The Two Feet Of The Body Of Christ
by Bruce Baber, 7-26-08
Science teaches us that there are many things that our senses cannot detect in the natural world. There are ultraviolet and infrared bands of light which our eyes cannot see. There are both sounds and scents that we are not equipped to hear or smell. But, just because we cannot perceive these things in the natural world, it does not mean they do not exist. Who hasn't observed that a dog hears sounds we cannot, or picks up a scent that to us is undetectable?
God, who is the Creator of the natural world, operates in the spiritual realm according to the same principles. Hidden in the Bible, God's inspired Word, there are a great many mysteries which can pass undetected. However, because they are hidden, it is by no means true that they cannot be found. The Holy Spirit is our guide and teacher. In John 14:26, The Amplified Bible says,
"But the Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, Standby) the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in My name (in My place, to represent Me and act on My behalf), He will teach you all things..."
As far as I can determine, there are three ways that the Bible instructs us. There are prophecies (both plainly recognized and veiled). There are teachings (both plainly spoken and veiled). There are instances of symbolic foreshadowing (both plainly perceived and veiled). It is the Holy Spirit which lifts the veil in all these cases. So, just as there are colors our eyes can't see; pitches our ears can't hear; scents our noses can't detect, there are spiritual truths which we must have assistance to discover.
While we are searching the scriptures for these things which are hidden, we must be very careful. Remember this important truth. If you come across something that you believe is a veiled or hidden subject, it must always be verified by prophecy, teachings and symbolic foreshadowing, all three. Just like the parallels that the Jewish people used in their poetic writings, one thought or idea must reinforce another.
Let's take a look at a case of foreshadowing, or symbolism. When the Jews were slaves in Egypt, Moses instructed them to take the blood of a lamb and mark the thresholds of their doors with its blood. When the angel of death came, the Jews were spared while the firstborn of all the Egyptians died in a single night. The Jews celebrate this event as Passover. Yet, we Christians accept this as an instance of foreshadowing Jesus' death and provision of salvation. As we know, this is indeed a case where foreshadowing is born out by both teachings and prophecies. All three support the truth. All three work together.
I was in the delivery room with my wife when both of our children were born. I remember how anxious and excited I was as a proud, expectant father. Both Suzanne and I were so relieved and happy when the doctor announced, "I can see the head!" In the moments that followed, there was a body and last, those two tiny feet. Our joy was fulfilled when we saw each of our children born whole and complete into this world.
The Two Feet Represent the Two Raptures
Of course, the joy we felt cannot equal God's joy with the birth of His church. After all, He had waited and planned for it for so long! Is the analogy accurate? Is the comparison of a baby's birth to the church's birth a fair comparison to make? Absolutely! The church is the Body of Christ and He is the head. The Bible states this in a number of passages quite clearly. See Ephesians 4:12 and 5:23.
Here also is what Paul wrote in I Corinthians.
1 Corinthians 12:12-26
12 The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. 13 For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body--whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free--and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. 14 Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. 15 If the foot should say, "Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body.
And further on in I Corinthians 12: 18-20 it reads:
18 But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. 19 If they were all one part, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, but one body.
Knowing that we are part of the body of Christ, we may also find it interesting to go back and read Psalm 139. It certainly speaks about how God formed us in the womb and knew us before we were born as individuals into this world. However, when we view this Psalm in terms of the birth of the church as Christ's body, it takes on both a very symbolic and prophetic meaning.
In fact, there are many places in the Bible that hint at what was to become the future birth of the church. But, once we begin to focus on the birth of the church and begin to think in those terms, we are left with a very obvious conclusion. If the church is born into this world like a baby, with first the head (Christ) appearing, followed in succession by the other parts of the body, then the end-time church would naturally have to be the feet.
We, the end-time church, are the feet of the Body of Christ! This fact is important. It allows us to see if God has foreshadowed any events which relate to this part of the church. Now that we know how to look for it, we find that the Bible has a great deal to tell us!
It seems staggering to me that so much has been written on the two feet of the image which appears in Nebuchadnezzar's dream which is found in the book of Daniel. Volumes and volumes! Daniel, himself, tells us that the feet of the statue represent the end-time empire. We know this is the revived Roman Empire. Much has been said in books, sermons, lectures and discussions about the feet of the statue. If the Bible gives us so much to go on regarding the feet of the image in the book of Daniel, isn't it possible that the Bible would give us at least as much detail about the end-time church? In fact, it gives us a great amount.
