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Joseph Smith and Masonry Church video


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7 hours ago, TheTanakas said:

Masonry teaches the Celestial Lodge is the hope for muslims, hindus, bahais,
who don't accept Jesus as Savior.

This is a nice sentiment, but there is nothing in Blue Lodge Freemasonry that teaches this.

 

3 hours ago, Storm Rider said:

I suspect the same for Joseph. He may have known Masons, but that relationship should not cause one to assume he had any knowledge or degree of understanding of Masonry at that point. 

As a Freemasons, Joseph Smith and several other church leaders formed the Nauvoo lodge in 1842.  Shortly thereafter the temple endowment (as we know it) was introduced.  There were earlier endowments in the 1830's in Kirtland, but these were not the fully realized forms of the endowment that were brought to Salt Lake.  

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51 minutes ago, OGHoosier said:

Joseph Jr.'s parents are the only sources which speak of Masonic symbolism on the plates, so far as I am aware, though other elements of their descriptions of the plates were attested by Harris, Whitmer, and Charles Anthon (referring to the etching of the plates which Harris presented to him.) See Bradley, The Lost 116 Pages: Reconstructing the Book of Mormon's Missing Stories, pp. 20-34 and 47-52.  

This is fascinating, I was unaware of this.  I'll check out Bradley's book.

52 minutes ago, OGHoosier said:

The theory that Joseph Smith co-opted Masonry into the church in the second half of his ministry is no longer tenable. It is clear that the astronomical and compass/square symbolism which we associate with Masonry (though in ancient times it has been found in other religious contexts, including early Christianity) has been part of Joseph Smith's prophetic ministry since the beginning.

Freemasonry, like the temple uses symbolism to teach principles.  The similarities between the two go far beyond the square and compass, and it is clear Joseph Smith deliberately and irrefutably chose to incorporate parts of Freemasonry into the temple endowment.  The bigger question is why are there so many specific similarities?  It's possible that this was part of a restoration of something much older than either the modern temple or Freemasonry and has been brought forth in its fullness as the temple endowment.  This is a common assumption by some LDS folks, and one that I used to espouse.  I think the answer is really much simpler. 

Freemasonry's use of symbolism is very deep and presses upon the candidate and officers involved in degree work, important truths bound by obligations and penalties that help shape the betterment of oneself and mankind.  Joseph Smith chose to use much of that same deep symbolism to impress upon church members the importance of sacred covenants that are made within the temple.  Because the temple endowment is a teaching tool, it often changes.  Unlike Freemasonry, if part of the temple rite loses meaning or becomes irrelevant it is changed to meet the learning needs of the students.  Much like any good learning environment, the teaching must be adapted to the student.  The temple is not an immovable "tradition" like Freemasonry, rather it is a place of spiritual learning that is adaptable based upon modern revelation.     

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5 minutes ago, Urloony said:

Freemasonry, like the temple uses symbolism to teach principles.  The similarities between the two go far beyond the square and compass, and it is clear Joseph Smith deliberately and irrefutably chose to incorporate parts of Freemasonry into the temple endowment.  The bigger question is why are there so many specific similarities?  It's possible that this was part of a restoration of something much older than either the modern temple or Freemasonry and has been brought forth in its fullness as the temple endowment.  This is a common assumption by some LDS folks, and one that I used to espouse.  I think the answer is really much simpler. 

Freemasonry's use of symbolism is very deep and presses upon the candidate and officers involved in degree work, important truths bound by obligations and penalties that help shape the betterment of oneself and mankind.  Joseph Smith chose to use much of that same deep symbolism to impress upon church members the importance of sacred covenants that are made within the temple.  Because the temple endowment is a teaching tool, it often changes.  Unlike Freemasonry, if part of the temple rite loses meaning or becomes irrelevant it is changed to meet the learning needs of the students.  Much like any good learning environment, the teaching must be adapted to the student.  The temple is not an immovable "tradition" like Freemasonry, rather it is a place of spiritual learning that is adaptable based upon modern revelation.     

I agree with your second paragraph for the most part. The symbolic paradigm has been a part of the gospel for a long time, as long as there have been apocalyptic visions, divine parables, allegorical prophetic accounts, etc. It serves us well as a vehicle communicating truths suited to the spiritual level of the recipient. I also agree with regard to the flexibility of the rites, being first and foremost divine tools designed to bring us to God, not preserve "dead works" that are no longer effective. 

However, to me, the presence of Masonic emblems (or, to be more clear, emblems which we associate with Masonry) firmly situates the symbols of Masonry as ancient. The compass and square were associated with sealing at least by the time Moroni sealed up the plates, and probably since the time the twin interpreters were set in their spectacles. I don't know about the antiquity of the rest of Freemasonry, but those are now certified ancient, if we believe the plates to be of ancient origin. 

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54 minutes ago, Urloony said:

As a Freemasons, Joseph Smith and several other church leaders formed the Nauvoo lodge in 1842.  Shortly thereafter the temple endowment (as we know it) was introduced.  There were earlier endowments in the 1830's in Kirtland, but these were not the fully realized forms of the endowment that were brought to Salt Lake.  

I was addressing the time period mentioned above with the 116 pages that went missing. 

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2 hours ago, Urloony said:

This is a nice sentiment, but there is nothing in Blue Lodge Freemasonry that teaches this.

You might not have seen the parts of the Masonic prayer I mentioned earlier.

Strengthened in his labors here by faith in God, and confident of expectation of
immortality, he has sought admission to the Celestial Lodge above.

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4 hours ago, pogi said:

I think that is beautiful.  Thanks to the restoration and proxy work, they indeed have hope!

What do you teach?  Are they hosed?

I am aware of the proxy work of D&C 138 but tend to believe Alma 5:24-25, 28 and Alma 34:32-35
more.

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1 hour ago, OGHoosier said:

However, to me, the presence of Masonic emblems (or, to be more clear, emblems which we associate with Masonry) firmly situates the symbols of Masonry as ancient. The compass and square were associated with sealing at least by the time Moroni sealed up the plates, and probably since the time the twin interpreters were set in their spectacles. I don't know about the antiquity of the rest of Freemasonry, but those are now certified ancient, if we believe the plates to be of ancient origin. 

I completely agree that the square and compass are ancient symbols.  Some Freemasons contend that the craft is as old as time, dating back at least to Noah and perhaps even earlier.  Some might argue as far back as Adam.  This is not necessarily so, but speaks to your point of their antiquity.  The square and compass also appear in Facsimile No. 2, figure 7, "...revealing through the heavens the grand Key-words of the Priesthood."    What's even more interesting is that this portion of the hypocephalus was not restored by Joseph Smith, but appears as he found it and date to at least 500 BC.  The commonality of ancient symbols such as the all seeing eye, star constellations, the cardinal direction of Masonic lodges and church temples, the use of the pentagram (although technically not part of Freemason rites), all point to possible connections between Freemasonry and the temple endowment.  If that were the only similarities, I would grant them as coincidence.  Those symbols are the tip of the iceberg.  There are things I've learned about Freemasonry I would only understand because of my temple experience and vice versa.  One of the reasons I became a Freemason was to experience what the early saints and Joseph Smith and so many early church leaders experienced and see for myself what the similarities and differences may be and understand their intertwined relationship, which has proven to be significant.       


 


 

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37 minutes ago, TheTanakas said:

You might not have seen the parts of the Masonic prayer I mentioned earlier.

Strengthened in his labors here by faith in God, and confident of expectation of
immortality, he has sought admission to the Celestial Lodge above.

I saw it.  😃  The prayer is not part of Blue Lodge Freemasonry rites, it’s a funeral prayer.  Also, I’m not sure how one extrapolates that the Celestial Lodge above is reserved for those who don’t accept Christ from the reading of that prayer.

In Freemasonry, the Celestial Lodge above is a symbol of heaven for all Freemasons regardless of their faith.  The book  of scripture found on the altar of a lodge is dependent upon the faith of the members who attend.  In the West, typically it’s the Bible.  If a lodge’s membership is Buddhist, Muslim, or Jewish the scripture would be different.  Additionally, if a candidate is completing degree work, an Entered Apprentice for example, they can choose whatever book of their faith they want.  If you’re LDS you could choose the Book of Mormon or the D&C to take your obligations upon.  The purpose is to make the obligations binding to the candidate according to their faith.  Religion in general is not discussed nor is one’s personal religious views imposed directly or indirectly on other Freemasons.  

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1 hour ago, TheTanakas said:

I am aware of the proxy work of D&C 138 but tend to believe Alma 5:24-25, 28 and Alma 34:32-35
more.

It is not an either/or.  They are not mutually exclusive passages.  

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