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Masonic Service Association of North America

Focus December 2005

Response to an Evangelical Pastor

Recently an Evangelical Pastor preached a sermon on Freemasonry that was filled with errors. Dr. Gary Leazer was asked to respond and did so in a paper from which this extract was taken:

Hiram Abif

Pastor DeLong refers to Hiram Abif in his sermon and calls Hiram Abif “another Savior” for Freemasonry who “was miraculously raised to life after several days.” Freemasonry teaches neither of Pastor DeLong’s claims. Any biblical student will acknowledge there are two Hirams (or Hurams) connected with the building of King Solomon’s temple. One was Hiram, King of Tyre (1 Kings 5:1, 1 Chr. 14:1). The second Hiram was also from Tyre. He, whom two Bibles and Masons call “Hiram Abif”, was the son of a widow of the tribe of Dan (2 Chr. 2:13). This Hiram was skilled in the making of bronze and built the pillars, the basin on the backs of twelve oxen, and other temple implements. “Abif” has been translated as “my father”, suggesting to some that he was King Hiram’s father. However, others believe the name simply is a title of respect because of his skill in working with bronze. Biblical historians find the name ‘Hiram Abif” in two Bibles. The first and better known of the two is Martin Luther’s German translation (1533), in which he refers to Hiram Abif in two verses. The second Bible was translated by Miles Coverdale into English in 1535. Coverdale’s translation was based on Luther’s Bible. All Masonic rituals are dramas performed by actors (Lodge members) to teach certain moral lessons to candidates. As in all dramas, whether the film The Ten Commandments or Masonic ritual, considerable liberty is sometimes taken with the Biblical text. Masonic ritual tells the story of Hiram Abif being killed by three men, who secretly buried his body. Later, the body is discovered, “raised” up out of its temporary grave to be reburied properly on the Temple grounds. The Masonic ritual says nothing about Hiram Abif being brought back to life as Pastor DeLong claims. In fact, the emphasis is that Hiram died and remained dead.

(Source: Dr. Gary Leazer, PGC – Critique of a Sermon on Freemasonry)

Lafayette Trip to be Re-Enacted

An official delegation representing France released the following statement:

The frigate Hermione in which La Fayette navigated to join George Washington in 1780 will again cross the Atlantic in 2009 to come to Boston May 20th, (Lafayette Day); New York, (July 4); and Annapolis (July 14th). The frigate is rebuilt in the same city of Rochefort, with the same tools, the same scales, the same wood.

The ship and the “La Fayette Trip” symbolize Fraternity, Liberty, and Democracy, all the values of the Century of Lights still alive today that we must strongly promote.

As further information becomes available we will keep our readers informed.

Excerpts from MQ

MQ is the official magazine of the United Grand Lodge of England. MIC thought our readers might enjoy excerpts from a few of the stories appearing in this publication.

The King and the Craft

“The world today requires spiritual and moral regeneration. I have no doubt, after many years as a member of our Order, that Freemasonry can play a part in this vital need.”

The above was written by HM King George VI on 5 November 1951 in a letter to MW Bro Rt Hon the Earl of Scarbrough. His Majesty had promised to install Lord Scarbrough as Grand Master on 6 November, but was prevented from doing so by what proved to be his final illness.

It echoes similar statements he had made on a number of occasions when he attended Grand Lodge as both King and a Past Grand Master. He was in no doubt that Freemasonry was a force for good and had a vital part to play in the life of his country and empire.

Hollywood Comes to Grand Lodge

The ever-growing popularity of Freemasons’ Hall as a venue for the film and television world was underlined in May, when a major event was held there for the Hollywood blockbuster Disney film The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, part of which was actually filmed in the building.

The Grand Temple and surrounding areas were completely transformed for the 1,000 guests to the extravaganza in a way never seen in the building before. The event followed the World Premiere at the Empire, Leicester Square, and was organized by Amanda Davies and her company, AD Events.

As guests came through the Tower entrance in Wild Street, they were greeted by a Vogan soldier, one of the characters from the film created by Hensons, with another Vogan helping in the cloakroom. Afterwards a couple of them danced with the guests. All the waiting staff were dressed in costumes.

Old Soldier Remembered

Troop Sergeant Major Richard Williams of the 17th Lancers, a Freemason who was awarded the Victoria Cross following the Charge of the Light Brigade at Balaclava in the Crimea on 25 October 1854, was honoured by Masons, non-Masons and civil and military dignitaries in October.

The ceremony took place at his grave at St. Mark’s Church, Worsley in Lancashire, to mark the 150th anniversary of the famous Charge against the Russian guns. The church bell was tolled 110 times to mark the number of chargers killed, and a trumpeter sounded the Last Post and Reveille.

Richard Williams was initiated into United Lodge No. 697 at Colchester in 1857, joined Bridgewater Lodge No. 1213 in 1870 and was a founder of Worsley Lodge No. 1814 and Lathom Lodge No. 2229, all in West Lancashire. He died on 7 July 1910 and the cortege was escorted by mounted policemen.

(Source: These stories were taken from MQ (UGLE)
Issue 12 -- January 2005 and Issue 14 – July 2005

 

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