In a recent sermon, Rev Jonathan Campbell of Newbuildings Independent Methodist Church claimed God had the original copyright on the meteorological phenomenon.
He cited chapter 9, verse 4 of the book of Genesis in the Christian Bible in support of his argument.
The verse reads: “I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth.”
Rev Campbell made the comments as ‘Gay Pride’ festivals were being celebrated or under preparation all over Ireland: Foyle Pride celebrates its 24th birthday from August 19 to 26.
Said Rev. Campbell: “God is saying, it’s my rainbow. It belongs to me. And it does. He owns the copyright for the rainbow. The copyright for the rainbow belongs to almighty God. Not to the LGBT movement.”
He pointed to the example of Australian Christian fundamentalist, Ken Ham, who’s famed for having built a model of Noah’s Ark - branded the ‘Ark Encounter’ - alongside a creationist museum in western Kentucky. Mr Ham recently “called for Christians to take back the rainbow”.
“He has led by example because he has lit up the Ark Encounter by the colours of the rainbow,” said Rev Campbell in the sermon published on SermonAudio, “the largest and most trusted library of audio sermons from conservative churches and ministries worldwide”.
He added: “Don’t worry. Ken Ham isn’t promoting the gay lifestyle. He hasn’t changed his tune.
“But he’s pointing people back to the owner of the rainbow and he is taking back the rainbow and he is saying, in a sense, hands off the rainbow, and that must be our message tonight. Hands off the rainbow because it belongs to God.”
The rainbow’s been used by a variety of political, religious and ethnic groups over the decades but has been most closely associated with Gay Pride since its adoption by the LGBT movement in the 1970s.