Thanks to Brother Greg at the Masonic Traveler, I just discovered a blog called Practical Theology Discussions. The blog is run by Josh Buice, pastor of a Southern Baptist church in Louisville, Kentucky. He seems quite interested in exploring heresies and exposing them to the Light. So do I, when you come to think of it, except I LIKE heresies and think there is often more truth in them than in accepted Doctrine.
Pastor Josh's blog's masthead reads, "Discussing theology with a practical mind based on the holy, inspired, infallible, inerrant, immutable, never dying, highly exalted, final authority — Word of God!" Not much room there for "discussion," is there, if it's all an open and shut case? Wow... It must be nice to be that certain about anything! I'm not even that certain the Sun will rise tomorrow....
A long thread of comments trashing Freemasonry and Freemasons appears on the blog. I added my own comments, which I reprint below. Stop over and say hello to Pastor Josh.
I'm amazed at the amount of effort you've put into trashing something you obviously know little about. As the scientist pointed out, John Ankerberg and John Weldon are hardly experts on Freemasonry — they're just professional naysayers. They've built their financial empires scaring "good Christians" with horror tales about Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses, Roman Catholics, Freemasons, and any other group that doesn't toe the fundamentalist Christian line. Their opinions are just that — opinions.
When you talk about certain authors' writings — Mackey, Pike, etc. — as "Masonic Doctrine," you're way off base. These Masons were just men, speculating about what THEY thought Freemasonry was about. Their opinions are no more or less valid than, say, Ankerberg's... or yours... or mine. They're just opinions.
Freemasons don't agree on "doctrine." We can't even agree on what kind of barbecue sauce to use for the next fundraiser.
To say that 60%, or any percent of Masons don't "really" know what they're involved in, but that they are being used for some sinister secret purpose, is ridiculous. It's like saying that you — and you and you and you — don't really know what's going on with this "Christianity" thing, that the whole "cult" of Christianity is being controlled by, say, the Pope, or John Ankerberg, or Billy Graham, for his own purposes. Do all Christians agree on everything Christian?
Regarding Jim Shaw's being "saved" and then "exposing" Freemasonry: If the man swore before God to keep a secret, and then decided that he could share those secrets, it shows he's not very trustworthy. I mean, he didn't keep his word then, so why should you believe him later? And whoever said Shaw rose to the high rank of 33rd degree, then joined Scotish Rite, has it all backwards. In most jurisdictions, any degree above the 3rd (Master Mason) is either a part of the York Rite (which is quite Christian in flavor, and goes to the 10th degree) or the Scottish Rite (a different path, that goes from 4th-33rd degree).
At least in the south, where I am, Blue Lodge meetings are more like a Tuesday night Southern Baptist prayer meeting than some secret, spooky thing that you so worry about. In fact, most of the active members of my lodge ARE Southern Baptists, quite active ones. They have no idea who the Grand Architect of the Universe even is — they pray out loud in lodge to Jesus, even though, yes, sectarian religious discussion is officially discouraged because it is divisive.
I wish you'd get your facts straight, and then find some other windmill to tilt at.
The only secrets of a Master Mason are the signs, grips and tokens, and in some jurisdictions, the Ritual work that someone here already posted. You got any other questions — just ask.
Or visit any of these websites:
—The Widow's Son
Heresy | Fundamentalism | Evangelicals
The Don Quixote painting is by Octavio Ocampo