The Symbolism of Masonry and Its Connection with the Bible


PERTAINING TO THE SYMBOLISM OF MASONRY 
AND ITS CONNECTION WITH THE BIBLE

FROM THE WORKS OF ALBERT G. MACKEY


ABIF:   WHY WAS HIRAM, THE BUILDER, AND ANCIENT GRAND MASTER
	   CALLED "ABIF"?

  o  A HEBREW WORD SIGNIFYING "HIS FATHER".  IT IS OFTEN USED
	IN THE SCRIPTURES AS A TITLE OF HONOUR.  THE SCRIPTURES
	REFER TO HIM AS THE "WIDOWS SON".  1 KINGS CH 7:13 & 14.


ACACIA: WHAT IS ACACIA KNOWN AS IN MASONRY?

  o  IN SPECULATIVE MASONRY, ACACIA IS A SYMBOL OF IMMORTALITY
	OF THE SOUL.  ITS BIBLICAL NAME IS "SHITTIM WOOD". 
	EXODUS CH 25:10.


ADONIRAM:   WHAT WAS THE DUTY OF ADONIRAM AT THE BUILDING OF THE
	   TEMPLE?

  o  CHIEF RECEIVER OF TRIBUTE UNDER DAVID AND SOLOMON.
	1 KINGS CH 4:6


ALL SEEING EYE:
	   WHAT IS THE SOURCE OF THIS SYMBOL AND ITS MEANING?

  o  IT IS THE SYMBOL OF THE OMNIPRESENT DEITY.  "THE EYES OF 
	JEHOVAH ARE IN EVERY PLACE".  PROVERBS CH 15:3 PSALMS 33:18.


AMEN:   WHAT IS THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE WORD "AMEN"?

  o  THE RESPONSE TO EVERY MASONIC PRAYER IS "SO MOTE IT BE"
	MEANING AMEN COLLECTIVELY.  THE WORD IN HEBREW SIGNIFIES
	VERILY, TRULY, CERTAINLY AND IS WHERE ONE PERSON CONFIRMS
	THE WORD OF ANOTHER.  REVELATIONS CH 22:20 AND 21.


APRON:  WHAT IS THE SYMBOLISM OF THE APRON?

  o  THERE IS NO ONE OF THE SYMBOLS OF SPECULATIVE MASONRY MORE
	IMPORTANT IN ITS TEACHINGS THAN THE LAMBSKIN.  "BY THE
	LAMBSKIN" THE MASON IS REMINDED OF THAT PURITY OF LIFE AND
	RECTITUDE OF CONDUCT WHICH IS SO NECESSARY TO GAINING
	ADMISSION TO THE CELESTIAL LODGE ABOVE, WHERE THE SUPREME
	ARCHITECT OF THE UNIVERSE FOREVER PRESIDES. 1 PETER CH 1:19.

ARK OF THE COVENANT:
	   WHO BUILT THE ARK OF THE COVENANT AND OF WHAT WAS IT
	   COMPOSED?

  o  THE ARK OF THE COVENANT WAS BUILT BY MOSES AT GOD'S COMMAND,
	IN WHICH WERE KEPT THE TWO TABLES OF STONE ON WHICH WERE
	ENGRAVED THE TEN COMMANDMENTS.  EXODUS CH 25:10.


BEASTS OF THE EARTH:
	   WHERE IS THE BASIS OF THE ANCIENT PENALTIES RECORDED IN
	   THE BIBLE?

  o  THE EXPRESSION IS RECORDED IN THE BOOK OF JEREMIAH.
	CH 34:18-20.


BIBLE:  WHY IS THE BIBLE KNOWN AS THE BOOK OF THE LAW?

  o  KNOWN MASONICALLY AS THE BOOK OF THE LAW, WHEN OPENED AT ITS
	PROPER PLACE IN LODGE, BECAUSE IT IS DIFFUSING THE PROPER
	LIGHT AMONG THE BRETHREN.  IT WAS NOT REFERRED TO AS ONE OF
	THE GREAT LIGHTS UNTIL ABOUT 1760.  AMOS CH. 7 7-9;
	ECCLESIASTES CH 12:1-7; JOSHUA CH 1:8.


