Friday, April 22, 2011

Secret Societies, Broken Hearts

Sometimes my curiosity gets the best of me. Sometimes I have discoveries that I wish I never knew. Sometimes these discoveries make me feel obligated in my responsibilities as a citizen, a father, and most importantly as a Christian.

In my very first post on this Blog I stated the following:

I love people and I never want to offend or hurt anyone. However, understand that I have the potential to do so. I love Jesus, my family, and the Georgia Bulldogs. I am a 42 year old kid and love to play my x-box. If any of these things might offend you in any way, please leave now and know that I'm praying for you. 

 This is very well likely to be one of those posts and I wouldn't be me if I didn't sling it on out there anyway. So here it goes.

I have often wondered with curiosity about fraternal orders, secret societies and of all things hidden in plain sight. Particularly I have wondered about freemasons because they are everywhere. They are in our workplace, our church and even in our families. I have wondered what they were about, what they did, what they believed in and what their "secrets" were. At the same time something in my heart told me to beware. I'm not going to claim to have discovered the whole truth of all they hold private but I have discovered enough to know that it isn't for me. I hope after reading this you'll decide it isn't for you either. If you're reading this and you are a mason I hope it makes you question why. If you're a mason and you don't believe what I say is correct that is fine as well but I would ask that you ask your own brethren. Ask at a higher degree and test it to disprove it.

Before I sling the guts out of this possum let me tell you how I came upon this information. Twitter - a fantastic social media tool where I simply asked "What the heck are masons about exactly?" I got several answers in reply ranging from "parade shriners" to "old man's club". But one answer revealed what I have not been able to find on Google but confirmed much in what I long suspected. It came from someone who I have never met but online encounters lead me to believe it is a Christian source that let me make my own perception. This person posted a link to a website that gave me the ONLY answers I've been looking for. No, I don't believe everything I read but I have all the evidence I need to know what I read is true. Now it's time for the guts.

You cannot be a freemason and a Christian at the same time.( I'm going to come back and re-phrase this later - That's pretty harsh)

I cannot confirm what is stated on this website is true for all fraternal orders of free masons or any for that matter. However I have has mason current and removed, confirm parts are correct.
I'm going to quote some of what I read on the website:
Question: "What is Free Masonry and what do Free Masons believe?"

Freemasonry, Eastern Star, and other similar "secret" organizations appear to be harmless fellowship gatherings. Many of them appear to promote belief in God. However, upon closer examination, we find that the only belief requirement is not that one must believe in the True and Living God, but rather, that one must believe in the existence of a “Supreme Being”, which includes the “gods” of Islam, Hinduism, or any other world religion. The unbiblical and anti-Christian beliefs and practices of this organization are partially hidden beneath an outward appearance of a supposed compatibility with the Christian faith.

Salvation from Sin:

The Bible’s View: Jesus became the sinner’s sacrifice before God when He shed His blood and died as the propitiation (payment) for the sins of all those who would ever believe (Ephesians 2:8-9, Romans 5:8, John 3:16).

Mason’s View: The very process of joining the Lodge requires Christians to ignore the exclusivity of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. According to Freemasonry, a person will be saved and go to heaven as a result of his good works and personal self-improvement.

MOST importantly I read this: 
Mason’s View: There is no exclusivity in Jesus Christ or the Triune God who is the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; therefore there is no doctrine of the deity of Jesus Christ. It is deemed to be un-Masonic to invoke the name of Jesus when praying, or mention His name in the Lodge. Suggesting that Jesus is the only way to God contradicts the principle of tolerance. The name of Jesus has been omitted from biblical verses that are used in Masonic rituals. Jesus is on the same level as other religious leaders.

This is where some of you reading this are thinking "you can't believe everything you read" and this is true in many cases but you can believe everything you read in the Bible without question. This is tough to swallow when we have friends and family that are masons. Still, I believe much of this to be true. 

As far as what I read on this website I offer this as confirmation that some of what is stated may be true:
When I read this I immediately remembered an old friend who revealed many years ago he was a mason when I asked him what the symbol on his ring was. It was the event that started my curiosity years ago. That friend today is a pastor in a Christian church. I immediately thought "how could this be possible?".

I didn't hesitate to text him and here is EXACTLY the conversation we had.

Me: This is Vic - I have a question. Are you still affiliated with the free masons?

Him: No my luv for the Lord will not allow me to.

Me: Praise Jesus! I just read what they teach and it broke my heart.

Moments later he called me and told me to stay away from that. He said he didn't know what he was getting into years ago and when he got saved he found out the truth. He said to tell anybody thinking about it to stay away. He said he would call me later to discuss it further. I look forward to that call this evening. That folks is all the confirmation I need to validate what I read on that website. 

I also suspect they support not only a unified god but a unified world government as well. A true sign of the end of times straight out of Revelations. However it will take a mason to confirm that. (not happening)

I remain deeply troubled by this because I have numerous friends and even family that is affiliated with the free masons. Some of them may be reading this now taking great offense to it.  Let me be clear that I think Masons are good people doing good deeds. But scripture is clear in Christianity that good deeds don't get you to Heaven. I have no ill will to the free mason, only love. They need saving too!

After posting this if anything should happen to me, my family or the Georgia Bulldogs I ask that you look for blood on the rings of freemasons. Maybe I've seen to many movies about secret societies.

In Christ - 

Same day 6:21 PM 

I have indeed ruffled feathers and have had a few contacts, some phone calls from friends and loved ones. In all cases every mason was a gentleman and presented themselves in a respectful manner. Some were however more upset than others. Those closest to me seemingly were hurt the most. I do regret hurting anyone.  I don't regret stating my Christian values.  Therein is my conflict with this whole matter. 

First let me re-phrase what  I stated above in a more respectful manner:
"You cannot be a freemason and a Christian at the same time."

I should have said that there is conflict in being a freemason and a Christian at the same time. Offended by this statement or not I do believe that to be true.

Out of the current or ex-masons I spoke with I got an array or reactions and replies. One current lodge member confirmed it is forbidden to refer to Jesus in prayer. One stated it isn't even about what religion you are.  Another said most of what the website said was garbage and that free masonry is full of Christians who openly speak of Jesus in prayer . This fellow also acknowledged you can pray to any other deity you wish to pray to openly. I was informed that they believe that Jesus is indeed the son of God yet denied Jesus is Lord(God) I asked a couple to provide me with correct documentation of what exactly their belief is and they could not because is is sacred and secret. There is nothing sacred and Secret in being a Christian and that is why I believe there is a conflict.

What is it to be Christian? It is to follow the teachings of Christ, to be Christ-like, to be a disciple and to SHOUT it from the mountain tops and to the ENDS OF THE EARTH! That is hard to do in a secret fraternal order where it is frowned upon to utter his name in prayer. I was told there are Baptist preachers who are masons(I know) as if that validated a Christian affiliation. I know of Baptist preachers that are anything but Christ like. I grew up Baptist and if I had to go to a Baptist church today I'm not sure I would go to church regularly at all. No- I'm not condemning  Baptists as I don't intend to condemn free masonry either. I am trying to try to shed light on Biblical truth supported by scripture. So let me put Christianity at the forefront. That's what a Christ follower does.

Jesus is God in the Holy Trinity. In the great Commission he tells us to shout it out to the world.
Matthew 28 The Great Commission
Then the eleven disciples left for Galilee, going to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go.  When they saw him, they worshiped him—but some of them doubted! Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth.  Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.  Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

Matthew 10 32-33
"When a person stands before other people and says he believes in me, then I will say that person belongs to me. I will say this before my Father in heaven. But when a person stands before people and says he does not believe in me, then I will say that person does not belong to me. I will say this before my Father in heaven."

In closing for now, I want to stress this. I don't intend to condemn free masons but I do believe that in being a freemason you may sacrifice a large part of being a Christian. I don't claim to be the authority on freemasory nor do I know what they hold dear and what the truth is within that secret society. Further through discussions I have had today with masons there are discrepancies from lodge to lodge OR they are not all well informed on what expected practice is within that society from one lodge to the next.

