate themselves from the people who were around them and from their foreign wives.
The point is that, again, because of sin they were encouraged to repent and actually do something about it. What they did and when they did it was against the backdrop of rain drops. The rain certainly hindered their act and became part of the whole scene.
Another player in regard to the judgment of God in connection with rain is SAMUEL His act comes from 1 Samuel 12: 16,17,18
And remember the background is because of the people asking for a king!
"Now then, stand still and see this great thing the Lord is about to do before your eyes! Is it not wheat harvest now? I will call upon the Lord to send thunder and RAIN. And you will realize what an evil thing you did in the eyes of the Lord when you asked for a king."
"Then Samuel called upon the Lord and that same day the Lord sent thunder and rain. So all the people stood in awe of the Lord and of Samuel."
Another act of God's judgment in regard to the element of rain is found in 1 Kings 8:35,36 SOLOMON is the character and is speaking:
"When the heavens are shut up and there is NO RAIN because your people have sinned against you and when they pray toward this place and confess your name and turn from their sin because you have afflicted them, then hear from heaven and forgive the sin of your servant, your people Israel. Teach them the right way to live, and send RAIN on the land you gave your people for an inheritance."
And, again, in the context of lack of rain (in God's punishment) the words in Deuteronomy 28: 24 read like this:
"The sky over your head will be bronze, the ground beneath you iron. The Lord will turn the rain of your country into dust and powder. It will come down from the skies until you are destroyed."
I want to motivate you to be aware when you see rain or feel rain that your spiritual man have the consciousness that in the Bible (and we can't say it is not true even today) that rain has been associated with the judgment of God.
(Let me insert at this point regarding God's judgment the obvious opposite of "no rain". I do read in Leviticus 26:3,4, 19 "IF you will live according to My laws and carefully do what I order, I will give you rain at the right time, the land will produce its crops ...(if not)...I will make your sky like iron and your ground like bronze...")
Rains have caused major floods – both in America and around the world. Just in recent years in America there have been some significant flooding. One could go to Goggle and do research if interested.
So the bottom line is God is God and He can do what He wants. The Guide Book not only suggests, but states that there have been times that rain or the lack of it is due to the punishment of disobedience.
Now, for the second aspect of rain (obviously, the one I like best!):
2. GOD'S BLESSINGS as seen in the rain
"He will be like rain falling on a mown field."
– Psalm 72:6
I always used to wonder why it was that "after" someone mowed their lawn that they then "watered" the lawn? As I mentioned in chapter 1 regarding the dew, I learned that when the grass is cut, it is like the tender shoots (blades) are open and bleeding like. It is then that they are susceptible to receive the benefit from the water (rain).
We, likewise, are compared to grass. This is a given found in the Word of God. Further our glory is likened to flowers. So, since you are grass, in one sense of the word, have you been "mowed" by the world? Have you been "cut" by the enemy? And the other side of this leaf is the fact that sometimes God does the cutting. I speak in this aspect. The King, the Lord has come to you with his sharp scythe. Now, when that happens, we must not dread it as I have done in the past, but must establish in our inner spiritual man that what will follow will be showers. Is there not a song that some have sung, "There shall be showers of blessings"?
The prophet Amos speaks of the King's mowing and that God does have many scythes and they are constantly mowing his lawn. That is a unique concept when digested.
Now, in the aspect of rain. I usually see there are just a few drops to fall first. (I know, not always, but most of the time raining begins gradually.) Drop by drop, beginning slowly and distinctly but increasing more and more until it is pouring down.
I like the words from the lips of Job (29:23)
"they waited for me as for showers and drank in my words as the spring rain."
While the reference is to Job, one could relate it to the Lord.
Let me give you a running reference to the types of rain found in the Bible. I mention them only because of the types and the importance of the last reference.
There were the FORMER RAINS. These were the showers of October, November. They softened the parched ground. Then there were the WINTER RAINS. This is the time when grains were to be sowed. The time of year was December, January and February. These were heavy rains. Then the last type rain was the LATTER RAINS. They were in April. (It is true in the spiritual aspect that April showers do bring May flowers.)
The last type rain, the LATTER RAINS were greatly appreciated because they matured and ripened the fruit and stayed the drought of summer. These were considered a wonderful special blessing. The Prophet Hosea: (6:3)
"Let us acknowledge the Lord; let us press on to acknowledge him. As surely as the sun rises he will appear; he will come to us like the winter RAINS, like the spring rains that water the earth."
There is a wonderful chorus that says, "Send us the rain Lord, send us the rain, send us the latter rain."
I believe that God has come to you - before this reading and will come to you after this reading. For the Prophet Joel writes (2:23):
Be glad, O people (____your name___) of Zion, rejoice in the Lord your God, for he has given you the autumn rains in righteousness. He sends you abundant showers, both autumn and spring rains as before."
The second scripture in this the Blessings of God in the rain comes from Ezekiel 34:26
"I will bless them and the places surrounding my hill. I will send down showers in season; there will be showers of blessings."
A question for you! What is your season at this very moment. Think about it. Is it a season of drought - both physical or spiritually? Then there is a reason for a shower. If it is a season of black clouds, then there is a reason for a showers (s). Blessings go together. They go together like links in a golden chain. One drop unites with another and then there comes a shower.
One person wrote, "Oh, look up parched plants. Open your leaves. Open your flowers for a heavenly watering." Now, Job got the sunshine after the rain, but has the rain been all waste Job wants to know. I want to know if the showers (which might be negative in your life) has nothing to do with the sunshine. The quote I saw was, "I only triumph in you when I have learned the radiance of the rain."
In 1 Kings 18:41 the words were "get up, eat and drink, for there is the sound of abundance of rain."
Let these words from God's Word settle in your heart as a prayer.
Deut 28:12 –
"The Lord will open the heavens,
the storehouse of his bounty, to send RAIN
on your land _____yours_____in season and
to bless all the work of your hands"
Jeremiah 5:24 – "Let us now fear our God who gives RAIN in its season."
and Job 29:23
"THEY ____(you for yourself and for yours)_____OPENED THEIR MOUTH WIDE AS FOR THE LATTER RAIN."
Send it on down!!!!