BLUE LODGE:
	   WHAT IS THE PECULIAR CHARACTERISTIC OF THE COLOUR BLUE?

  o  THE THREE DEGREES OF SYMBOLIC MASONRY ARE CLOTHED IN OR
	ORNAMENTED WITH BLUE; IT IS A COLOUR OF TRUTH OR FIDELITY. 
	IT IS AN EMBLEM OF UNIVERSAL FRIENDSHIP AND BENEVOLENCE; AND
	INSTRUCTS US THAT, IN THE MIND OF A MASON THOSE VIRTUES
	SHOULD BE AS EXPANSIVE AS THE BLUE ARCH OF HEAVEN ITSELF. 
	PSALMS 8  1&3.


BOAZ:   WHAT BECAME OF THIS PILLAR THAT STOOD ON THE PORCH OF
	   THE TEMPLE?

  o  IT WAS THE NAME OF THE LEFT HAND PILLAR.  IT IS DERIVED FROM
	HEBREW AND SIGNIFIES "IN STRENGTH".  THE PILLAR WAS BROKEN
	INTO PIECES AND CARRIED AWAY TO BABYLON WITH THE OTHER
	TREASURES OF THE TEMPLE BY NEBUCHADNEZZAR 2 KINGS. CH 25:13.


BUILDING OF THE TEMPLE OF SOLOMON:
	   WHAT WAS THE LENGTH OF TIME TAKEN FOR BUILDING OF THE
	   TEMPLE?

  o  HE WAS SEVEN YEARS IN BUILDING IT.  1 KINGS CH 6:37,38.




BUILDING OF THE TEMPLE OF ZERUBBABEL:
	   WHO GRANTED PERMISSION TO THE JEWS TO BUILD THE SECOND
	   TEMPLE?

  o  CYRUS GRANTED PERMISSION TO THE JEWS ONLY.  THE FOUNDATION
	WAS LAID 537 B.C. AND COMPLETED 516 B.C. UNDER ZERUBBABEL
	AFTER RETURNING FROM THE CAPTIVITY.


CABUL:  WHAT DID HIRAM KING OF TYRE RECEIVE FOR HIS PART IN 
	   BUILDING OF THE TEMPLE?

  o  A COUNTRY IN GALILEE WAS GIVEN TO HIM BY SOLOMON AND HE 
	CALLED THEM THE LAND OF CABUL (MEANING DISPLEASING).
	1 KINGS CH. 9:10-13.


CEMENT: WHAT IS THE MYSTIC TIE OF FRATERNALISM?

  o  THE SYMBOLIC TIE THAT BINDS MEN TOGETHER, THE CEMENT OF
	BROTHERLY LOVE.  1 THESSALONIANS CH. 4:9.


COWAN:  WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A COWAN AND AN
	   EVESDROPPER?

  o  AN EVESDROPPER IS AN INTENTIONAL LISTENER.  A COWAN MAY BE
	THEREFORE CLASSED AS AN UNINTENTIONAL LISTENER.  MASONRY HAS
	NO PLACE FOR ANYONE WHO BUILDS THEIR SYMBOLIC WALLS WITHOUT
	THE CEMENT OF BROTHERLY LOVE.  EZEKIEL CH 13  10-15.


CRAFT:  WHAT DOES THE WORD SIGNIFY?

  o  IN SPECULATIVE MASONRY IT SIGNIFIES THE WHOLE MASONIC
	FRATERNITY WHEREVER DISPERSED.  DANIEL CH. 8:25.


CUBIT:  WHAT IS A CUBIT MEASURE?

  o  IN ANCIENT TIMES, IT EQUALED THE LENGTH OF THE ARM FROM THE
	ELBOW TO THE TIP OF THE MIDDLE FINGER, BUT NOW IT IS
	GENERALLY STATED AS 18 ENGLISH INCHES.  1 KINGS CH. 7:15.


