I was talking to a friend the other day who is a Freemason. He was joking about the meetings that are full of old men who do nothing but sit around and play cards. I asked him why then he was a Mason, he said “networking.”
I told him my church didn’t allow members to be Freemasons and he said he had never heard of that. I thought this was pretty much standard but the more I dug around, the more I found that many churches don’t have an opinion on the subject.
If your church as a live-and-let-be attitude toward secret organizations, you should urge them to take another look.
Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod View of Freemasons
“Pastors and laypeople must avoid membership or participation in any organization that in its objectives, ceremonies, or practices is inimical to the Gospel of Jesus Christ or the faith and life of the Christian church.” It is because tenets and practices of Freemasonry conflict with the biblical Gospel of Jesus Christ that our church from its very beginning has held that membership in this organization conflicts with a faithful confession of this Gospel (1).
Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Church and Freemasons
We contend that Masonic beliefs do interfere with a Christian’s beliefs. For example, when the Lambskin (or White Leather Apron) is presented to a candidate, he is told, “You were presented with the Lambskin… because the lamb has in all ages been deemed an emblem of innocence. He therefore who wears the Lambskin … as a badge of a Mason, is thereby continually reminded of that purity of conduct and life which is so essentially necessary to his gaining admission into the celestial lodge where the supreme Architect of the universe presides.”
That is the heart of the Masonic blasphemy. That is a denial of Christ’s gospel. It makes the sacrifice of the Lamb of God unnecessary to take away the sin of the world (3).
Roman Catholic View of Freemasons
The <New Catholic Encyclopedia> states, “Freemasonry displays all the elements of religion, and as such it becomes a rival to the religion of the Gospel. It includes temples and altars, prayers, a moral code, worship, vestments, feast days, the promise of reward and punishment in the afterlife, a hierarchy, and initiative and burial rites” (2).
Other churches such as the Anglican/Episcopal, Baptist, Presbyterian and Methodist churches have also addressed the issue but sometimes in un-united and/or unconvincing ways, leaving it to their members to make the conscious choice.
The Freemasons are a closed society that isn’t forthright with their beliefs or traditions. If you’re confronted with an invitation to join, I think it best to err on the side of caution. I think the Roman Catholic Church said it best: “Those interested in joining a men’s club should consider the Knights of Columbus instead.”