The stations of a masonic lodge
In the Lodge, one finds a multitude of members from different walks of life, different religious backgrounds and different levels of Freemasonry. If one is in the Lodge for what he can get out of it physically or monetary, then he misses the true meaning of Freemasonry and what the Bible has to say about it as stated by David, the beloved of God, father of King Solomon, of whom every Master of a Lodge is representative. We call the East the Throne of Solomon. Yet, there is a deeper meaning found in the scriptures. Let us see what we can find and maybe, just maybe, this will give you an appetite for Bible Study as it relates to Freemasonry. In order to find that deeper meaning, one hsa to search the scriptures from Genesis to Revelations and back again, for the promise of a Saviour (Master Mason) is throughout the Holy Bible, if you believe what you find.
In his 133rd Number of Psalms, verse #3, David talks about the “dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion:” It is a very interesting verse and is interpreted as a prophetic statement, even though David was never considered a prophet. Let us, as Prince Hall Masons explore the deeper reasoning behind this whole chapter, and more particular the 3rd verse. To get better understanding, read the whole chapter, for it is the foundation.
The 133rd Psalms is one of fifteen (15) ‘Songs of Degrees’ that David wrote, and today, in Freemasonry, we associate the fifteen (15) degrees with one of the numerical names of God. They are also associtated with the stairs leading to the middle chamber, consisting of fifteen (15) steps in groups of three (3), five (5) and seven (7), which is explained in exoteric terms already. It is said that the priests (chanters) sung those psalms at the opening of affairs of state as David sat upon his throne. It is good to check out the 119th Psalms and study the numerical worth of the Jewish alphabet.
In writing the psalm (song), David spoke of several things centering on the basis of Freemasonry, brotherhood, as exhorted in his 1st verse, “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!” That is a very profound statement and as you read your Bible, you will see that the translator used an exclamation point, showing the greatness of such a statement. It does not end with the period of passive conclusion, or a comma denoting more to come. It is to be uttered with authority, with great joy, for that is why we gather in the Lodge, to experience the Joy of Brotherhood!
Looking around (in my mind), David sought something tangible to compare this joy with, and probably considered:
1. Gold: The measure of wealth in any country or clime.
2. Silver: The second standard of wealth and is normally linked to gold.
3. Land: The unchanging wealth, for God has made all He is going to make.
4. Stock: The assets of wealthy men and women, whether Real, Live or personal.
Yet, in David’s mind, I would say that none of the above would do in describing the Joy of Brotherhood as supposed to be found in the Masonic Lodge. So, there must be a higher level of comparison. Therefore, let us look upward to He who made all.
Once again, in my own mind, David thought of his own experience of being chosen by God to be His king, and was annointed by Samuel, with the special oil that every prophet carried, along with a vial of wine for medicinal purposes. It was not any old kind of oil or ointment, but that which was sanctified (set aside) for the annointing of things or people in God’s program. In Genesis 28: 10-22, we see Jacob, later to be called Israel, consecrating the stone of Bethel after seeing a vision of the ladder. In this chapter, Jacob gives a vow and a prophecy of a cornerstone, for in verse 22, he says that he will give a tenth (tithes) of all that he has; the prophecy comes two-fold, first as a spiritual blessing from God in verse 14 (the number of a boy-child), depicting the coming of a saviour. In verse 22, again, Jacob makes a promise as well as a prophecy, a physical one, when he talks about the “pillow” becoming a “pillar” in God’s house. This is one of the predictions that the Saviour (Jesus, the Christ) will be considered a ‘cornerstone’ in a building of faith, just as the pillar will become a cornerstone in the Temple of God, later to be called the Temple of Solomon.
Moving on, it says that the special ointment is so plentiful, that it runs down upon the beard even Aaron’s beard. Aaron was Moses’ brother and God’s first ordained preacher, with his vestments made by Moses himself. As a Nazarite, Aaron was not supposed to cut any of his hair, so consequently, in order for oill to run down to his beard, it must have been a lot of oil. Then David said that it flowed on down to the hem of his garment. Unlike the rest of the people, Aaron’s garment was to his ankles, as not part of his body was to be seen except his face and hands. Still, that was not enough to compare with the Joy of Brotherhood that David wanted to share with us through his psalm.
