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Seal 5. Martyrs

Revelation 6:9-11 “When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God and the testimony they had maintained. They called out in a loud voice, “How long, Sovereign Lord, holy and true, until you judge the inhabitants of the earth and avenge our blood?” Then each of them were given a white robe, and they were told to wait a little longer, until the number of their fellow servants and brothers who were to be killed as they had been was completed.”

     I saw under the altar the souls

Another not so great translation. The bronze altar in the outer court was quite high with east facing steps leading up 4.5ft (Ex 27:1 - portable), 12ft (Eze 42:13-17), 15ft (2 Chr 4:1) high (with extremes of 30ft, 80ft, 180ft or 220ft sources differ greatly).  The exact height isn’t really important because all but the portable one of Moses had substantial height. The souls are not underneath the altar but at the base/feet of that altar. The slain souls are murdered and want revenge. They are told to wait a little while like in Matthew 22:1-14.  These souls are the silent people of the 7th seal.

avenge our blood

Likely those people were killed for their belief in Christ during the seal 1-4. But I think it’s very well possible they include all Christian martyrs. Likely many ancient Jews too. While they were not Christians it can’t be denied many where (wo)men of God. But that’s all speculation. All that really told they are killed for their belief.

Matt 24:9 Then they will deliver you up to affliction, and kill you; and you will be hated by all nations on my account.

them were given a white robe

The white robes don’t really single out a special group like the bride because all guests at the wedding wore white robes. If not they were removed from the party (Matt 22:11-13). White garments are also related to war.

Rev 19:14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him on white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.

That said there isn’t a conflicting view. On the contrary it even perfectly aligns because Christ’s army will be an army of saints in white robes.

they were told to wait a little longer

The time that Christ’s warriors ride out hasn’t come yet.

Male wedding guests, including the groom, worn a wedding garment called a kittel. It looks a little similar to a bathrobe. The kittel is also worn during Passover and Yom Kippur sacrifices by the priests. Kittel is rooted in the word katal, to slay.