One Heel Will be Bruised
All the way back in Genesis 3:15, we find a veiled reference relating to a foot, or heel, which will be injured by Satan. Practically everyone agrees that this is a reference to the crucifixion of Christ. So do I. Jesus' feet were pierced when He was crucified. Genesis 3:15 certainly does symbolize the crucifixion event. However, it is also a veiled foreshadowing of an event which pertains to the end-time church. How do I know this? Because the Bible doesn't make mistakes. Genesis 3:15 clearly says heel (singular). It does not say heels (plural). During the crucifixion, both of Jesus' feet were pierced. I am utterly convinced that when God was speaking in Genesis 3:15, He was at the same time making a veiled prophecy about the end-time church!
Just as the statue in Daniel has two feet which represent the end-time world power, so the end-time church is represented by two feet, one of which will be bruised, or persecuted by Satan! God says that one heel will be bruised, not two. What happens to the other foot? The answer is simple. One part of the church (one foot) will have gone in the Rapture! It was the front foot.
I remember something that happened to me when I was a young boy. I was fishing with some older boys at a pond. Sunning itself beside the water's edge was a poisonous copperhead snake. I didn't see it. I stepped right on top of it. The moment it moved under my foot, I saw it and jumped. That snake was mad! It came after me. Thankfully, my friends were there to chase it away with their fishing poles. But, had that snake caught me, it would surely have bitten me on the back of my heel. I was running from it. My heel was the only place it could have struck me. When Satan chases and persecutes the end-time church, which is represented symbolically by the feet, he will surely bruise and afflict the heel of the foot which is fleeing from him. One foot of the church will be beyond his grasp. It will have departed.
Enoch and Elijah
Back to foreshadowing. If one foot of the church is taken in the Rapture, we should find it foreshadowed in the scriptures. It's there, of course. Enoch. We find him raptured way back in Genesis. He is the first one to have ever been taken away. But, he isn't the last one! There is further foreshadowing of a second Rapture. Elijah. He foreshadows the Rapture of the second foot of the persecuted end-time church.
Elijah's life perfectly represents the church of the persecution during the Tribulation. At various times he had to go into hiding. He was persecuted by King Ahab and his wife Jezebel who participated in the vilest forms of idolatry. Of special interest is the fact that during a period of about three years, there was a severe drought and famine. He had to leave his country and live with a widow who miraculously supplied him with food. On another occasion, Elijah was supplied with food by ravens. Later, he was helped by an angel who provided food and water. At various times, Elijah would say he was the only believer left.
Taken together, all these instances make a dramatic parallel to the events which transpire for the Christians who have to go through the persecution. Not being able to buy or sell, they will be forced from their homes and depend on miraculous provision from God. They too may feel like they are the only true believers who are left. However, they are not alone. God will not abandon them just as he did not abandon Elijah. Moreover, the persecuted Christians will have the same source of strength that Elijah had. They will receive the Holy Spirit. Remember what the Amplified Bible calls the Holy Spirit? He is called the Comforter, Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, and Standby.
The Departure and Return of the Holy Spirit
There are many who teach that when the Pre-Tribulation church goes in the (first) Rapture, the Holy Spirit departs with them. This is only partially true. The Holy Spirit does go with them. However, he does return. Just like our blessed Savior who departed, but will come again. Can this be proven? Yes! Beyond any doubt.
In John 14:16, Jesus said, "I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another comforter, that He may abide with you forever." A little further on, Jesus said, "I will not leave you comfortless." I would call this teaching pretty direct. But, let's see if it fits with what we know about the end-time church being the symbolic feet of Christ. Earlier, I said that once we knew that the end-time church is symbolically represented by the feet of Christ, it would lead us to discover what God has in store. Let's find out.
On two separate occasions, Jesus' feet were anointed with a costly perfume. Luke 7:38 and John 12:3 describe two separate, but similar events. In each case, Jesus' feet were anointed with costly perfume. Read the passages and compare them for yourself. They are two separate events! One occurs in the house of a Pharisee and other event occurs in the home of Mary and Martha. Here is what John Wesley said in his commentary on Luke 7:37. "A woman - Not the same with Mary of Bethany, who anointed him six days before his last passover. "
The perfume is symbolic of the Holy Spirit. What a perfectly harmonious analogy! The church which goes in the first Rapture has the Holy Spirit. Later, the remaining church is given the Holy Spirit! This brings me to an important point. The very reason that part of the church is left behind at the first Rapture is because they are living without the power of the Holy Spirit in their lives right now! They will be left out of the first event and have to live through a terrible persecution because they are not living for Jesus in the present. What a terrible tragedy!
