Secret Societies

The Perils of the Secret Societies—The Lord's injunction, “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers,” refers not only to the marriage of Christians with the ungodly, but to all alliances in which the parties are brought into intimate association, and in which there is need of harmony in spirit and action.... Ev 617.4

The Lord declares through the prophet Isaiah: “Associate yourselves, O ye people, and ye shall be broken in pieces; and give ear, all ye of far countries: gird yourselves, and ye shall be broken in pieces; gird yourselves, and ye shall be broken in pieces. Take counsel together, and it shall come to nought; speak the word, and it shall not stand: for God is with us. For the Lord spake thus to me with a strong hand, and instructed me that I should not walk in the way of this people, saying, Say ye not, A confederacy, to all them to whom this people shall say, A confederacy; neither fear ye their fear, nor be afraid. Sanctify the Lord of hosts Himself; and let Him be your fear, and let Him be your dread.” Isaiah 8:9-13. Ev 617.5

There are those who question whether it is right for Christians to belong to the Free Masons and other secret societies. Let all such consider the scriptures just quoted. If we are Christians at all, we must be Christians everywhere, and must consider and heed the counsel given to make us Christians according to the standard of God's Word.... Ev 618.1

When we accepted Christ as our Redeemer, we accepted the condition of becoming laborers together with God. We made a covenant with Him to be wholly for the Lord; as faithful stewards of the grace of Christ, to labor for the upbuilding of His kingdom in the world. Every follower of Christ stands pledged to dedicate all his powers, of mind and soul and body, to Him who has paid the ransom money for our souls. We engaged to be soldiers, to enter into active service, to endure trials, shame, reproach, to fight the fight of faith, following the Captain of our salvation. Ev 618.2

In your connection with worldly societies, are you keeping your covenant with God? Do these associations tend to direct your own mind or that of others to God, or are they diverting the interest and attention from Him? Do they strengthen your connection with the divine agencies, or turn your mind to the human in place of the divine? Ev 618.3

Are you serving, honoring, and magnifying God, or are you dishonoring Him and sinning against Him? Are you gathering with Christ or scattering abroad? All the thought and plan and earnest interest devoted to these organizations, has been purchased by the precious blood of Christ; but are you doing service for Him when uniting yourselves with atheists and infidels, men who profane the name of God, tipplers, drunkards, tobacco devotees? Ev 618.4

While there may be in these societies much that appears to be good, there is, mingled with this, very much that makes the good of no effect, and renders these associations detrimental to the interests of the soul.... Ev 619.1

I ask you who take pleasure in these associations, who love the gathering for indulgence in wit and merriment and feasting, Do you take Jesus with you? Are you seeking to save the souls of your companions? Is that the object of your association with them? Do they see and feel that there is in you a living embodiment of the Spirit of Christ? Is it manifest that you are a witness for Christ, that you belong to a peculiar people, zealous of good works? Is it manifest that your life is governed by the divine precepts, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind,” and, “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself”?.... Ev 619.2

Those who cannot discern between him that serveth God and him that serveth Him not, may be charmed with these societies that have no connection with God, but no earnest Christian can prosper in such an atmosphere. The vital air of heaven is not there. His soul is barren, and he feels as destitute of the refreshing of the Holy Spirit as were the hills of Gilboa of dew and rain. Ev 619.3

At times the follower of Christ may by circumstances be compelled to witness scenes of unholy pleasure, but it is with a sorrowful heart. The language is not the language of Canaan, and the child of God will never choose such associations. When he is necessarily brought into society that he does not choose, let him lean upon God, and the Lord will preserve him. But he is not to sacrifice his principles in any cases, whatever the temptation. Ev 619.4

Christ will never lead His followers to take upon themselves vows that will unite them with men who have no connection with God, who are not under the controlling influence of His Holy Spirit. The only correct standard of character is the holy law of God, and it is impossible for those who make that law the rule of life to unite in confidence and cordial brotherhood with those who turn the truth of God into a lie, and regard the authority of God as a thing of nought. Ev 620.1

