Are Freemasons Heretic? Resources

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Ken Thompsen | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, May 24 2021 2:03 PM

"If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you." - James 1:5

"For the Lord your God is the God of gods and the Lord of lords, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God who does not show partiality nor take a bribe." - Deuteronomy 10:17

The main fault of freemasonry and all mystery cults is the same fault as the first mystery cult of Gnosticism that was an ancient enemy of the Church: elitism. The reliance on "levels" and "degrees" of initiation and revelation, and upholding a corrupt social order of haves and have nots. The very idea that there are higher levels of knowledge and being privy to God's wisdom more than others is anathema. The same Christ died for all, and freely gives to all. The Kingdom of God is where the least become the greatest and the great become the servant. It is a place where Christ himself set a child beside him to display who is actually the greatest in his kingdom. 

Of course, elitism isn't just limited to gnostics or mystery cults either. Many so called churches might as well also be cults of personality too, with their own form of gatekeeping and barriers on the gifted laity. Definitely the academic world as well.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, May 24 2021 2:06 PM

Paul Caneparo:
Joseph.  Thanks for an incredibly well reasoned explanation about the use of the Forums, 

Yes

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, May 24 2021 2:14 PM

Ken Thompsen:
The very idea that there are higher levels of knowledge and being privy to God's wisdom more than others is anathema.

It may be, or then again, it may not be. The forums are not the place for evaluative statements on matters of doctrine or dogma ... especially in this thread. The statistical probability is that there are members of a Masonic Lodge in the forums -- we need to be sure they feel welcome.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, May 24 2021 2:22 PM

I agree Joseph which was why I highlighted the example I did in direct response to your suggestion. I agree with your suggestion but the reality of people is even doing what you suggested will get you into trouble ok these forums because people are people. 

Joseph Turner:

DIsciple II:

Joseph Turner:
As I read the rules, responses could be framed as "such and such resource argues against freemasonry calling them heretical, based on blah, blah, blah," because again, one would simply be explaining the view of the author of the resource offered by Faithlife.

Sounds good in practice Joseph but if you even do what you suggested you get beat up by other people on these forums including a certain forum MVP. One is not even allowed to "be explaining the view of the author of the resource offered by Faithlife." without having people assume your intent and accuse you of saying things that never entered your mind let alone your heart. Ironically in same thread someone from same faith group as said MVP clearly brought their theological bias into their comments and that comment was allowed to go by without comment from the MVP. Certainly appears to be that forum some MVP allows their theological bias to influence whom they 'police' and what they deem should be 'policed'. They certainly don't share your view on this matter.

My comments were directed at everyone, including myself.  MVPs are human and get caught up, and I would also point out that by the very nature of being an MVP, they are on the forums more than most, so it is more likely that someone will slip up at some point.  I have actually seen Faithlife employees slip up, and once I even watched a high ranking representative respond to a complaint by a customer publicly on the forum which detailed several personal details concerning the interactions involved behind the scenes of the complaint, and I was a little surprised.  I think it had to do with someone buying resources under several accounts when on sale and then reselling that software at a high price, and the Faithlife representative was clearly not happy and allowed emotions to pour out onto the forum via a public all out on the bad behavior.

My point is simply that we are all human, and we all fall short.  In all of the threads that fell of the rails, it took more than one person to cause the derailment.

Posts 50
Ken Thompsen | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, May 24 2021 2:22 PM

MJ. Smith:

Ken Thompsen:
The very idea that there are higher levels of knowledge and being privy to God's wisdom more than others is anathema.

we need to be sure they feel welcome.

I am welcoming them. As I pointed out, "If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you." - James 1:5 . The Good News of Christ is not a place for secrets and initiations. Else it wouldn't be "good news". The Apostle is offering freemasons a better deal than what they're getting. I'm just pointing this out. It's very welcoming.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, May 24 2021 2:59 PM

Adam Borries (Faithlife):

Beloved Amodeo:
Is it possible to stay within the forum guidelines and get recommendations on authoritative resources that discuss whether or not freemasonry is heretic to Christianity?

No. 

Please welcome members of Masonic Lodges as they are; don't try to change them. There have "always" been secretive elements and initiations in Christianity - if you want, I'll provide some Logos resources for your reading pleasure. Adam Borries is a Faithlife employee, a fact lost when he is quoted.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 224
1Cor10:31 | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, May 24 2021 4:08 PM

DIsciple II:

some MVP allows their theological bias to influence whom they 'police' and what they deem should be 'policed'. 

As wrong as this discriminatory policing is, what is worse was their bias resulted in flagging my posts as being against guidelines when they were clearly within the guidelines.

