ENCYCLOPEDIA OF FREEMASONRY AND ITS KINDRED SCIENCES
by ALBERT C. MACKEY M. D.
Jesus in Latin comes from the Greek word Iesous, pronounced ee-ay-soos, and this in turn is from the Hebrew Joshua or Jeshua or perhaps more properly Yeshua, meaning “Jehovah is salvation” or “He will save.” These latter Hebrew words are shortened forms of Jehoshua, pronounced as yeh-ho-shoo-ah, “Jehovah saves.” Christos, the Greek word for the anointed or consecrated is equivalent to Messiah and Messias from the Hebrew word Mashach, meaning to anoint with oil. The word Christos suggested in sound the somewhat similar term Chrestos, signifying benign qualities as in First Epistle of Peter (ii, 3), “If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is (chrestos) gracious.” This expression was applied by their enemies to Christians as being followers of Chrestos. An early Latin writer on the Church, Tertullian, 193 to 217 A.D., pointed out that this word given ignorantly in enmity was actually expressive of benevolence.
Jesus Christ, whose life and teachings form the foundation and structure of Christianity, was born at Bethlehem, about five miles south of Jerusalem, the chief city of Palestine. His birth chronologically is now generally assigned to a few years prior to the beginning of the modern era, or about 4-5 B.C., later estimates placing the time of the event differently to what was formerly accepted.
From the Bible we learn that Jesus was the son of Mary, a virgin of Nazareth, in the ancient province of Galilee. She was betrothed to Joseph, a carpenter, and during a visit made by them to Bethlehem for enrollment, Jesus was born in a stable and cradled in a manger because of the over-crowded condition of the local inn. Here came shepherds and the Magi, wise men from the East, and their publicly proclaimed reverence for the babe as the King of the Jews endangered the family with the reigning monarch and they fled to Egypt after the circumcision of the child. King Herod died and Joseph and Mary with Jesus returned to the home at Nazareth. From the record of the Scriptures we note that the boy listened to instruction at the Temple and that he “advanced in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.” That the trade of Joseph was adopted in due course is suggested by the visit to Nazareth during the public ministry of Jesus when the gossiping spectators said “Is not this the carpenter?”
From the year 4 B.C. to 30 A.D. is estimated in the Stevens-Burton Harmony of tile Gospels Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York, 1912) as the period from birth to crucifixion with the actual ministry between three and four years. However, the length of ministry has also had other estimates based on the probable number of passovers in that period and accordingly as these were three or four the results figure out respectively as two and a half or three and a half years of public life. Baptized by John, as Luke tells us (iii, 23), “And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age.” Then followed forty days in the wilderness and later the public preaching to the people with the private instruction of the disciples, urging repentance and faith upon all. In public as well as religious affairs the new teaching was not acceptable to the officials, civil and ecclesiastic.
The leaders, the priests and the Roman Governor, prepared to put Jesus on trial. Betrayed by Judas, taken before the high priest for examination and then to the Roman Governor, condemnation was speedy and crucifixion promptly followed. Resurrection after burial with appearances to the disciples and the ascension to heaven are told by the biblical narrative. A popular Life of Christ, written by Dean F. NV. Farrarg London, 1874, many following editions, is b admirable for study, and there are excellent discussions upon allied topics in James Hastings’ Dictionary of the Bible (Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York, 1914), and in similar works. Ernest Renan’s Life of Jesus, an English translation from the twenty-third edition (Little, Brown and Company, Boston, 1917), less orthodox than the work of Farrar, is scholarly and independent, while H. G. Enclow’s Jeurish View of Jesus, Macmillan, New York, 1920, presents a viewpoint of decided interest and importance.
The existence of the Essenes, a Jewish brotherhood of the time of Christ, not mentioned in the Bible but recorded by other authorities and having suggestive resemblance to features of Christianity, in fact the latter has been described as a popularized Essenism, brings up the often debated question of Jesus being an Essene. Brother Dudley Wright’s book Was Jesus an Essene (Power-Book Company, London, 1908) submits concisely considerable information though many authors reject claims made for the membership of Jesus in the organization which came to an end in the second century. Essenes were tillers of the soil, esteemed ceremonial purity—bathing and white garments were featured, special food was prepared by priests and eaten solemnly together, marriage was forbidden and every sensual enjoyment deemed sinful, all property was held in common, and three years’ preparation or probation was necessary before full initiation into this monastic order (see Essenes).
JETZIRAH, BOOK OF
In many Lodges, especially among the Germans, where it is called Mitglieder Zeichen, a jewel is provided for every member and presented to him on his initiation or affiliation. It is to be worn from the buttonhole, and generally contains the name of the Lodge and some Masonic device.
JEWEL OF AN ANCIENT GRAND MASTER
A Masonic tradition informs us that the jewel of an ancient Grand Master at the Temple was the square and compass with the letter G between. This was the jewel worn by Hiram Abif on the day which deprived the Craft of his invaluable services, and which was subsequently found upon him.
See Jewels of a Lodge
See Jewels of a Lodge
JEWELS OF A LODGE
Every Lodge is furnished with six jewels, three of which are movable and three immovable. They are termed jewels, says Brother Oliver, because they have a moral tendency which renders them jewels of inestimable value. The movable jewels, so called because they are not confined to any particular part of the Lodge, are the Rough .Ashlar, the Perfect Ashlar, and the Trestle-Board. The Immovable Jewels are the Square, the Level, and the Plumb. They are termed Immovable, because they are appropriated to particular parts of the Lodge, where alone they should be found, namely, the Square to the East, the Level to the West, and the Plumb to the South. In the English system the division is the reverse of this. There, the Square, Level, and Plumb are called Movable Jewels, because they pass from the three officers who wear them to their successors.
Jewels are the emblems worn by Maçonic officers as distinctive badges In Masonic Facts and Fict (page 12), Brother Sadler is of the opinion that in the early days no jewels were worn, even by the Grand Master himself. He points to the portrait of Antony Sayer, the Grand Master, 1717, who is represented wearing a plain leather apron, but no jewel of any kind. The same may be said of Montgomery, the Grand Guarder. Brother Sadler also quotes a most important Minute of the Grand Lodge as follows:
24th June, 1727. Resolved Nem. Con. that in all private Lodges and Quarterly Communications and general meetings Ma(ste)r and Wardens do wear the Jewels of Masonry hanging to a white ribbon (viz.) that the Ma(ste)r wear the Square, the Senior Warden the Level, the Junior Warden the Plumb Rule.
Brother W. Harry Rylands says this points to the idea of wearing jewels instead of using them.
For the purpose of reference, the jewels worn in Symbolic Lodges, in Chapters, Councils, and Commanderies are here appended.
- 1. Symbolic Loges
- W:. Master, a square.
- Senior Warden a level.
- Junior Warden a plumb.
- Treasurer, crossed keys.
- Secretary crossed pens.
- Senior Deacon, square and compass, sun in the center.
- Junior Deacon, square and compass, moon in the center
- Steward, a cornucopia.
- Tiler, crossed swords.
- The jewels are of silver in a subordinate Lodge, and of gold in a Grand Lodge. In English Lodges, the jewel of the Deacon is a dove and olive branch.
- 2. Royal Arch Chapters
- High Priest, a miter.
- King, a level surmounted by a crown.
- Scribe, a plumb-rule surmounted by a turban.
- Captain of the Host, a triangular plate inscribed with a soldier.
- Principal Sojourner a triangular plate inscribed with a pilgrim.
- Royal Arch Captain, a sword.
- Grand Master of the Veils, a sword.
- The other officers as in a Symbolic Lodge. All the jewels are of gold, and suspended within an equilateral triangle.
- 3. Royal and Select Councils.
- T. I. Grand Master, a trowel and square.
- I. Hiram of Tyre, a trowel and level.
- Principal Conductor of the Works a trowel and plumb.
- Treasurer, a trowel and crossed keys.
- Recorder, a trowel and crossed pens.
- Captain of the Guards, a trowel and sword.
- Steward, a trowel and crossed swords.
- Marshal, a trowel and baton.
- If a Conductor of the Council is used, he wears a trowel and baton, and then a scroll is added to the Marshal’s baton to distinguish the two officers.. All the jewels are of silver, and are enclosed within an equilateral triangle.
- 4. Commanderies of Knights Tempter.
- Em’t Commander, a cross surmounted by rays of light.
- Generalissimo, a square surmounted by a paschal lamb
- Captain-General, a bevel surmounted by a rooster.
- Prelate a triple triangle.
- Senior Warden, a hollow square and sword of justice.
- Junior Warden, eagle and flaming sword.
- Treasurer, crossed keys.
- Recorder, crossed pens.
- Standard-Bearer a plumb surmounted by a banner.
- Warder, a square plate inscribed with a trumpet and crossed swords.
- Three Guards, a square plate inscribed with a battle-ax.
- The jewels are of silver.
In the lectures of the Second and Third Degrees, allusion is made to certain moral qualities, which, as they are intended to elucidate and impress the most important moral principles of the Degree, are for their great value called the Precious Jewels of a Fellow Craft and the Precious Jewels of a Master Mason. There are three in each Degree, and they are referred to by the Alarm. Their explanation is esoteric.