Between the worldly man and the one who is faithfully serving God, there is a great gulf fixed. Upon the most momentous subjects,—God and truth and eternity,—their thoughts and sympathies and feelings are not in harmony. One class is ripening as wheat for the garner of God, the other as tares for the fires of destruction. How can there be unity of purpose or action between them? “Know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.” “No man can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one, and love other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.”—Should Christians Be Members of Secret Societies? pp. 3-10. (1892). Ev 620.2

Clear-cut Separation—In the evening I met Brother _____ and told him I had something for him from the Lord. He said, “Why not let me have it now?” I was quite weak, but he lived in _____, ten miles from the school building which was to be my home. So I arose and read to him fifty pages of letter pages, in reference to the office, and also particular ones working in the office. [Reference is made to a communication from which the preceding article is drawn.] Ev 620.3

I spoke ... plainly and in clear lines in reference to his past work and what a loss it had been to the office. His connection with Free Masonry had absorbed his time and blunted his spiritual perception. His mind, his thoughts, had been upon this body, this association; and there were infidels, winebibbers, and every class. And he was bound up with these secret organizations. There was only one thing he could do—sever his connection with them and be wholly on the Lord's side; for he could not possibly serve God and mammon. Ev 621.1

He said, “I receive the testimony; I shall heed its instruction.”—Manuscript 17, 1892. Ev 621.2

Brother _____ was in a perilous condition, like a man about to lose his balance and fall over a precipice. I knew what nice work it is to deal with human minds, and I was thankful when the time came when it was safe for me to present to him his danger. The Lord of heaven would have us fear to judge one another; as finite, erring beings we should be suspicious of ourselves, we should fear lest we offend God in bruising the souls of His children. They are the purchase of the Son of God, bought by His own precious blood, and are not to be accused or oppressed by word or act, for the Lord will stand in their defense. Ev 621.3

Wednesday I was drawn out to speak of the principles upon which we should deal with minds and direct them in the right way. Many in the world have their affections on things that may be good in themselves, but their minds are satisfied with these things, and do not seek the greater and higher good that Christ desires to give them. Now we must not rudely seek to deprive them of what they hold dear. Reveal to them the beauty and preciousness of truth. Lead them to behold Christ and His loveliness, then they will turn aside from everything that will draw their affections away from Him.—Letter 23a, 1893. Ev 621.4

A Message of Commendation—I am very thankful to our gracious heavenly Father that He has given you strength through His imparted grace to cut yourself loose from the Free Mason lodge and all that relates to the society. It was not safe for you to have any part with this secret order. Those who stand under the blood-stained banner of Prince Immanuel cannot be united with the Free Masons or with any secret organization. The seal of the living God will not be placed upon anyone who maintains such a connection after the light of truth has shone upon his pathway. Christ is not divided, and Christians cannot serve God and mammon. The Lord says, “Come out from among them, and be ye separate, ... and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, and I will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be My sons and My daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.”—Letter 21, 1893. Ev 622.1

Deceptions Through Secret Societies—The world is a theater; the actors, its inhabitants, are preparing to act their part in the last great drama. With the great masses of mankind, there is no unity, except as men confederate to accomplish their selfish purposes. God is looking on. His purposes in regard to His rebellious subjects will be fulfilled. The world has not been given into the hands of men, though God is permitting the elements of confusion and disorder to bear sway for a season. A power from beneath is working to bring about the last great scenes in the drama,—Satan coming as Christ, and working with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in those who are binding themselves together in secret societies. Those who are yielding to the passion for confederation are working out the plans of the enemy. The cause will be followed by the effect. Ev 622.2

Transgression has almost reached its limit. Confusion fills the world, and a great terror is soon to come upon human beings. The end is very near. We who know the truth should be preparing for what is soon to break upon the world as an overwhelming surprise.—Testimonies For The Church 8:27-28 (1904). Ev 623.1