I have said some things that are very unpopular to some freemasons, many of who I love dearly. On this very weekend, Jesus said some things that were very unpopular to Roman society and the Pharisees alike and he was crucified for it. I AM not comparing myself to Christ here but I AM trying to be Christ like. I've said some unpopular things and gotten roasted for it a bit. But what I say is supported by the scripture and it's no secret. If you are a freemason and can openly praise Jesus at your lodge then right on brother praise on. If you are restrained in your worship of Jesus Christ the living God, then you have a very big conflict in being a Christian. I'm not perfect but I am correct here because the Bible tells me so. And I'll shout it to the ends of the earth.
Psalm 71:15
My mouth will tell of your righteous deeds, of your saving acts all day long— though I know not how to relate them all.

Easter Sunday Evening Afterthought 4/24 -

Often when I write an entry here I have a thought, idea, or feeling that I want to get documented as it's fresh on my mind. So I lay this stuff out often without always thinking of lasting impact. Often after a few days I might even reflect back and feel differently. In this case I still stand with what I've already written but I want to add some additional thoughts.

Four years ago I thought I was a good Christian man. I was a good guy who did good things and treated people well. I believed in Jesus, I prayed(every now and then), and I went to church (hardly ever, sometimes years passed before I did). If someone asked my religious beliefs I would tell them without hesitation. ( I believe in God).

The truth is that I knew nothing about being a Christian. I was not a Christ follower. I did nothing to step outside my comfort zone to pray with, to or in front of others. I never read the Bible which is the true document that validates Jesus is God. I never lifted a finger to tell anyone about Christ. I didn't go to church, in fact I hated it and resented those that did. I felt judged. Bible beaters made me sick. I partied......a lot! I used profanity.......a lot! I didn't serve my community at all. I didn't set a good example for youth or anyone else. I was selfish. I was wrong to think I was a Christian.

Why do I say this? Because I do want to give credit where credit is due. Freemasons do set good examples for others. They are generous, help feed the hungry and get help for others. They help heal sick children. They are doing much good in the community. In short, they do many Christ-like things and they are good people. Many of them I suppose are Christians. Many of those that are Christians carry on and don't even consider the conflict I have mentioned mostly because it hasn't been brought to their attention. I strongly suspect ( I stress SUSPECT) that in old south, there are many lodge's where every member is Southern Baptist and they pray to Jesus because they don't have to worry about offending brethren that worship another God. I also know that generally they don't allow the name of Jesus to be spoken during prayer. Neither do our schools. It's frowned upon where many of us work( I still work).

So today I want to add more clarity that each individual must determine how you feel about this secret society. it depends on your walk with Christ and how or if that walk is restrained my freemasonry. If you don't have to sacrifice ANYTHING from your walk with Christ to be a freemason then you don't have a conflict. If you do have to sacrifice anything from your walk with Christ I beg you to consider what your doing and ask yourself where you Christian values are here.

There is another fraternal order I want to mention. It's where I have brothers and sisters that I know (with as much certainty as any secret society ) will rush to my aid if I am in need of assistance. We do every bit of the good deeds that secret societies do. We have times just for the men. we have times just for women. There are no secrets. No one has to wonder about the intent of our purpose. Obviously I'm talking about church and when done right you can't get enough of it. You live it. You're a better person for it. Most importantly, you ALWAYS glorify Christ when you're doing it. I think I am done with this now. I hope it meant something to someone.



Vic Webb said...

More on this subject:

How to leave the lodge:

Vic Webb said...

After reading this some of you are likely thinking "why don't you think these things through BEFORE you post them"???..........nah, that's probably not gonna happen. Like it or not this is how I roll.

Nannytam said...

I have enjoyed reading several of your blogs today. A scripture kept coming to mind while reading this one. Matthew 7:21-24 (KJV)21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. 24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: