FROM THEIR OWN AUTHORITIES
In this discussion of Freemasonry it is important to establish at the outset that under no circumstances should the comments in this treatise be deemed in any way to be an attack upon the character or integrity of the vast majority of those men who belong to the Masonic Lodge or those women who belong to its sister organization, the Order of the Eastern Star. Rather, the focus of this discussion is centered upon the actual teachings of the Masonic Order. Note carefully what I have just said, "the actual teachings of the Masonic order," not what the average member of the "local" Lodge "thinks" is taught, but what the official documents and manuals (most of which are never read by the average initiate) specifically set forth. Rather than be accused of inserting my own thoughts or possible prejudices into this part of our discussion, allow me instead to merely list a rather long series of quotes which have been taken from the writings of such authoritative Masonic scholars as Albert Pike, J.D. Buck, W.L. Wilmshurst, T.M. Stewart, George H. Steinmetz and Dean N Goranson. Bare in mind that these men are or were loyal, active and dedicated Masons at the time of their writing. Not one quote is taken from someone who quite the Lodge, or may be considered as having an axe to grind with Freemasonry. Nor are these men mere First Degree initiates who do not know what they are talking about.
As I said earlier, these quotes are taken from official Masonic publications or officially endorsed histories. It should also be noted that it is not the purpose of this treatise to expose some of the deep secret meanings of the symbols and rituals of the Masonic Order, as that would be the subject of a rather lengthy book in and of itself. The quotes which follow are taken from books which are available through the public library, and deal primarily with the question, "What is the goal which an informed Freemason strives to attain, and from what source does he derive the information needed to attain that goal?" The issue before us at this time is really quite basic. Do the more publicly acknowledged teachings, beliefs and concepts of the Masonic Order really line up with the teachings of Jesus Christ as contained in the Bible in its present form? The quotations presented are not taken out of context.
If you doubt this statement you can check out each of the books listed for yourself. These quotes are however, arranged in an orderly fashion so as to present an even flow of ideas. Any words I have added are in parenthesis, and are done so merely to show the connection between quotes and ideas. Each quote is footnoted with a complete bibliography presented at the end of this paper. With these preliminaries completed, allow me to now proceed with the publicly acknowledged true beliefs and teachings of the fraternity of Freemasonry.
2) In Pike's Legenda 40 to 140 Scottish Rite, he states: In the United States the Blue Degrees teach morality only (they) refuse to inter-meddle with questions political or religious...
3) If he (the initiate) fails to do so (seek the real meaning of symbols) he still remains --- and the system deliberately intends that he should --- in the dark about the Order's real meaning and secrets, although formally a member of it.
4) (In) the Blue Degrees ... Part of the symbols are displayed ... to the initiate, but he is intentionally misled by false interpretations. It is not intended that he shall understand them, but it is intended that he shall imagine he understands them.
5) Most of the truly great Masonic writers have deplored the lack of esoteric Masonic knowledge among the craft in general. Mackey speaks of the Parrot Mason... Parrot Mason because he repeats what he has learned without any conception of its true meaning.
6) Until one seeks and finds a deeper meaning and applies it spiritually Masonry is not a religion. It becomes religion only to him who finds religion in it, to others it remains but ritual, and at best a system of morals.
7) Religion is the recognition of men's relation to a divine superhuman power to whom obedience and reverence are due.
8) The time has arrived for Masonry to make its position clear, to not only admit, but to declare that it is a religion.
9) (T)he great Masonic scholars of the past... all show their recognition of the religion in Masonry.
10) (A)ll Freemasons necessarily profess a belief in a one living and true God...
11) Masonry propagates no creed except its own simple and sublime one taught by nature and reason ... The permanent one, universal revelation is written in visible nature... There is but one religion, one legitimate belief.
12) God, infinite, is in all, through all, and is all. This is the God in whom the Mason places his trust.
13) (To the Mason this deity is the) Great Universal Mind ... the Grand Architect of the Universe...
14) The objective mind of man is the manifestation of the Universal Mind, which is subjective.
15) Mental Science informs us that this subjective mind is the individual's undivided part of the great subjective mind of the universe, that creative force which brought us into being and therefore we are like our creator.
16) Man, being created in the image of God, possesses within himself the potential possibilities of infinite progress and evolution.
17) It is well for a man to be born in a church but terrible for him to die in one, for in religion there must be growth. A young man is to be censured who fails to attend the church of his nation: the elderly is equally to be censured if he does attend... he ought to have outgrown what that church offers and to have attained a higher order of religious life.
18) (Man can) attain even higher levels than he has already reached by the attainment of mastership.
19) First a mollusk, then a fish, then a bird, then a mammal, then a man, then a master, then a God.
20) What our ancient brethren in the Greater Mysteries called the immortal Gods, were simply perfected by this normal human evolution.
21) ...(A)ncient secret doctrine, which is concealed in Masonic allegory and symbolism teaches evolution ...Reincarnation ... (and) Karma which are included in, and are part of the teaching of scientific astrology. Neither should the Christian Mason shudder on being told Masonry embraces such teaching. If he feels any repugnance at the thought, it is because those who today profess those teachings ...have distorted these Divine truths as greatly as Christianity has the sublime teaching of the master Jesus. There is no new religion. There is but One Religion. The Ancient Hebrews believed in evolution, reincarnation and Karma as well as astrology. The book we call the Holy Bible is still full of references to all three, in spite of the fact that much has been expurgated. Had it not suited the purpose of the Roman Church centuries ago to disregard that portion of the teaching of the Bible, the Christian religion today would doubtless teach these fundamentals... It was but to preserve these truths for future generation that Masonry itself was perpetuated.
22) Christianity has failed to redeem the world. Christianity has failed that is not because it is false, but because it has been falsified.
23) Through its careful and secret teaching Freemasonry has preserved knowledge of mental science through the dark age of ignorance... The knowledge is ALL THERE but it is still veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols, and is useless until laboriously dug out and exposed to the view of the intellect.
24) ...the little information we have of the mysteries has come down to us, coupled with veiled remarks of known initiates such as Jesus, St. Paul, Plato and Pythagoras.
25) Masonry, says Albert Pike, in Morals and Dogma is the descendent of that higher science held by the ancient teachers of those ancient religions that once illuminated the minds of men. Considering the fact, that these ancient faiths taught a secret faith as well as open doctrine... we come to the mysteries handed down from generation to generation, in secret tradition given to those ready to receive and to properly impart them... The gnostics derived their leading doctrine and ideas from Plato and Philo the Zendavesta of the Persians, the Kabalah of the Hebrews and the sacred books of Egypt and India...
26) ...Freemasonry, the workshop of pure Gnosticism took up a stand against the Christian Church, the workshop of falsified and corrupted Gnosticism.
27) The Secrecy of the institution is another and most important landmark... If divested of its secret character it would lose its identity and would cease to be Freemasonry... Such change of its character would be social suicide, and the death of the Order would follow its legalized exposure. Freemasonry as a secret association has lived unchanged for centuries --- as an open society it would not last for as many years.
28) Masonry contains within its teaching the whole purpose of man's existence and the method of attaining the end of creative spirit in personalizing itself through man.
29) ...(C)ertain attributes and virtues of a divinely latent nature are deeply imbedded and locked up within the heart of every man... (O)nce discovered... that man instinctively and intuitively aligns himself with God... (A)ll things are of a divine nature and ...Freemasonry with its symbolic instruction points the pathway to eternal life.
30) The secret the Master Mason is striving to learn is to attain spiritual life before experiencing physical death.
31) No degree of Freemasonry can give the candidate the "True Word" for none possess it, and if they did they could not communicate it. THAT IS AN IMPOSSIBILITY. The TRUE WORD, by its inherent nature can only be DISCOVERED by the individual himself.
32) ...(I)t is not known if he will every achieve it.
By its own admission, therefore, Masonry teaches the following:
1) Jesus Christ is no more God than Plato or yourself. (see notes #12, 28, 24)
2) Salvation (ie. redemption) is not dependent upon the blood of Jesus, but upon the understanding and application of hidden secrets which can be ascertained only through rigorous study. (see notes # 22, 23, 28)
3) While the Bible may in fact have been inspired by God, the Bible we have today is a corrupted version of what God actually said. It is therefore necessary to supplement what we call the Bible with the mystic teachings of ancient civilizations. When these teachings conflict with the Bible, we must ignore the Bible and go with the Mystics. (see notes # 17, 21, 25, 27)
4) The God of Freemasonry is not the God of Christianity. (see notes # 12, 13, 26)
5) All Churches, regardless of denomination or religion, are useless for attaining the ultimate immortality which is the aim of the Masonic Order. (see notes # 17, 18, 29)
6) Secrecy is absolutely necessary in order for Masonry to continue. If its teachings and doctrines were made known to the general public the order would fall apart. (see note # 27)
7) Intentional misrepresentation (out right lies) are a legitimate part of the process used to determine who is worthy and who is unworthy of attaining the secrets of immortality. (see notes # 3, 4, 6, 25)
8) Man, in and of himself, merely by developing the power which is naturally within all men, is capable of achieving physical immortality. (see notes # 18, 19, 20, 21, 27, 28, 29)
9) Most likely, the search for this status is futile because the Masonic Order isn't really sure if you will ever achieve the goal toward which you are aiming. (see notes # 30, 31, 32)
We are now faced with a very simple question. Given the fact that membership in and financial support of an organization is tantamount to helping that organization spread its teachings, can a Christian who accepts the following:
1) Jesus Christ is God
2) There is no other way to salvation except through Jesus
3) Man by nature is a fallen creature and not a God
4) The Bible we have today (all 66 books) is the only written record we have of God's communication with us and there are no other writings which can legitimately claim to be the Divinely inspired Word of God.
