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…
The appointment of the sign of the covenant, or of the rainbow as God's bow of peace, whereby there is at the same time expressed —
1. The elevation of men above the deification of the creature (since the rainbow is not a divinity, but a sign of God, an appointment which even idolatrous nations appear not to have wholly forgotten, when they denote it God's bridge, or God's messenger).
2. Their introduction to the symbolic comprehension and interpretation of natural phenomena, even to the symbolizing of forms and colours.
3. That God's compassion remembers men in their dangers. 4 The setting up of a sign of light and fire, which, along with its assurance that the earth will never be drowned again in water, indicates at the same time its future transformation through light and fire.
(J. P. Lange, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: 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: