1 Enoch 9:10


7 And Semjâzâ, to whom You gave authority to lead his companions. 8 And they have gone to the daughters of men on the earth, and have lain with the women, and have defiled themselves, and revealed to them all kinds of sins. 9 And the women have borne giants, and the whole earth has been filled with blood and unrighteousness as a result. 10 And now, behold, the souls of those who are dead are crying and pleading to the gates of heaven, and their lamentations have risen: and cannot stop because of the lawless acts that are committed on the earth. 11 And You know all things before they happen, and You see these things and You allow them, and You do not tell us what we should do regarding them.'

Revelation 6:9

New Testament

7 Then when the Lamb opened the fourth seal I heard the voice of the fourth living creature saying, “Come!” 8 So I looked and here came a pale green horse! The name of the one who rode it was Death, and Hades followed right behind. They were given authority over a fourth of the earth, to kill its population with the sword, famine, and disease, and by the wild animals of the earth. 9 Now when the Lamb opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been violently killed because of the word of God and because of the testimony they had given. 10 They cried out with a loud voice, “How long, Sovereign Master, holy and true, before you judge those who live on the earth and avenge our blood?” 11 Each of them was given a long white robe, and they were told to rest for a little longer, until the full number was reached of both their fellow servants and their brothers who were going to be killed just as they had been.

 Notes and References

"... Early intimations of the theme of the sacrifice of righteous souls upon the Temple altar may be found in the New Testament book of Revelation (6: 9–10), where the slaughtered Lamb opens the fifth of seven seals on the heavenly scroll ... Written during the period immediately after the destruction of the Second Temple, this passage makes use of the apocalyptic motif of souls entering a plea and demanding justice, but it is concerned specifically with those individuals who have been ‘slaughtered for the word of God’; it is these that the Lamb finds under the altar ... Although the New Testament passage states that God will wait until enough martyrs have been slain, it does not suggest that these souls are being actively sacrificed on a heavenly altar, as portrayed in the ‘Tale of the Ten Martyrs’. Moreover, here it is not for the purposes of expiation or atonement for Israel that the souls entreat God; rather, as in the early apocalyptic texts, they seek justice and demand that their murder be avenged. (See 1 Enoch 9:10 and 22:12) ..."

Mandel, Paul The Sacrifice of the Souls of the Righteous upon the Heavenly Altar: Transformations of Apocalyptic Traditions in Medieval Ashkenaz (pp. 49-72) Liverpool University Press, 2018

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