- can such a believing Christian become or remain a member of the Masonic Lodge?
Please do not beg the issue by raising red herrings such as "Many ministers belong to the Masonic Lodge." Those ministers may be as ignorant as the average member of the points we have just discussed. Those ministers may not accept the deity of Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, or the Father, or the divine inspiration of the Bible - in which case they are no more of a Christian than the 33 degree Mason, Albert Pike.
Please do not beg the issue by raising red herrings such as "The Masonic Lodge gives so much money to charities, and is itself a charitable organization." Much of the money given by individual members actually ends up being used by the Lodge for its own internal operation, but is still considered a charitable contribution because the organization itself is listed as charitable with the IRS. Furthermore, does the fact that the former Soviet Union gave aid to under developed nations excuse it for the atrocities it committed throughout the world and upon many of its own citizens?
There is one point upon which the previously quoted Masonic scholars and I would agree upon. That is, the Bible, as we have it today most certainly does not support the religious doctrines of Freemasonry. Those doctrines are in direct violation of the Bible's very clear teachings that Jesus Christ and only Jesus Christ is the way to salvation. There can also be no doubt that the Bible does not support the Masonic concept of redemption through progressive knowledge. However, it is not the Bible which has been corrupted, nor Christianity which has been falsified.
I ask you to carefully consider this. The Apostle Paul told the
Epicurean and Stoic philosophers of Athens that salvation is dependent upon
repentance - not knowledge (Acts 17:30-31)! It was satan who tempted Eve
by telling her that she could become like God by partaking of the fruit of
the Tree of Knowledge. The source of Masonic doctrine would therefore, appear
not to be ancient India, Egypt, Greece or Persia. It goes farther back than
that. The doctrine of attaining the status of deity through knowledge originated
with satan. And because Adam and Eve fell victim to it, they discovered death
- not the life they were seeking. I shall pray to the One True God of the
Bible that you do not also fall victim to that same temptation, for like
all those before you who have taken that road and rejected Jesus, that which
awaits you is not physical immortality, but an eternity in hell.
1) George Steinmetz: Freemasonry, Its Hidden Meaning, (p.5)
2) ibid p.4
3) W.L. Wilmshurst: The Masonic Invitation (pp.4-5)
4) Steinmetz: op.cit p.2
5) ibid p.18
6) ibid p.13
7) ibid p.12
8) ibid p.13
9) ibid p.13
10) ibid p.21
11) Albert Pike: The Inner Sanctuary (p.34)
12) Steinmetz: op.cit p.57
13) ibid p.24
14) ibid p.27
15) ibid p.29
16) ibid p.36
17) Wilmshurst: op.cit p.25
18) Steinmetz: op.cit p.37
19) J.D.Buck: The Genius of Freemasonry (p.43)
20) ibid pp.28-29
21) Steinmetz: op.cit p.123
22) T.M.Stewart: Symbolic Teaching (p.187)
23) Steinmetz: op.cit p.30
24) ibid p.132
25) Stewart: op.cit pp.55-56
26) LaMassoneria: (p.14)
27) Lefemme At l Enfant Dans LaFranc - Maconnerie Universelle (p.558) by A.C.De LaRive; from instructions issued by Albert Pike to Supreme Council of the World, July 14 1889
28) Albert Mackey: Landmarks of Freemasonry, as found in the Official Monitor and Ceremonies, 10th Edition 1975; Grand Lodge of AF&AM of New Mexico (pp.121-122)
29) Steinmetz: op.cit p.36
30) Dean N. Goranson: Freemasonry, A Remarkable Technique (p.23)
31) Steinmetz: op.cit p.179
32) ibid p.189
33) ibid p.161