There are some 800 secret societies or lodges in our country. About half of our adult population, including mostly all of our prominent and influential people such as judges, lawyers, business men, industrialists, politicians, etc. belong to them. Even so-called ministers join these organizations. Men join these lodges for the sake of advancement in politics and business, of prestige, for position in society, and for help in old age and in financial distress. Lodges also try to show the way to eternal life, without Christ, to its members by doing their so-called good works.
Freemasonry is the oldest, largest, most influential and the parent of all the other secret organizations. It has its members in every part of the civilized world. Therefore, I will limit myself to the Masonic lodge. When you talk of Freemasonry you talk of lodges in general.
Freemasonry is composed of 33 degrees. The first three degrees, called the Blue Lodge, is the foundation of Symbolic Masonry. All Masons, whoever they be, must pass through these degrees. Next comes a separation. Jews, Gentiles, and Mohammedans follow the Scottish Bite, consisting of the degrees four to thirty-two. There is also the York Bite, consisting of the degrees four to thirteen which Christians (! ?) follow. After going as far as possible in either Bite, one is eligible for the thirty-third degree, called the Mystic Shrine, which expressed in true terms is, “From the Cross to Mohammed.”
The full name of Masonry is “Ancient and Accepted Free Masonry”. The “Ancient” in this name has reference to the allegation of Masonry that this order had its inception in the very distant past. I will say more about this later on. The term “Accepted”, is a simple statement that the candidate joining the lodge accepts it as it is, although he knows nothing about it at the time. The term “Free”, means that one joins of his own free will, which is true of the first degree only. All succeeding degrees thereafter are mandatory.
The history of Freemasonry dates back from no earlier than 1717 A.D. according to reliable sources. However, Masons try to claim that Noah, Enoch, John the Baptist, the Apostle John, and other saints were members of that lodge. The Blue Lodge is supposed to have been begun with the murder of Hiram Abiff, servant to King Solomon, who was in possession of the plans of the temple building. Highwaymen seek to obtain from him the secret of the building. Upon refusing to give this, he is killed. Thus the building is still incomplete because the laborers have no plans to work from. Anyone who knows the Scriptures will see that this is a big, wicked lie. If there was such a lodge at that time, it surely would have been mentioned in Holy Writ, especially if: men like Solomon, Noah, or John the Baptist belonged to it. I will say once more that it is nothing more than a big hoax to deceive the simple. The degree of the Mystic Shrine ((33rd degree) was established at Mecca, Arabia and later received and instituted at Cairo, Egypt, with the purpose of promoting, organizing, and perfecting of the Arabian and Egyptian Inquisition in order to dispense with justice and execute punishment upon criminals. In the early part of the 18th century it was brought to the United States and placed in the hands of the Masons.
Repeatedly one hears about the boasted benevolence of the Masonic Lodge. They do have homes for their aged, orphanages for their parentless children, and they do give financial aid to their distressed members. But who are the recipients of these benefits? Only those Masons who keep their exorbitant dues paid up well in advance and who are in good standing with the lodge. In other words the benevolence of the lodge is simply returning a part of the great amount paid in dues and fees. It is just like a large insurance company. This is quite a contrast to the teaching of Jesus in Luke 14:12-14, Matt, 18:1-6, Luke 18:9-14.
Just who are eligible for membership in the Masonic Lodge? Only those who
have a good income and a sound, healthy body and mind. In other words, the lodge does not receive minors, the aged, the poor, the lame, the blind, the physically handicapped, or the mentally ill. And lodges are supposed to show the way to eternal life! Quite a contrast from the teaching of Christ, who receives us poor, miserable sinners. Not so with Masonry because it only depends on how good you are and what you can do for ITS members. All members are sworn by the bloodiest of oaths, which I hope to discuss in a future article, to show partiality to fellow members of the order and to favor them above everybody else, even above fellow Christians, in business and politics, and to deliver one another from trouble whether he be right or wrong.
Masonry dotes on bombast and hypocrisy. Often a group of Masons attend some modernistic church as a body. On the Saturday preceding, this church attendance is always broadcasted in the daily papers. At least this is done in the city of Grand Rapids. Also consider the parades of the Masons with all its trumpery; their gaudy uniforms, their plumed hats, scarlet sashes, tin swords and white gloves.—Reminds me of children dressed in Indian or cowboy suits or in Halloween costumes. See a procession of lodge members, many of them strutting about the main street of any metropolis as proud as game cocks in all their finery and expensive jewelry. Certainly it reminds one of the Scribes and Pharisees of which Jesus said, “But all their work they do to be seen of men, for they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments and love the chief place at feasts and the chief seats in the synagogues and the salutations in the marketplaces and to be called of men, Rabbi.” Matt. 23:5-7.