Posts 50
Ken Thompsen | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, May 24 2021 4:39 PM

MJ. Smith:

Please welcome members of Masonic Lodges as they are; don't try to change them. There have "always" been secretive elements and initiations in Christianity - if you want, I'll provide some Logos resources for your reading pleasure. Adam Borries is a Faithlife employee, a fact lost when he is quoted.

Not "always". Mystery cults were seen as heretics in both East and West for over a thousand years. Starting with every Church Father who denounced gnosticism. And then ending with the Seventh Ecumenical Council, which pronounced anathemas on teaching Platonic ideas in general (the structure of mystery cults were in a way based on Pythagoras and Platonic and Neo-Platonism idealism, who himself was a student of Pythagoras). The Seventh Council also denounced the Bogomils specifically, who were a new gnostic cult at the time. In the Roman Catholic West, Cathars were never safe. The Pope himself called for an outright Crusade against Cathars. Sadly, they were harshly dealt with. Hermeticism wasn't as large or as direct an opponent as Gnosticism and fell out of favor until texts were rediscovered in the Renaissance. This is the basis for some of the newer cults which formed again in the Enlightenment age. That and some of the burgeoning political ideas of the Enlightenment enabled the call for secret groups. They were basically trying to remove kings and start revolutions. Having secret groups came with the territory. Some of these men (like America's founding fathers) were more political and deist than anything. I think the European groups got more esoteric as time went on (Rosucrucians, Golden Dawn, etc).

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, May 24 2021 5:56 PM

I was offering readings along very different lines - baptism as one of the early rites of initiation and the dismissal of the catechumens in the worship service as evidence of secrecy, For the latter, this search should find references in your library.  From a commonly owned resource:

2. While it is clear that heathen were carefully excluded from the Christian mysteries, it is equally clear that from the earliest times they were admitted to that part of Christian worship which consisted mainly of instruction. St. Paul (1 Cor. 14:23) evidently contemplates the possibility of heathen entering the place where preaching took place, whether it were in the shape of an utterance in “tongues,” or prophesying. At the end of the 2nd century, all portions of divine worship were not open to all alike; for Tertullian (De Praescript. c. 41) reproaches certain heretics with their want of order and discipline, in that not only catechumens were admitted to the same privileges as the faithful, but even heathen, if they chanced to enter the place, had equal access; so did the heretics cast their mock-pearls before swine. In this it is implied that the orthodox were more careful of their treasure. [DISCIPLINA ARCANI.] The words of Origen (c. Celsum, iii. p. 142, Spencer), where, speaking of the care bestowed upon catechumens, he says that Christians had in view to prevent persons of evil life from coming to their common assembly (ἐπὶ τὸν κοινὸν αὐτῶν σύλλογον), seem to imply that some kind of scrutiny took place before men were admitted to any Christian assembly whatever; for he contrasts the Cynic practice of receiving all comers to their harangues with that of the Christians, and the word σύλλογος does not appear to be taken (like σύναξις) in the limited sense of “the Eucharistic mystery.”

Samuel Cheetham, “Heathen, The,” ed. William Smith and Samuel Cheetham, A Dictionary of Christian Antiquities (London: John Murray, 1875–1880), 762.

I don't disagree with you -- we were simply speaking of different things. I found this on the Logos site The Inner Church is the Hope of the World: Western Esotericism as a Theology of Liberation Faithlife Ebooks - perhaps, I'll see if it is worthy reading.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 9018
DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, May 25 2021 2:27 AM

Here’s one resource, if you speak Spanish: https://www.logos.com/product/208305/masoneria-bajo-escrutinio-un-enfoque-acerca-del-paganismo-religioso-que-mas-influye-entre-nuestros-politicos-latinoamericanos 

This is a hot topic in Latin American also.  They have a few lodges spread out everywhere.

DAL

Ps.  It’s an interesting mini introduction, but what caught my attention was the appendix, which says, “Masonry: A Challenge for Calvinists.” It seems this book ties masonry with the occult.  I’ll read it since I own it and see the perspective being presented here.  I included the English translation next to the Spanish TOC

TOC

CONTENIDO
Introducción
Capitulo 1
Naturaleza y orígenes de la masonería — Nature and Origine of Masonry 
Capitulo 2
Análisis sistemático y doctrinal de la masonería — Systematic and Doctrinal Analysis of Masonry 
Capitulo 3
Ritos, rituales, juramentos masónicos y la conexión con el ocultismo — Rites, Rituals and Masonry Oaths and the connection with the occult
Capitulo 4
Relación de la masonería con el antiguo paganismo religioso y ocultista — The Relationship of Masonry with the Old Religious and Occult Paganism
Capitulo 5
Masonería, cábal a judia y la biblia — Masonry, Jewish Cabal and the Bible
Apendice
La masonería: un reto para los calvinistas — Masonry: A Challenge for Calvinists.
Bibliografía

Posts 356
Ralph Mauch | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, May 25 2021 10:19 AM

Great reply ks4j, I enjoy reading posts like this, but seldom answer, but am replying because if one would search their Logos Library they should find some answers even if the book isn't specifically on freemasonry. I got 737  results in 237 resources. 