Then David probably thought of dew-drops, a common enough element, but one that was plentiful and most important to the watering of Israel. Little inconsequental dew-drops that by themselves, couldn’t do anything, but by linking together in a spirit of togetherness, a spirit of brotherhood, that same little dew-drop would become an effective element, for there is strength in numbers. In the area of Jerusalem, where did the dew-drops come from that they became so important in describing brotherhood? From the highest mountain in Galilee, Mt. Hermon, as stated in Psalms 133:3, one of the Mountains of Zion.
All the mountains of Israel are called the ‘Mountains of Zion’ as Zion is another name for Israel, or that Spiritual Land of Heaven, where David said, “I will look to the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord who made Heaven and Earth.” But, there were three (3) particular mountains that stood out, and are associated with the stations in a Masonic Lodge, namely, Mt. Zion, Mt. Moriah, and Mt. Olives (Olivet).
Without this Blessing, the Sea of Galilee would not be formed by the streams that fill it. Without this Blessing, the streams would not be formed by the ditches that came from the top of the mountaion. Without these ditches being formed, there would have been no dew-drops falling from above. Without those dew-drops coming together, bonding together as one, a bond of unity, they would have died without making a mark on the world at large. But because David loved the brotherhood that existed in Israel at the time, he showed us the importance of being as brothers should be. And, because the dew-drops came together, ditches were formed; because the ditches came together, streams ran free; because the streams were allowed to flow freely, the Sea of Galilee was formed; because the sea was formed, its overflow of abundance caused the making of the Jordan River. Because the Jordan River flowed, the Dead Sea received the waters from the Jordan, where each dew-drop discovered the “undiscovered country.” One may think that the dew-drop, like life, would end and death would be the final answer.
But, thanks be to the Grand Architect of the Universe, He sent down a Blessing upon the Mountains of Zion, and commanded “even life forever more.” That Blessing was and is, Jesus the Christ. Therefore, the stations represent the three (3) strongest attributes of a Saviour and a Master Mason: Wisdon, to contrive (Genesis 1:1); Strength to support (Genesis 1:2); Beauty to adorn (Genesis 1:3 See also John 1:1-5).
We are in the seventh (7th) day, a day of rest, a day of refreshment, a Sabbath Day. How much longer it will last, we do not know but, it will end one day, and the eighth day will be upon us. Jesus admonishes up to “pray that your flight will not be in the winter (Low Twelve), neither on the Sabbath Day” (A day of rest) when you are not at labor, but at refreshment. The Junior Warden will sound the gavel one day to return to labor.
Therefore, my brethren, the stations of a Lodge are very representative of our Spiritual Self, our Hiram Abif; Jesus, the Christ, who was born, like we were, lived and worked, as we do; was tried as we are (Often tried, never denied); suffered, as we do (Members not paying dues or cooperating in Lodge’s programs) and died as we will and are doing when our Lodges have no programs, no new members, no positive images in our communities and forever criticizing our officers and Grand Officers, or those in authority, kicking or even killing, programs that will benefit all of us. Are you killing Grand Master Hiram Abif?
The three (3) stations, in summary then, are the places where Jesus was tried (Mt. Zion); crucified and buried (Mt. Moriah); and where he prayed (Mt. Olives). The men that stand or sit there, would do well to know who they represent and how and why their stations are immovable jewels. They are the Law, the Prophecy and Grace, by which we will be raised.
But, there is good news on the horizon, for as Jesus was resurrected from an eartly grave, so will Freemasonry be resurrected from the depravation stemming from the lack of support of its members. As Jesus ascended back from whence He came, so shall Freemasonry return to the yesterdays, with old values, but modern attitudes and procedures, with or without those individuals that would dare try to tear it down.