I believe that for a period of time, the church of the persecution (symbolized by the second foot of Christ) will have to endure without the Holy Spirit. They will be like Jeremiah, who in Lamentations 1:16, said, "For these things I weep; my eyes flow with tears, because a comforter, one who could refresh and restore my soul, is far from me..." (Amplified Bible). But, please remember that God will not abandon this church. They will be sent the Holy Spirit. After all, it was ten days after Jesus departed this world before the Holy Spirit was sent.
The Foolish Virgins
Jesus taught a parable which is a warning about being caught without enough of the Holy Spirit at His coming to take the church into Heaven. It is known as the parable of the foolish virgins.
Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there not be enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door (which opens in heaven at the Rapture) was shut (like the door of the Ark) Afterward came also the other virgins, saying Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not.
Christ is the bridegroom coming for His bride, the church. The oil represents the Holy Spirit. We should not be like foolish virgins and be left behind at the first trumpet call.
The Servants Who Missed the Wedding
The following scripture may be the clincher. Read Luke 12:36. The characters are not virgins waiting to be taken to a wedding. They are servants waiting for their master to return for them after he has been to the wedding!
35 "Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, 36 like men waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him. 37 It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes. I tell you the truth, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them. 38 It will be good for those servants whose master finds them ready, even if he comes in the second or third watch of the night.
Does this mean that the first foot caught up in the rapture joins the others in Heaven to be the bride of Christ and join Him in the marriage supper? Does this mean that the second foot which is caught up later is not the bride, but is still considered His servants? These questions occur to me and I think the answer may be "yes."
The book of Joel has a passage about the Holy Spirit being given to waiting servants…
Joel: 17 'And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams. 18 And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; And they shall prophesy. 19 I will show wonders in heaven above And signs in the earth beneath: Blood and fire and vapor of smoke. 20 The sun shall be turned into darkness, And the moon into blood, Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord. 21 And it shall come to pass That whoever calls on the name of the Lord Shall be saved.'
Two Trumpet Calls
When the Jews were wandering in the wilderness, before entering the Promised Land, there were two trumpet calls in the morning to prepare the people to move out. The first one called the leaders of the tribes. The second one called the remainder of the people. Just as with the ancient Jews, there will be two trumpet calls for the church. Both trumpet calls are to the two coming rapture events.
If you are reading this before the first Rapture, I urge you to pray for the fullness of the Holy Spirit in your life and the lives of all your loved ones. Do it now! Don't wait. Be ready when the first call is made. You do not have to endure the agony of persecution.
If you are reading this after the first call, take heart. The Holy Spirit will come. Pray for the Holy Spirit unceasingly and God will surely provide. And just like with Elijah, God will provide sustenance, food when you need it, water when you need it. It might not be a feast. It might only be as little as what a bird can bring (remember Elijah being fed by the ravens). God will never abandon you, no matter how you feel. Don't go with feelings. Go with faith! There is hope for you. He will give food, the Holy Spirit and a second call to join Him in Heaven at the second Rapture. Remember, just like feet, we mount up the stairs one foot at a time.
One foot at a time. That's how we climb the steps of a ladder, or go up the stairs. In Genesis 28:12, Jacob has a dream. It is one of the most familiar passages in the Bible and yet many of us have missed its significance.
"He had a dream in which he saw a stairway resting on the earth, with its top reaching to heaven, and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. "
Yes. It is a ladder. In all my life, I never climbed a ladder using two feet at a time. The point is simple and well taken. The two symbolic feet of Christ's body will mount up to Heaven in two stages. There will be two Raptures.
Is this the only example we can look at? No. Look at the Song of Solomon. So many people ignore this book. I don't know why. It is one of the most beautiful books in the Bible. One of the reasons that I delight in reading it is because it gives us a wonderful insight into how God views the Bride of Christ. Please remember that the body, the church, is also the Bride of Christ and is described in those terms in a number of different passages.
In the Song of Solomon (chapter 2, verse 10) the inspired word of God says, "My beloved speaks to me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away..." At the Rapture, God will call us to rise up! A few verses later (verse 14), the Amplified Bible says, "So I went with him, and when we were climbing the rocky steps..." There it is again! Steps. Steps which we can only climb up one foot at a time.
It would be easy at this point to digress. There is a great deal more that could be made out of the foreshadowing in the Song of Solomon. However, the point I would most like to bring out, regards the specific reference this book makes about the feet. Please notice the beautiful descriptions attributed to each part of the body. We see how God feels about each and every part. The feet are described as being beautiful (chapter 7, verse 1). God truly loves us! To Him, we are beautiful despite all our faults. Despite all we have ever done, God finds beauty in us.
Do I Have any Other Proof?
Up to this point, if you only believe there is one rapture and that it occurs before the tribulation, then how do you reconcile your belief with Genesis 18:22-33? Read this passage directly from the New International Version.
23 Then Abraham approached him and said: "Will you sweep away the righteous with the wicked? 24 What if there are fifty righteous people in the city? Will you really sweep it away and not spare the place for the sake of the fifty righteous people in it? 25 Far be it from you to do such a thing--to kill the righteous with the wicked, treating the righteous and the wicked alike. Far be it from you! Will not the Judge of all the earth do right?" 26 The Lord said, "If I find fifty righteous people in the city of Sodom, I will spare the whole place for their sake." 27 Then Abraham spoke up again: "Now that I have been so bold as to speak to the Lord, though I am nothing but dust and ashes, 28 what if the number of the righteous is five less than fifty? Will you destroy the whole city because of five people?" "If I find forty-five there," he said, "I will not destroy it." 29 Once again he spoke to him, "What if only forty are found there?" He said, "For the sake of forty, I will not do it." 30 Then he said, "May the Lord not be angry, but let me speak. What if only thirty can be found there?" He answered, "I will not do it if I find thirty there." 31 Abraham said, "Now that I have been so bold as to speak to the Lord, what if only twenty can be found there?" He said, "For the sake of twenty, I will not destroy it." 32 Then he said, "May the Lord not be angry, but let me speak just once more. What if only ten can be found there?" He answered, "For the sake of ten, I will not destroy it." 33 When the Lord had finished speaking with Abraham, he left, and Abraham returned home.
If God won't even destroy a city such as wicked Sodom, how can you accept an unchangeable God destroying the world unless you accept that no one will get saved after the rapture of the Bride? I contend that people will get saved. They will endure persecution and death. They will be caught up to Heaven.
I know what you must be thinking. If there are two separate Raptures, then when will they occur? I truly don't know. I believe we are in the final days. I believe the Christians of end time church are the feet of Christ's body and have a short time left. In the Song of Solomon and elsewhere in the Bible, it may suggest that the first Rapture will take place in the spring. As for the second Rapture, look at Revelation 2:10. Once again, I will quote from the Amplified Bible:
"Fear nothing that you are about to suffer. Dismiss your dread and your fears! Behold, the devil is indeed about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested and proven and critically appraised; and for ten days you will have affliction. Be loyally faithful unto death - (that is) even if you must die for it - and I will give you the crown of life."
My guess is that the second rapture occurs when the two witnesses are taken up in the book of Revelation. At the midway point of tribulation? I suppose.
I can only conclude that it is far better to be a participant in the first rapture. God doesn't want us to endure the coming persecution. He gives us a way out! We just have to be ready. Remember those virgins who were waiting for the bridegroom to come? Some were ready and some foolishly were not. I urge you to pray. Pray that the Holy Spirit will come fully and completely to live in you. Be filled with His presence. Accept not only God's salvation and accept Him as Lord of your life. Do it now. Please do not wait.
Finally, let me address why I think that very few people have caught on to the Two Rapture Theory. I think it's the same reason that there was confusion in Jesus' day when people missed the fact that the Messiah would have to come twice. The prophecies would often show the first and second coming in the same context. Passages that relate to the two raptures are perceived by readers as being all about one and the same event.
Do I believe that there are two rapture events? Yes, until I am confronted with compelling evidence that would lead me to believe otherwise. In the end, what matters most is that Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior.
May God be with you and may He give us all faith, hope, peace, humility, understanding and love.
Post script: 9-15-08: Two Feet of the Body of Christ
Draw two stick figures on a sheet of paper. The first one will represent the statue in Daniel's vision. Label the head Babylon. The arms and shoulders will be the Medes and Persians. The torso is Greece. The legs are the eastern and western Roman empire. Lastly the feet are the end-time empire. Now start labeling the second figure with Christ as the head. The arms and shoulders are Ephesus and Smyrna. The torso is Pergamos. The legs are Thyatira and Sardis. The end-time church is represented by Philadelphia and Laodicea. Many have erroniously labeled all of the end-time church as Laodicea because it is mentioned last in Revelations. However Laodicea best describes the state of the end-time church in Europe and parts of America. Certainly the church in China, Africa and elsewhere is best described as Philadelphia!!! The two feet of the body of Christ truly is the end-time church.
Parallels in the 400s
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