392. The souls of them that were slain for the Word of God, and for the testimony which they held. That this signifies those who were rejected and hidden on account of the Divine truth, and their confession of the Lord, is plain from the signification of the slain, as denoting such as are rejected by the evil, and concealed by the Lord, of whom we shall treat presently; and from the signification of the Word of God, as denoting the Divine truth. What the Lord speaks is called the Word of God, and this is Divine truth. The Word or Sacred Scripture is nothing else; for all Divine truth is contained therein, but the truth itself does not there appear in its glory except before the angels, because the interior things of the Word, which are spiritual and celestial, come within their perception, and also constitute their wisdom. Therefore by the Word of God, in the genuine sense, is signified Divine truth, and in the highest sense, the Lord Himself, who spoke it, for He spoke from Himself, or from His Divine, and what proceeds from Him is also Himself.
 That the Divine proceeding is Himself, may be illustrated by this circumstance. Around every angel there is a sphere called the sphere of his life; this puts itself forth to a great distance from him. This sphere flows out, or proceeds from the life of his affection or love, therefore it is an extension of the life, such as it is in him, outside of him. This extension is effected in the middle atmosphere or spiritual aura, which is the aura of heaven. By that sphere an angel is perceived at a distance by others according to the quality of his affection; this it has also been granted me sometimes to perceive. But about the Lord there is a Divine sphere, which near Him appears as a Sun, which is His Divine love, from which that sphere proceeds into the whole heaven and fills it, and constitutes the light there; this sphere is the Divine proceeding from the Lord, which in its essence is Divine truth. A comparison is here made with the angels for the sake of illustration, in order that it may be known that the Divine proceeding from the Lord is the Lord Himself, because it is the proceeding of His love, and the proceeding is Himself outside of Himself; and from the signification of testimony, as denoting confession of the Lord, and the Lord Himself, of which we shall speak presently.
 That by the slain are here meant those who were rejected by wicked spirits, and concealed by the Lord, or removed from the eyes of others, and reserved to the day of the Last Judgment, is evident from what was said in the article above, and also from what follows in the two verses that treat solely of them. In the article above it was observed, that the former heaven which passed away, consisted of those who lived morally in externals, but yet were not spiritual, but merely natural, or who lived as it were a spiritual life, only from the affection or love of fame, honour, glory, and gain, thus for the sake of appearance. These, although they were inwardly evil, were still tolerated, and constituted societies in the higher places in the spiritual world; these societies, taken together, were called heaven, but the former heaven which afterwards passed away. Hence it came to pass, that all those who were spiritual, that is, who were not only outwardly but also inwardly good, could not be together with such, but withdrew from them, either of their own accord or from compulsion, and were subjected, where found, to persecutions; therefore they were concealed by the Lord, and reserved in their places to the day of Judgment, in order that they might constitute a new heaven; these, therefore, are those who are meant by the souls of the slain seen under the altar. Hence it is evident that by the slain are signified those who were rejected and hidden, for they were hated by the others on account of Divine truth and the confession of the Lord; and those who are hated are called the slain, for to hate is spiritually to kill. That they are meant by the souls of the slain, is evident also from what follows in the two verses where it is thus said concerning them:
"And they cried with a great voice, saying, How long, O Lord, who art holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenue our blood on them that dwell on the earth? And white robes were given unto every one; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet a little time, until both their fellow-servants and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled."
That those here spoken of are meant by the slain, no one can know except he to whom it has been revealed; for who, except from revelation, could know of whom the former heaven, mentioned in the Apocalypse 21:1, consisted, and of whom the new heaven was formed; and that those of whom the new heaven was to be formed, were in the meantime concealed and reserved by the Lord? And unless these things had been revealed to some one, all the things contained in the Apocalypse in the internal sense must have remained hidden, because they principally treat of such things as were to take place in the spiritual world before the Last Judgment, also of those things that occurred during it, and after it.
 That by testimony is signified confession of the Lord, and the Lord Himself, is evident from the passages in the Word which follow. This signification thus derives its origin because the Word, in all things in general and particular, testifies concerning the Lord; for, in its inmost sense, it treats of the Lord alone, and in the internal sense, of the celestial and spiritual things that proceed from the Lord, and in the particular sense the Lord testifies concerning Himself with every one who is in the life of love and charity. For the Lord flows into the heart and life of such, and teaches them, especially concerning His Divine Human, for He gives to those who are in a life of love, to think of God under a human form, and God under a human form is the Lord. Thus do the simple think in the Christian world; and thus also do the Gentiles think, who live in charity according to their religious persuasion. Both of these are astonished when they hear the learned speak of God as not to be perceived under any human form, knowing that, in such case, they would see no God in their thought, and hence that they would have but little faith in the existence of a God, because the faith which is a faith of charity desires to comprehend in some way what is believed, for faith pertains to the thought, and to think what is incomprehensible is not to think, but only to know and thence to speak without any idea. The angels, even the wisest, do not think of God except as in the human form. To think otherwise is impossible to them, because their perceptions flow according to the form of heaven, which is the human form from the Lord's Divine Human (on which subject see the work concerning Heaven and Hell 59-86); also because the affections from which their thoughts come are from influx, and influx is from the Lord. These observations are made, in order that it may be known why it is that testimony signifies the Lord, namely, because the Lord testifies concerning Himself with all who receive His testification, and they are such as live a life of love to the Lord, and a life of charity towards the neighbour. The reason why these receive the testification and confess Him, is, that the life of love and charity opens the interior mind by the influx of light from heaven; for the life of love and charity is the Divine Life itself, for the Lord loves every one, and does good to every one from love; therefore, where that life is received, there the Lord is present, and is conjoined to him, consequently, He flows into his higher mind, which is called the spiritual mind, and by light from Himself opens it.
 That testimony signifies the Lord, and with man confession of the Lord from the heart, and specifically the acknowledgment of the Lord's Divine in His Human, is evident from this fact, that the law which was prescribed on Mount Sinai, and written upon two tables, and afterwards deposited in the ark, is called the Testimony; whence the ark also was called the ark of the testimony, and the tables also were called the tables of the testimony. And because this was most holy, therefore, the mercy-seat was placed over the ark, and over the mercy-seat were sculptured two cherubim, between which Jehovah, that is, the Lord, spoke with Moses and Aaron. Hence it is clear that the testimony signifies the Lord Himself; otherwise the mercy-seat would not have been placed over the ark, nor would the Lord have spoken with Moses and Aaron between the cherubim which was over the mercy-seat. When Aaron also entered within the veil, which he did once every year, he was first sanctified, and afterwards he burnt incense till the smoke of it covered the mercy-seat, which unless he had done, it is said that he would have died. From these things it plainly appears, that the testimony which was in the ark, and which was the law promulgated on Mount Sinai, and written on two tables of stone, signified the Lord Himself.
 That that law is called the testimony, is plain in Moses:
"Thou shalt put into the ark the testimony which I shall give thee" (Exodus 25:16).
"He put the testimony into the ark" (Exodus 40:20).
"The mercy-seat that is upon the testimony" (Leviticus 16:13).
"Leave the rods of the tribes before the testimony" (Num. 17:4).
That the tables and the ark were thence called the tables and the ark "of the testimony" (Exodus 25:22; 31:7, 18; 32:15). That the mercy-seat was placed over it, and over the mercy-seat two sculptured cherubim (Exodus 25:17-23; 26:34). That the Lord spoke with Moses and with Aaron between the two cherubim (Exodus 25:16, 21, 22; Num. 17; 19, and elsewhere). That they sanctified themselves before they entered thither, and that the smoke of the incense covered the mercy-seat lest they should die (Leviticus xvi.).
Exodus 25:17-22, 25:21-22; Leviticus 16)
 That the testimony signifies the Lord, is also plain from this fact, that what was over the ark was called the mercy-seat; and the Lord is the Propitiator. The ark also, from the testimony in it, was the Holy of Holies, both in the tabernacle and in the temple, and hence the tabernacle was holy, and also the temple. The tabernacle and also the temple, represented heaven, and heaven is heaven from the Lord's Divine Human; whence it follows that by the testimony is signified the Lord as to His Divine Human. (That the tent of assembly represented heaven, may be seen, n. 9457, 9481, 9485, 10545. That the temple signified the same, may be seen above, n. 220; and that heaven is heaven from the Lord's Divine Human, in the work concerning Heaven and Hell 59-86.) The reason why the law promulgated from mount Sinai is called the testimony, is because that law, in a broad sense, signifies the whole Word, both historical and prophetical; and the Word is the Lord, according to these words in John:
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God; and the Word was made flesh" (1:1, 14).
The reason why the Word is the Lord is, that the Word signifies Divine truth, and all Divine truth proceeds from the Lord, for it is the light which in heaven enlightens the minds of the angels and also the minds of men, and gives them wisdom; this light in its essence is the Divine truth proceeding from the Lord as a Sun concerning which light see the work on Heaven and Hell 126-140). Hence it is that, after it is said that the Word was with God, and the Word was God, it is also said in John:
"In him was life; and the life was the light of men. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world" (verses 4, 9, in that chapter).
