Before any candidate for the mysteries, symbols, tenets, and secrets of Freemasonry can be admitted to a Lodge he is required to make a solemn oath by which he pledges secrecy and assumes the obligation of faithfully conforming his life to the teachings of the Order. There is nothing profane or immoral in the obligations assumed, nor is there the slightest elements of levity in the procedure. Hence this oath can not be regarded as the slightest perversion of Holy Scripture or in any sense objectionable or sinful. Neither is the objection sometimes given that the oath is administered before the secrets are made known reasonable or just.

Certainly an obligation, covenant, and promise, exacted previous to the divulging of the specialties of an Order wholly characterized by benevolent intent is not only free of reasonable objection, but fair and honourable. The oath of a Mason is administered with solemn rites symbolizing and emphasizing the profound and meaningful character of the obligations being assumed. While these rites are peculiar to Masonry, they are no different in their import and meaning from ceremonies and rites common in administering oaths in other spheres of human relations.

The Masonic oath is attended with the imprecation of certain penalties in the event of violation. There can be no oath without the elements of both attestation and execration. All these explanations apply to the oaths required of Masons in each succeeding step of advancement in the Masonic Order. — ( Exodus 22:11 - Deuteronomy 6:13 - Joshuah 14:6-9 - Genesis 14:21-24 )

See also: Tyler's Oath

Biblical References

Exodus 22:11

Then shall an oath of the LORD be between them both, that he hath not put his hand unto his neighbor's goods; and the owner of it shall accept thereof, and he shall not make it good.

Return to Top

Deuteronomy 6:13

Thou shalt fear the LORD thy God, and serve him, and shalt swear by his name.

Return to Top

Joshuah 14:6-9

6 Then the children of Judah came unto Joshua in Gilgal: and Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite said unto him, Thou knowest the thing that the LORD said unto Moses the man of God concerning me and thee in Kadeshbarnea. 7 Forty years old was I when Moses the servant of the LORD sent me from Kadeshbarnea to espy out the land; and I brought him word again as it was in mine heart. 8 Nevertheless my brethren that went up with me made the heart of the people melt: but I wholly followed the LORD my God. 9 And Moses sware on that day, saying, Surely the land whereon thy feet have trodden shall be thine inheritance, and thy children's for ever, because thou hast wholly followed the LORD my God.

Return to Top

Genesis 14:21-24

21 And the king of Sodom said unto Abram, Give me the persons, and take the goods to thyself. 22 And Abram said to the king of Sodom, I have lift up mine hand unto the LORD, the most high God, the possessor of heaven and earth, 23 That I will not take from a thread even to a shoelatchet, and that I will not take any thing that is thine, lest thou shouldest say, I have made Abram rich: 24 Save only that which the young men have eaten, and the portion of the men which went with me, Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre; let them take their portion.

Return to Top

This page is adapted from the Glossary at Phoenixmasonry — Used with permission.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License