The Rubbish of the Temple

In the Entered Apprentice Degree, we learn that at the building of King Solomon’s
Temple, there was no cutting of the materials on site. All of the materials were
prepared in some other location, brought to the site, and assembled without the aid of
any tool of iron. The timbers and woodwork were cut and shaped in the forests of
Lebanon, and then conveyed to the temple. Likewise, the stones were cut and
numbered in the quarries before being shipped to the building site. We further learn,
every part was fitted with such exactness, that the finished building had the
appearance of the handiwork of God, and not of human hands.

Later in our travels to the East, we discover that the body of our Grand Master, Hiram
Abiff, was buried in the rubbish of the temple. If all the materials of the temple were
prepared off site, and if there was no cutting of any materials on the site, and if the
materials fitted with such exactness, then where did the rubbish of the temple come
from?

I think that anyone who is employed in the building trades or anyone who has built
any project in their home, will realize that . materials get damaged. In the process of
shipping, in the process of storage on or off site, and in the process of assembly,
sometimes pieces get mishandled and broken. Thus, these pieces find their way to the
rubbish heap.

What is the lesson here for us as Masons? Every time we get a new candidate, and he
enters our lodge, he is beginning his journey from the forest, or the quarry to the
building site, where we hope he will become an integral part of our temple. If we
mishandle that candidate, if we set a bad example, if we do not live by our teachings,
if we do not teach the candidate the importance of our craft, if we do not show him
that he is important, then when or if, that candidate becomes a Master Mason, the
chances are he will receive his dues card, walk out our door, and we will never see
him again. If this happens to a candidate, or to a brother of our lodge, then that man
just found his way to the rubbish heap of our temple. We need to be careful to handle
and form each candidate and member with the utmost care. This is a responsibility of
all Masons.

I think this story alludes to a more important lesson. God asked Amos what he saw,
and Amos replied “A plumb line”. Then God proceeded to tell Amos that He was
going to set a plumb line in the midst of His people and measure them, and that if
they were not standing upright, He was going to cut them off. We are taught to stand
upright before God. We are taught that we are traveling on the level of time to an
undiscovered country. We are taught to act on the square. We are taught that someday
we will become part of a temple, not made by hands, eternal in the heavens. If within
our journey through life from the forest, or the quarry to that house not made by
hands, if within that journey we do not pay attention to our teachings, help one
another, or follow the examples laid down by the Grand Master of the Universe in
that great book of Revelation, then when we arrive at that building site, we will be
damaged goods, and will not fit. Thus my brethren, we would end up on the rubbish
heap of that temple, a place where God has assured you, you do not want to be.

About leader

District Deputy Grand Master Saratoga-Warren District 1998-2000; Grand Lodge Leadership Services Committee; Leadership Development Course Coordinator; Vice Chairman Grand Master's Educational Task Force; Vice Chairman Grand Lodge Child ID Committee; District Deputy Grand High Priest 14th Capitular District; Grand Master of the 1st Veil 2010; Grand Master 2nd Veil 2011; Grand Master 3rd Veil 2012 Grand Royal Arch Captain 2013 Grand Principal Sojourner 2014 Grand Captain of the Host 2015 Warren County Historical Society Board of Trustees; Queensbury Masonic Historical Society Charter Member; State Chairman Lodges & Buildings Committee Deputy Grand Master's Advisory Committee
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