John 1:4, 1:9; The Apocalypse Explained 220)
 From these things it is also evident that the Lord is meant by the testimony; for the law written on two tables, which was called the testimony, signifies the Word in its whole extent, and the Lord is the Word. That the law, in a broad sense, signifies the Word in its whole extent, in a sense less broad the historical Word, and in a strict sense the ten precepts of the Decalogue, may be seen, n. 6762. This law was also called a covenant, and hence the tables on which it was written, were called the tables of the covenant, and the ark also was called the ark of the covenant (see Exodus 34:28; Num. 14:44; Deuteronomy 9:9, 15; Apoc. 11:19, and elsewhere); the reason of this was, that a covenant signifies conjunction, and the Word, or the Divine truth, is that which conjoins man with the Lord, otherwise no conjunction is possible. That a covenant signifies conjunction, may be seen, n. 665, 666, 1023, 1038, 1864, 1996, 2003, 2021, 6864, 8767, 8778, 9396, 10632. The reason why that law is called both a covenant and a testimony, is, because when it is called a covenant, the Word is meant, by means of which there is conjunction; and when it is called a testimony, the Lord Himself who conjoins is meant; also on the part of man, confession of the Lord, and acknowledgment of His Divine in His Human, which conjoin. From these things it can be seen why it is that, in the church, the Word is called a covenant; the Word which was before the Lord's Advent, the old covenant, and that which was after His Advent, the new covenant; it is called also the Old and New Testament, but it should be called Testimony.
Arcana Coelestia 665-666, 6752, 6804)
 That by testimony is signified the Lord, and, on the part of man, confession of the Lord, and acknowledgment of His Divine in His Human, is plain also from these passages in the Word. In the Apocalypse:
"They overcame" the dragon "by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of the testimony. And the wrathful dragon went to make war with the remnant of her seed, who keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ" (12:11, 17).
"I am thy fellow-servant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus. The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy" (19:10).
By the testimony of Jesus being the spirit of prophecy is signified, that confession of the Lord, and the acknowledgment of His Divine in His Human, are the life of all truth, both in the Word, and in doctrine from the Word.
 And in another place:
"The souls of them that were slain with the axe for the testimony of Jesus, and for the word of God, have not received the mark upon their forehead and upon their hand" (20:4).
But this will be explained in what follows.
"Jerusalem is builded as a city that is compact together and thither the tribes go up, the tribes of Jah, unto the testimony of Israel, to confess the name of Jehovah. For there the thrones for judgment are set" (Psalms 122:3-5).
By Jerusalem is signified the church as to doctrine, which is called builded, when established by the Lord; "as a city that is compact together," signifies doctrine in which all things are in order, a city denoting doctrine. Thither the tribes go up, the tribes of Jah, signifies that therein are all truths and goods in the aggregate. Unto the testimony of Israel, to confess the name of Jehovah, signifies confession and acknowledgment of the Lord there; for there the thrones for judgment are set, signifies that there is Divine truth according to which judgment is executed. That thrones signify this, see above, n. 253.
The Apocalypse Explained 253)
 In the same:
"Jehovah hath set up a testimony in Jacob, and a law in Israel" (Psalms 78:5).
By Jacob and Israel is signified the church; by Jacob the external church, and by Israel the internal church; and by the testimony and the law is signified the Word; by the testimony that which therein teaches the goods of life; and by the law that which therein teaches the truths of doctrine. Because those who are in the external church are in the good of life according to the truths of doctrine, and those who are in the internal church are in the truths of doctrine according to which the life [is formed], therefore, the testimony is said of Jacob; and the law, of Israel.
 In the same:
"If thy sons will keep my covenant, and the testimony that I shall teach them, thy sons shall also sit upon thy throne for evermore" (Psalms 132:12).
These things are said of David, but by David is there meant the Lord; by his sons are meant those who do the Lord's precepts; of them it is said: "If thy sons will keep my covenant" and My testimony; by covenant the same is meant as above by the law, namely, the truth of doctrine; and by testimony the same as above by testimony, namely, the good of life according to the truths of doctrine. Similar things are signified by covenant and testimonies in David (Psalms 25:10).
 Testimonies are mentioned in many passages in the Word and at the same time the law, precepts, commandments, statutes, and judgments; and by testimonies and commandments are there signified those things that teach life; by the law and precepts, those that teach doctrine; by statutes and judgments, those that teach rituals; as in the following passages in David:
"The law of Jehovah is perfect, recreating the soul; the testimony of Jehovah is sure, making wise the simple; the commandments of Jehovah are right, rejoicing the heart; the precept of Jehovah is pure, enlightening the eyes; the judgments of Jehovah are the truth, they are altogether just" (Psalms 14:7).
And in the same:
"Blessed are the sincere in the way, who walk in the law of Jehovah. Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart. Thou hast taught thy commandments to be strictly kept. O that my ways were directed to keep thy statutes! Then shall I not be ashamed, when I have respect unto all thy precepts. I will confess to thee with uprightness of heart, when I shall have learned the judgments of thy justice" (119:1-7; similarly in verses 12-15, 88, 89, 151-156; and elsewhere).
Psalms 19:7-9, 119:12-15, 119:88-89, 119:151-157, 119:151-156; Revelation 6:10-11)