1) Why were the FC wages corn, wine, and oil? (please explain and give biblical reference for the answers)
- The answers to the first question can be found in the Old Testament. This obviously comes from the FC degree. The FC were paid according to the law, given to Moses by God and enshrined into all aspects of their Jewish customs and culture. Solomon was a Jewish King, and a descendant of Abraham, Isaac, Musa, etc…and therefore was going to be aware of and observant of those customs, traditions and Laws handed down to him from his ancestors.
- Deuteronomy 14:23 – And thou shalt eat before the LORD thy God, in the place which he shall choose to place his name there, the tithe of thy corn, of thy wine, and of thine oil, and the firstlings of thy herds and of thy flocks; that thou mayest learn to fear the LORD thy God always.
- 2 Chronicles 31:5 – And as soon as the commandment came abroad, the children of Israel brought in abundance the firstfruits of corn, wine, and oil, and honey, and of all the increase of the field; and the tithe of all things brought they in abundantly
- Genesis 27:28 – Therefore God give thee of the dew of heaven, and the fatness of the earth, and plenty of corn and wine.
- Numbers 18:12 – All the best of the oil, and all the best of the vintage, and of the grain, the first-fruits of them which they give unto Jehovah, to thee have I given them.
How does this (particularly the corn) relate to the 1st or EA degree? (please explain and give biblical references as well.
The answer to the second question can be found by first reviewing the Book of Ruth, looking specifically to Naomi’s instructions to Ruth about how to get food for the family. This is important, because it shows that Naomi was well aware of the ancient custom among her people of caring for the sick, elderly and the needy. This reference in the 1st degree, taken from our discussion of the Book of Ruth, ties in a coupl of different ways…First, it serves as foreshadowing for the upcoming second degree lesson of the middle chamber…”glean corn from the fields” is almost like Naomi and Ruth know that they need both physical and spiritual nourishment, that the corn can symbolize. Secondly, this story lays the foundation or “ground floor” for the story of King Solomon and the building of KST by highlighting the wisdom and goodness found in Boaz, one of King Solomon’s direct ancestors. So this is part of the layer upon layer of meaning that can be found “hidden” in plain sight in Masonry! The gleaning custom is laid out and further illustrated the in the following biblical references (In some you will see that even the Son of God, follows in this ancient and powerful custom, tradition and law):
- Deuteronomy 23:25 – When thou comest into the standing corn of thy neighbour, then thou mayest pluck the ears with thine hand; but thou shalt not move a sickle unto thy neighbour’s standing corn.
- Ruth 2:14 – And Boaz said unto her, At mealtime come thou hither, and eat of the bread, and dip thy morsel in the vinegar. And she sat beside the reapers: and he reached her parched corn, and she did eat, and was sufficed, and left.
- Ruth 2:2 – And Ruth the Moabitess said unto Naomi, Let me now go to the field, and glean ears of corn after him in whose sight I shall find grace. And she said unto her, Go, my daughter.
- Matthew 12:1 – At that time Jesus went through the grain fields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick some heads of grain and eat them.
- Luke 6:1 One Sabbath Jesus was going through the grain fields, and his disciples began to pick some heads of grain, rub them in their hands and eat the kernels.
- Mark 2:23 – One Sabbath Jesus was going through the grain fields, and as his disciples walked along, they began to pick some heads of grain.
For a really good read on this topic, I would definitely recommend that you follow this link to read about Corn, Wine, and Oil.
Now For Puzzler #8
Brethren, How many of us have looked critically at our lives and gave an accounting for where we are? How many of us are truly living our lives like that point within a circle, bounded by two parallel lines? I coul probably go on to ask someting like, “what does the point wthin a circle symbolize?” and no doubt I would be swamped with answers. But what I would like to do is go one step further, to delve deeper and look beyond the esoteric meaning. Here are the questions for today’s puzzler:
- The point within a circle has a very specific masonic meaning. Is there any biblical or historical reference to this ancient symbol that should be known by us today?
- We all know that masonically, the parallel lines represent the Holy Saints John, but why are lodges dedicated to th memory of them today? Were there ever lodges dedicated to the memory of any other figures?
- What does it mean to “square the circle”? How does one use the folowing formula to “square the circle”? a2+b2=c2
Key Words: Geometry Lesson
Answer to Question 8.