Blessings.

Ralph 

Keep Smiling 4 Jesus :):

Appropriate for Faithlife Forum discussion is a Basic Search to find articles or chapters:

([field heading,largetext] freemason OR masonic) WITHIN 22 WORDS (association OR authoritative OR beliefs OR cult OR family OR lodge OR religion OR rituals OR secret OR Templars OR values)

Bookstore section has "More >>" so can click for more resources to consider.

Keep Smiling Smile

Posts 190
Bob | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, May 25 2021 11:45 AM

Ralph Mauch:

Great reply ks4j, I enjoy reading posts like this, but seldom answer, but am replying because if one would search their Logos Library they should find some answers even if the book isn't specifically on freemasonry. I got 737  results in 237 resources. 

Blessings.

Ralph 

Wow, I only have 6 results in 3 articles.  You must have a large library!  I have a little over 5,000 resources.

Bob

Posts 2913
Jan Krohn | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, May 25 2021 3:40 PM

The apologetics course that I'm going to take shortly has freemasonry as one of the topics. Here's the text book with the relevant chapter:

The Challenge of the Cults and New Religions | Logos Bible Software

(I haven't bought it yet as I want to wait for the June deals, so I can't comment on the contents yet.)

The lecture is supposed to have identical content as the book, and is freely accessible.

Free Masonry | Institute of Biblical Defense (sermonaudio.com)

Edit: The Catholic Encyclopedia, which many of us own from the recent CP mega deal, has a long article on freemasonry.

https://ref.ly/logosres/cathency?hw=Freemasonry

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Posts 6004
DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, May 25 2021 6:46 PM

Thanks for the links.  My Grandfather I believe was a Freemason but he passed away when I was only 14 months old so only know of anecdotal mentions of his involvement - after he passed the family looked into the bag he used to take to meetings and they found a bible, I don't know what else was found. I don't know his level of involvement or when / where he got involved.  He was born in Scotland but migrated from there in 1949 so I have no idea of if he want involved there or became involved after migrating with his wife and children, including my Father. To my knowledge none of his children were involved and I have no knowledge of my Grandfathers forebears potential involvement.

So for me there is little bit of  personal interest in this group and something I want to dig more into their beliefs and practices.  About ten years ago they had an 'open house' in my city and took people through a tour of their building and explained what they did at their meetings and what it was about - but with those things you only learn what they want to disclose.  So the link to the lecture provided will be interesting to me in growing my understanding of this movement. Where my growing understanding will take my conclusions won't be influenced by my Grandfather's involvement, for all accounts he was a good man but many good people hold onto very different belief systems that I don't hold onto. To whatever degree he was involved he will by Grandfather that I was too young to remember but I'm told I had a good connection with at that young age.

Jan Krohn:

The apologetics course that I'm going to take shortly has freemasonry as one of the topics. Here's the text book with the relevant chapter:

The Challenge of the Cults and New Religions | Logos Bible Software

(I haven't bought it yet as I want to wait for the June deals, so I can't comment on the contents yet.)

The lecture is supposed to have identical content as the book, and is freely accessible.

Free Masonry | Institute of Biblical Defense (sermonaudio.com)

Edit: The Catholic Encyclopedia, which many of us own from the recent CP mega deal, has a long article on freemasonry.

https://ref.ly/logosres/cathency?hw=Freemasonry

Posts 1406
David Wanat | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, May 25 2021 7:33 PM

Out of a library of 9540 resources I had 74 results in 32 articles in 19 resources. Several seem to have come from the Perseus Civil War collection.

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Beloved Amodeo | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, May 25 2021 7:37 PM

DIsciple II:

Thanks for the links.  My Grandfather I believe was a Freemason but he passed away when I was only 14 months old so only know of anecdotal mentions of his involvement - after he passed the family looked into the bag he used to take to meetings and they found a bible, I don't know what else was found. I don't know his level of involvement or when / where he got involved.  He was born in Scotland but migrated from there in 1949 so I have no idea of if he want involved there or became involved after migrating with his wife and children, including my Father. To my knowledge none of his children were involved and I have no knowledge of my Grandfathers forebears potential involvement.

So for me there is little bit of  personal interest in this group and something I want to dig more into their beliefs and practices.  About ten years ago they had an 'open house' in my city and took people through a tour of their building and explained what they did at their meetings and what it was about - but with those things you only learn what they want to disclose.  So the link to the lecture provided will be interesting to me in growing my understanding of this movement. Where my growing understanding will take my conclusions won't be influenced by my Grandfather's involvement, for all accounts he was a good man but many good people hold onto very different belief systems that I don't hold onto. To whatever degree he was involved he will by Grandfather that I was too young to remember but I'm told I had a good connection with at that young age.

Jan Krohn:

The apologetics course that I'm going to take shortly has freemasonry as one of the topics. Here's the text book with the relevant chapter:

The Challenge of the Cults and New Religions | Logos Bible Software

(I haven't bought it yet as I want to wait for the June deals, so I can't comment on the contents yet.)

The lecture is supposed to have identical content as the book, and is freely accessible.

Free Masonry | Institute of Biblical Defense (sermonaudio.com)

Edit: The Catholic Encyclopedia, which many of us own from the recent CP mega deal, has a long article on freemasonry.

https://ref.ly/logosres/cathency?hw=Freemasonry

Disciple II and Jan,

Your posts are much appreciated. Disciple II, my grandfather was a member of the Odd Fellows it is another fraternal order. I don't know much about it and he never talked about it. The motivation for this thread was that I saw it mentioned that two Christian authors I respect, John Calvin and Andrew Murray were said to be Masons. I don't know the truth of these claims, but they concerned me and left me with questions about the organization and these brothers.

I don't believe the claim regarding Calvin, but the claim regarding Andrew Murray, one of my favorite Christian authors really bothered me. I have since let this go as I trust the sincerity of Murray's writings. Whether he was a Mason or not is irrelevant as he was a genuine witness for the Word of God.

Meanwhile, Jesus kept on growing wiser and more mature, and in favor with God and his fellow man.

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Posts 1406
David Wanat | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, May 25 2021 7:49 PM

Beloved Amodeo:

The motivation for this thread was that I saw it mentioned that two Christian authors I respect, John Calvin and Andrew Murray were said to be Masons. I don't know the truth of these claims, but they concerned me and left me with questions about the organization and these brothers.

I don't believe the claim regarding Calvin, but the claim regarding Andrew Murray, one of my favorite Christian authors really bothered me. I have since let this go as I trust the sincerity of Murray's writings. Whether he was a Mason or not is irrelevant as he was a genuine witness for the Word of God.

I'd probably question the claim about Calvin, given that Freemasonry—despite their own claims—can't really be traced earlier than the 18th century (though some believe that they derived from the Rosicrucians which were reportedly late 17th century). So I doubt it was around when Calvin was. As for Andrew Murray, while he would have been around, I don't know enough about him to say the claim is credible.

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Posts 9018
DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 26 2021 5:46 AM

David Wanat:

I'd probably question the claim about Calvin, given that Freemasonry—despite their own claims—can't really be traced earlier than the 18th century (though some believe that they derived from the Rosicrucians which were reportedly late 17th century). So I doubt it was around when Calvin was. As for Andrew Murray, while he would have been around, I don't know enough about him to say the claim is credible.

Rosicrucians? There’s nothing Christian about them, I know for sure.  They’re sorta popular in Latin American countries, but not everyone can’t “get in.” Too complicated and their “rituals” involve some heavy weird stuff.  I’m not going to get into any of it, but stay clear from them.  🏃‍♀️ 💨 

DAL

Posts 1406
David Wanat | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 26 2021 5:57 AM

DAL:

David Wanat:

I'd probably question the claim about Calvin, given that Freemasonry—despite their own claims—can't really be traced earlier than the 18th century (though some believe that they derived from the Rosicrucians which were reportedly late 17th century). So I doubt it was around when Calvin was. As for Andrew Murray, while he would have been around, I don't know enough about him to say the claim is credible.

Rosicrucians? There’s nothing Christian about them, I know for sure.  They’re sorta popular in Latin American countries, but not everyone can’t “get in.” Too complicated and their “rituals” involve some heavy weird stuff.  I’m not going to get into any of it, but stay clear from them.  🏃‍♀️ 💨 

DAL

The whole point of my post was to express doubt that Calvin was a member, not to advocate membership. I have no intention of getting involved.

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Posts 9018
DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 26 2021 5:59 AM

David Wanat:

DAL:

David Wanat:

I'd probably question the claim about Calvin, given that Freemasonry—despite their own claims—can't really be traced earlier than the 18th century (though some believe that they derived from the Rosicrucians which were reportedly late 17th century). So I doubt it was around when Calvin was. As for Andrew Murray, while he would have been around, I don't know enough about him to say the claim is credible.

Rosicrucians? There’s nothing Christian about them, I know for sure.  They’re sorta popular in Latin American countries, but not everyone can’t “get in.” Too complicated and their “rituals” involve some heavy weird stuff.  I’m not going to get into any of it, but stay clear from them.  🏃‍♀️ 💨 

DAL

The whole point of my post was to express doubt that Calvin was a member, not to advocate membership. I have no intention of getting involved.

I know, no one stated otherwise.

DAL

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