As the Southern Baptists held their convention in Houston back in the month of June, they were supposed to take a vote on whether or not Freemasonry is compatible with Christianity. I suppose they sensed a need to vote on such an issue because of the 3.5 million Masons in the U.S., 1.3 million are Southern Baptists. Regardless of how the vote turned out, what seems incredible to me is that they would resort to such a process as this to determine something right or wrong, compatible or incompatible instead of going to the superior, final source of authority, the Word of God.
It may be they have forgotten that "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness" (II Tim. 3:16). It makes sense to me that the determining factor of whether something is Scriptural or not is to find out what the Bible has to say. Jesus said in John 5:39 to "search the scriptures."
When Paul and Silas went to Berea, they commended the believers there for they "searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so" (Acts 17:11). When we fail to realize and recognize that the Bible is reliable and the only final authority, and when we depart from it as the sole standard of truth, we are left with chaos, confusion, and a situation where every man does that which is right in his own eyes (Judges 21:25).
To the ordinary observer, Freemasonry may seem to be an innocent organization connected with secret signs, insignias, and mysterious functions, sort of a higher sophisticated class of "Boy Scouts" for men that do good works for mankind. Some may consider it perfectly harmless, even from a religious point of view because it acknowledges God as "the Great Architect of the Universe" and even displays an open Bible among its symbols. But when Freemasonry is examined under the light of God’s Word, it becomes clear and evident that no child of God should have anything to do with Freemasonry.
No doubt there are some good people involved with Freemasonry, even Christians who have been ensnared by it but what are they to do?" "...come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord..." (II Cor. 6:17).
The Art of Deception
One must keep in mind that deception is the ruling principle Freemasonry. Even though Masonry talks much about morality, this does not necessarily mean it is Christian. Practically every pagan religion and cult has its own moral code and ethical standards which stress right conduct such as unselfishness, tolerance, brotherly love, kindness, etc. Under this pretense of moral excellency, Masonic teachings are diametrically opposed to Christianity. In Freemasonry, Satan has skillfully united idolatry and paganism with Christianity while using Christian terms and names. Word of warning to the wise: Freemasonry is a subversive, anti-Christian movement with its roots deeply buried in occult teachings.
Anyone desiring to become a member of a lodge must apply by petition, either in writing or using the standard form of petition supplied by the lodge. The petitioner is to pray "...that I may be initiated into the mysteries of Freemasonry." According to a Masonic book entitled, Morals and Dogmas of Freemasonry by Albert Pike, masonry is "...a successor of the Mysteries" and "is identical with the ancient Mysteries."
According to the Encyclopedia of Freemasonry written by 33rd degree mason, Albert Mackey, says that the Ancient Mysteries are: "the secret worship rites of the pagan gods. Each of the pagan gods had, besides the public and open, a secret worship paid to him, to which none were admitted but those who had been selected by preparatory ceremonies called Initiation."
It should be pointed out then that if Freemasonry is a successor of and is identical to the Ancient Mysteries, then one would have to conclude that the candidate for initiation into the mysteries of Freemasonry is also a candidate for initiation into the Ancient Mysteries which are the secret worship rites to pagan gods.
A Supreme Being
It is requested of the candidate into Freemasonry that he declare his belief in a Supreme Being; it does not matter what ideas or images you conjure up of God, just so you believe in a god. This is definitely contrary to the teaching of Scriptures: "I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me...Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else" (Isa. 45:5,22).
Page 167 of "Morals and Dogma of Freemasonry" says: "opening wide its portals, it invites every man to enter there and live in peace and harmony, the Protestant, Catholic, Jew, Moslem; every man who will lead a truly virtuous and moral life, love his brethren, minister to the sick and distressed and believe in the one, all-powerful, all-wise, everywhere present God, Architect, Creator, and Preserver of all things." So in other words, Masonry equates the true God of the Bible with the false gods of heathen, paganistic faiths.
Never is it stated in Freemasonry that Jesus Christ is God. Instead the candidate receives this charge upon initiation: "The world's Great Architect is our Supreme Grand Master; and the unerring rule He has given us, is that by which we work. Religious disputes are never suffered within the Lodge; for as Freemasons, we worship God as our consciences require, and thus we are united in one sacred band." Page 226 of Morals and Dogma of Freemasonry says: "Masonry, around whose altars the Christian, the Hebrew, the Moslem, the Brahmin, the followers of Confucius and Zoroaster, can assemble as brethren and unite in prayer to the one God who is above all..."
It is impossible for a true Christian to unite in prayer with those who deny Christ’s deity and His substitutionary death on the Cross for salvation. According to II Cor. 6:14-18 a Christian is forbidden to be yoked up with unbelievers. It is impossible for righteousness to have fellowship with unrighteousness, for light to have communion with darkness. Those that are of Christ should not have concord with those that are of Belial.
Those who are believers in Christ should not count themselves as the same as those who are unbelievers and infidels. What agreement should the temple of God have with idols? What agreement do you have with those who do not pray in Christ’s name, those who are not born again, those who do not love the Lord Jesus? We must take heed to the plain teaching of the Word of God and come out from among them and be ye separate.
Some might argue that no one can be a true Mason without being a Christian. But as we’ve seen thus far, the teachings of the lodges and the statements of high authorities in the lodges all prove that to be untrue. To be a Mason, you are not required to accept Christ as Saviour, but simply believe there is a Supreme Being and nothing more than that. Jews, who believe that Christ was only the bastard son of a Jewish harlot, are welcomed in the lodges.
They believe there is a God and that is enough. the Mohammedans, who say that Allah is the one God and Mohammed is his prophet, can be received as regular members of Masonic lodges. The lodges are full of unbelievers and Christ-rejectors and any Christian who joins such a secret order commits the horrible sin of yoking up with unbelievers which is specifically forbidden by the Word of God.
No one can deny that Masonic lodges claim to be religious. They do not claim to be Christian but they do claim to be religious. They talk about God, have prayer, the Masonic meeting place is called a temple, the lodges have chaplains, priests, Worshipful Masters; they talk about immortality, resurrection, heaven; they profess to show how to get to heaven and even Scripture verses are frequently quoted. So we can readily admit that the lodges are religious. Masonry has a religion but the religion of Masonry is not Christianity but instead it is anti-Christian and paganistic. This can be proved, not from my own ideas or opinions, but from the writings of Masons themselves.
Albert G. Mackey, one of Masonry’s most learned and famous men, was responsible for writing many books on the Masonic Lodge but the book that is considered one of the best authority on Masonry is entitled,Encyclopedia of Freemasonry. It contains about 1,000 pages with articles upon almost every conceivable subject that is in any way related to Freemasonry.
On pages 618-619, under the article entitled, "Religion," Mackey says: "I contend, without any sort of hesitation, that Masonry is, in every sense of the word except one, and that its least philosophical, an eminently religious institution–that it is indebted solely to the religious element which it contains for its origin and for its continued existence..."
Here Mr. Mackey say that Masonry is a religion. He further states:
"Now it is plain that Masonry may rightfully claim to be called a religious institution. Look at its ancient landmarks, its sublime ceremonies, its profound symbols and allegories–all inculcating religious doctrine, commanding religious observance, and teaching religious truth, and who can deny that it is eminently a religious institution? But the religion of Masonry is not sectarian. It admits men of every creed within its hospitable bosom, rejecting none and approving none for his peculiar faith. It is not Judaism, though there is nothing in it to offend a Jew; it is not Christianity, but there is nothing in it repugnant to the faith of a Christian. Its religion is that general one of natural and primitive revelation...in which all men may agree and none may differ."
Then Mackey concludes by saying, "Masonry, then, is indeed a religious institution; and on this ground mainly, if not alone, should the religious Mason defend it."
There you have it, from one of Freemasonry’s highest authority and greatest author who declares that Freemasonry has a religion and that religion is not Christianity. He says that while it is a religion, it is not the Christian religion. Therefore, if it is not the Christian religion then it is a false religion. If the religion of Freemasonry is false, then it is not of God. If the religion of Freemasonry is not of God, then it is of the devil himself.
Masonry is a religion; it is a false religion with a false salvation preaching a false gospel about a false god and saviour. In a booklet entitled, Is Freemasonry Christian?, by Jim McCormick, he gives the following evaluation of Freemasonry:
1) Freemasonry is a religion of secrecy; Christianity is a revealing faith but the candidate for the Masonic Lodge is bound to secrecy.
2) Freemasonry is an oath-bound religion; in degree after degree oath is piled upon oath. Bloody penalties for the violation of obligations are administered and taken.
3) Freemasonry is a deceiving religion.
4) Freemasonry is an usurping religion; the princes of the 18th degree of the Scottish Rite view the cross of Christ as a "dire calamity" for Masonry and by their ritualistic labors seek to retrieve the loss. In so doing their substitute their works for the finished work of Christ.
5) Freemasonry is a blasphemous religion; in the 19th degree the candidate is anointed with oil on the crown of the head and the head Mason says to him: "Be thou a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek," thus usurping the very priesthood of Jesus Christ.
6) Freemasonry is an abominating religion. The candidate for the 19th degree of the Scottish Rite is invested with a sash displaying 12 stars representing the 12 signs of the Zodiac.
7) The god of Masonry is a composite deity, a combination of different gods of various religions with Lucifer being the ultimate god of Freemasonry.
The average Mason is like some church members. He only does what is absolutely necessary to become a member and stops there. His knowledge of Masonry is based upon his little experience in a local lodge and he never makes any effort to ascertain exactly what is the religious position of Masonry as an institution. As a born again Christian, I cannot logically nor scripturally belong to a Masonic Lodge of any sort. A person may be saved and belong to one, but he cannot do so with the approval and blessing of Almighty God. There even may be those who will claim that they were saved as a result of being involved with the Masons but I would venture to say that is an exception rather than the rule.
Let us not forget that the only institution that the Lord Jesus Christ ever sanctioned was the local church. He is the founder, foundation, Head, and builder of the church. He loved the church and gave Himself for it. He purchased the church with His own blood. If all the energy, effort, time, money, and dedication were channeled through the local church instead of for the lodges, what a difference it would make in our churches. Remember, "Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen." (Eph. 3:21).
No Southern Baptist, Independent Baptist, any other kind of Baptist, or for that matter, any child of God, should be a member of or affiliated with such and unscriptural organization as Freemasonry.
The only course open for a child of God is that of separation. The Bible declares: "Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful" (Ps. 1:1).
Take heed to Eph. 5:11-12, "And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret."