The Star in the East

Reverend George Oliver, 1825

The Star in The East

George Oliver, Year of CLEE,

Domestic Chaplain to the Right Honorable Lord Kensington;

Author of the “Antiquities of Freemasonry”

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Between Friends...

Sacred Brotherhood of Man...Fatherhood of God...

The Internal...

to seek the light within the heart...

When two or three are gathered...in thy name

God is speaking to us as in unity...

The Pilgrims Path...

Discover a narrow path guiding the way towards the truth...

The Word...

Our Rule and Guide to a well found Faith...

With Thoughtful Prayer...

Come as a child of your own free will to discover wisdom..

God is Speaking...

When we meet; congregate with unity of faith and promise...

But those who hope in the Lord...

...they will soar on wings like eagles; run and not grow weary...

Brothers whom trust...

...gain a sacred truth...about our Elder Brother Emmanuel

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A Brother Mason In Alaska

 
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THE

STAR IN THE EAST,

SHEWING

 THE ANALOGY WHICH EXISTS

 BETWEEN THE

LECTURES OF FREEMASONRY,

THE

MECHANISM OF INITIATION INTO ITS MYSTERIES

AND THE

Christian Religion.

BY

George Oliver, Year of CLEE,

Domestic Chaplain to the Right Honorable Lord Kensington;

Author of the “Antiquities of Freemasonry”

 London:

Printed for Geo. B. Whittaker,

Ave-Maria Lane

1825

Preface

      WHEN a publication on a novel subject has issued from the press, the motives of the Author, and the question of expediency, are usually investigated with some degree of eagerness. I know not how far it may be considered necessary to state the numerous and complicated motives which have unitedly contributed to originate the following essay; but I may perhaps be permitted to enumerate three reasons, each amply sufficient to decide the question of expediency, and to illus­trate my design in laying this work before the Public.

      And first we are informed, that the unsanctified bigotry of a superstitious creed has again proscribed Freemason­ry, in some of the continental nations, as an institution decidedly hostile to the interests of Christianity; and under the sanction of an " ever-valid" bull of Pope Clement [01], has unbarred prison gates of the Inquisition, and loosened all its active engines to apprehend, and punish by torture and death, the harmless professors of a science, which inculcates the chief doctrines and morality of Christianity; and assumes, as an universal axiom, the broad tenet of unrestrained union and brotherly love.

      The second reason is derived from the general affectation, which seems to pervade the uninitiated, of believing that our institution was established for the purpose of- sensual conviviality; and hence it is ranked merely on a level with the societies of " Odd Fel­lows," and "Good Fellows;" "Catchy Clubs;" and " Smoking Clubs;" and that therefore our professions of intel­lectual pursuits are altogether falla­cious.

      My third reason is of a personal nature, At the conclusion of Ch. 6, of "The Antiquities of Freemasonry," I offered some observations on the intimate and necessary connection which subsists between Masonry and Christianity.  These remarks appear to have created a sensation in the minds of certain-brethren, which I did not anticipate; I have received seve­ral admonitory letters, whose common object is to impugn this doctrine, which I consider the fairest gem that Masonry can boast. As all my disqui­sitions were intended to establish this alliance, I have, in the following pages, attempted to-place the matter: beyond the reach of dispute or contradiction And I flatter myself to have satisfactorily proved that Freemasonry is not only a vehicle of religion in general, but of Christianity in particular;

     To render this little work more generally acceptable, I have interwoven in its pages a considerable portion of our lectures; distinguishing the several degrees in which each. portion is delivered in our Lodges; which will a, ford an unobjectionable answer to those cavillers, who will not be persuaded chat any salutary benefits are derivable from the practice of Freemasonry.

      It may be necessary to add, that have here described our science as it is practiced in a Lodge which is indebted to my exertions for its origin, and over which I presided during many years, If my information on the subject be incorrect, it proceeds not from a want of assiduity in the research, for I have bestowed upon it much anxious atten­tion: and I may be allowed to express my own conviction, that those who are persuaded of the non-existence of reli­gion in the science of Freemasonry, have not given the subject that mature consideration which its importance demands, For surely it must be a question of some magnitude to the community at large, whether religion be the basis of an institution which comprehends every description of mankind : which is patronized by crowned heads, and diffuses itself through every rank and station ; and I think that a minute comparison between the spirit of religion, and the spirit of Masonry, would be sufficient to convince any ingenuous mind of their indissoluble connection. The whole Jewish Ritual was but the per­fection of Masonry, exhibited in types and emblems of spiritual things. The sublime mark or token of Ezekiel,* which was impressed on the foreheads of the Jewish masons to preserve them amidst the threatened destruction, was doubtless that significant emblem which we now call the masonic LEVEL, The most sublime ordi­nances of Christianity are shadowed in our institution under types and illustrious symbols. In a word, the whole system of ancient religion, whether genuine or spurious, was little else than primitive masonry under various modifications; and, consequently, it contained every thing that was conducive to human happiness both tempo­ral and eternal. For the sake of the institution generally, and for the sake of its members in particular, I should grieve to be convicted of error; be­cause if religion be discarded from the illustrations of Freemasonry, it can possess no charms for a rational being.

     Objections may perhaps arise, but none, I trust, of sufficient weight to invalidate the theory, I conclude, however, in the words of Tully, "refellere sine pertinacial, et refelli sine iracundia, parati sumus." Or “We are prepared to refute without obstinacy and to be refuted without temper”

 [01] *The following extract from this bull will exhibit nature of the persecutions to which our brethren are now subjected.

“Clement Bishop, servant of the servants of God, to all the faithful of Christ, health and apostolical benediction.

“ Placed (unworthy as we are) by the disposal of the divine clemency, in the eminent watch-tower of the apostleship, &c. &c., it has come to our knowledge, even from public report, that certain societies, companies, meetings, assem­blies, clubs or conventicles, commonly called de Liberi Muratori, or Freemasons, or by what­soever other name the same in different languages are distinguished, spread far and wide, and are every day increasing; in which, persons of what­soever religion or sect, contented with a kind of affected show of natural honesty, confederate together in a close and inscrutable bond, accord­ing to laws and orders agreed upon between them ; which likewise with private ceremonies, they enjoin and bind themselves, as well by strict oath taken on the Bible, as by the imprecation of heavy punishments, to preserve with inviolable secrecy.

 “We therefore, revolving in our minds the great mischiefs, &c., by the plenitude of the apostolical power and by this our present ever-valid constitution, we do condemn and prohibited same societies, &c. &c. We will more­over and command, That as well bishops and superior prelates, and other ordinaries of particu­lar places, as the Inquisitors of heretical pravity universally deputed, of what state, degree, condi­tion, order, dignity or pre-eminence soever, pro­ceed and inquire, and restrain and coerce the same, as vehemently suspected of heresy, with con­dign punishment: for to him and each of them, we  hereby give and impart free power of proceeding, inquiring against, and of coercing and restraining with condign punishments, the same transgressors, and of calling in, if it shall be necessary, the help of the secular arm, &c.

 “Dated from Rome, at St. Mary's the Greater, in the year of the incarnation of our Lord 1738, the 4th of the calends of May, in the eighth of our Pontificate.”

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Chapter 1

Introductory Remarks; showing the absolute and immutable connection between Masonry and Religion...

Chapter 2

Testimonies extracted from Masonic Writers in support of this Truth.

Chapter 3

Christianity was the True Religion from the Fall of Man to the Establishment of the Jewish Dispensation; even the temporary system revealed to Moses, was, in every material point, typical of the perfected Church of Jesus Christ; and therefore speculative Masonry being early united with Faith in Christ, has, in all ages, retained the benefits which it derived from this dignified alliance.

Chapter 4

Every event alluded to in the historical part of the Masonic Lectures, has a direct reference to Jesus Christ, or the Christian religion.

Chapter 5

The morality of Masonry is precisely the same as that of Christianity.

Chapter 6

The mechanism of Masonry is symbolical of its connexion with the Christian Religion.

Appendix

Introductory Remarks; showing the absolute and immutable connection between Masonry and Religion...

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