DOORS OF MASONIC KNOWLEDGE:
	   WHAT IS ONE OF THE LAMENTABLE WEAKNESSES OF MASONRY?

  o  THAT THE NEWLY INITIATED CANDIDATE IS LEFT TO SHIFT FOR
	HIMSELF.  HE HAS RECEIVED THE KEY, THE DEGREES, AND IT IS 
	NECESSARY FOR HIM TO SEARCH FOR THE RICH FRUITS OF MASONIC
	KNOWLEDGE ALL THE DAYS OF HIS LIFE.  MATTHEW CH. 13  1-17.


DUST RETURN TO EARTH:
	   WHAT DOES THIS REFERENCE REFER TO?

  o  HAS REFERENCE TO MAN, WHEN HE TRAVELS TO THAT UNDISCOVERED
	COUNTRY FROM WHOSE BOURNE NO TRAVELLER RETURNS.
	ECCLESIASTES  CH. 12:7.


FIRST MASTER CRAFTSMAN:
	   WHO WAS THE FIRST MASTER CRAFTSMAN?

  o  IT IS RECORDED IN GENESIS THAT TUBAL-CAIN WAS THE FIRST
	MASTER CRAFTSMAN.  GENESIS CH. 4:22.


GHIBLIM or GIBLIM:
	   WHO WERE THE GIBLIM AT THE BUILDING OF THE TEMPLE?

  o  EXPERT OPERATIVE MASONS.  THE NAME MEANS STONE SQUARERS, WHO
	UNDERSTAND THE SCIENCE OF GEOMETRICAL PROPORTION.
	1 KINGS CH. 5:18.


HAGGAI: WHO WAS THIS PROPHET?

  o  THE PROPHET WHO EXHORTED ZERUBBABEL AND THE PEOPLE TO HURRY
	THE REBUILDING OF THE TEMPLE.


HEAVEN: WHAT IS THE MASONIC ALLUSION TO HEAVEN?

  o  SYMBOLICALLY SPEAKING HEAVEN IS THE FOREIGN COUNTRY INTO
	WHICH THE MASTER MASON SEEKS TO ENTER.  HEAVEN, THE HIGHER
	STATE OF EXISTENCE AFTER DEATH, IS THE FOREIGN COUNTRY.
	2 TIMOTHY CH. 4:18.


HOODWINK:   WHAT IS THE SYMBOLISM OF THE HOODWINK?

  o  IT IS A SYMBOL OF SECRECY, DARKNESS AND SILENCE.  IT IS A
	MYSTICAL DARKNESS IN WHICH THE MYSTERIES OF OUR ART SHOULD
	BE PRESERVED FROM THE UNHARROWED GAZE OF THE PROFANE. 
	GENESIS CH. 3:5.


JACHIN: WHAT IS THE MEANING OF THE NAME JACHIN?

  o  DIVIDING THE NAME INTO SYLLABLES, WE FIND THE FIRST SYLLABLE
	IS JAH, THE NAME OF JEHOVAH IN POETRY, WHILE THE WORD
	"IACHIN" MEANS TO ESTABLISH, THEREFORE LINKING THE TWO
	TOGETHER WE HAVE, "WITH GODS HELP TO ESTABLISH".
	1 KINGS CH. 7:21  2 CHRONICLES CH. 3:17.


JACOB'S LADDER:
	   WHAT IS THE MASONIC SYMBOLISM OF JACOB'S LADDER?

  o  IT IS A SYMBOL OF PROGRESS, ITS THREE PRINCIPAL ROUNDS
	REPRESENTING FAITH, HOPE AND CHARITY, PRESENTING US WITH THE
	MEANS OF ADVANCING FROM EARTH TO HEAVEN, FROM DEATH TO LIFE
	- FROM MORTAL TO IMMORTAL.  GENESIS  CH. 28:12.


LIGHT:  WHAT IS THE SYMBOLISM OF LIGHT?

  o  LIGHT IS THE SYMBOL OF KNOWLEDGE.  IT IS THE ULTIMAT DESIRE
	OF EVERY MASON TO BE WELL INFORMED ON MASONRY.
	GENESIS  CH. 1:3, 4.  MATTHEW CH. 13:16, 17.


LOST WORD: WHAT IS THE TRUE MEANING OF THE LOST WORD?

  o  THE TRUE MEANING OF THE LOST WORD IS DIVINE TRUTH,
	SYMBOLICALLY SPEAKING.  THIS IS WHAT THE OLD WRITERS CLAIM
	HAS REFERENCE TO THE INEFFABLE NAME.  JOHN 1:1.


METAPHORICAL SUPPORTS OF MASONRY:
	   WHAT ARE THE METAPHORICAL SUPPORTS OF MASONRY?

  o  WISDOM, STRENGTH, AND BEAUTY; THE THREE GREAT PILLARS.
	PSALMS 111:10  JOB CH. 12:13.  PSALMS 27:4.


NORTHEAST CORNER:
	   TO WHAT DOES THIS CEREMONY REFER?

  o  IN THIS IMPORTANT CEREMONY THE CANDIDATE BECOMES AS ONE WHO
	IS, TO ALL OUTWARD APPEARANCE A PERFECT AND UPRIGHT MASON,
	THE REPRESENTATIVE OF A SPIRITUAL CORNERSTONE ON WHICH HE IS
	TO ERECT HIS FUTURE AND MORAL MASONIC EDIFACE.
	1 CORINTHIANS  CH. 3:16, 17   MARK CH. 12:10.


PRUDENCE:   WHAT DOES ONE OF THE CARDINAL VIRTUES INSTRUCT?

  o  PRUDENCE, BY WHICH WE ARE INSTRUCTED TO REGULATE OUR CONDUCT
	BY THE DICTATES OF REASON.  2 CHRONICLES  CH. 2:12.


SHEALTIEL:WHO WAS SHEALTIEL?

  o  FATHER OF ZERUBBABEL    EZRA CH. 5:2.





SHIBBOLETH: WHAT IS THE CAUSE OF THIS WORD BEING USED BETWEEN
	     THE GILEADITES AND EPHRAIMITES?

  o  JUDGES CH. 12: 1-6.


STAND TO AND ABIDE BY:
	   WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS OF EVERY MASON?

  o  THE COVENANT OF MASONRY REQUIRES EVERY MASON TO STAND TO
	AND ABIDE BY THE LAWS AND REGULATIONS OF THE ORDER.
	PSALMS 119  1-8.


STONE THAT THE BUILDERS REJECTED:
	   WHAT WAS THE PECULIAR CHARACTERISTIC OF THIS STONE?

  o  IT WAS NEITHER OBLONG NOR SQUARE AND HAS REFERENCE TO THE
	KEYSTONE OR COPESTONE.  ALTHOUGH REJECTED AT FIRST IT WAS
	LATER FOUND TO BE VERY NECESSARY AND IMPORTANT, AND IT WAS
	TO BECOME THE HEAD OF THE CORNER.
	MATTHEW CH. 21:42  MARK CH. 12:10.


TILER:  WHAT IS THE DUTY OF THE TILER?

  o  THE TILER IS DERIVED FROM THE OPERATIVE ART, AS IN OPERATIVE
	MASONRY THE TILER WHEN THE EDIFICE IS ERECTED FINISHES AND
	COVERS IT WITH THE ROOF (OF TILES), SO IN SPECULATIVE
	MASONRY, WHEN THE LODGE IS ORGANIZED, THE TILER CLOSES THE
	DOOR, AND PREVENTS INTRUSION.
	PSALMS 84:10  REVELATIONS CH. 3:20.


TOKENS: WHAT IS THE ESSENTIAL USE OF TOKENS?

  o  SIGNS, TOKENS AND WORDS ARE MARKS BY WHICH MASONS KNOW EACH
	OTHER.  JOB CH. 21:29.


WAGES OF A MASTER MASON:
	   WHAT ARE THE WAGES OF A MASTER MASON?

  o  THE OPERATIVE MASON IN ANCIENT TIMES RECEIVED AS
	COMPENSATION FOR HIS LABOUR CORN, WINE AND OIL  THE FREE AND
	ACCEPTED MASON ON THE OTHER HAND PERFORMS A MORAL WORK AND
	HENCE HIS REWARD IS INTERIOR AND SPIRITUAL.
	COLOSSIANS  CH. 4:1.