Shibboleth: A Templar Monitor, by George Cooper Connor, , at sacred-texts.com
One mode of entrance is thus accomplished. Silence reigns.
Another mode of entrance is thus secured. Silence reigns.
Plaintive music touches the heart of the neophyte while gazing at the solemn observance of Prayer and Meditation. The memorial of the betrayal before him, he laments the disloyalty of the one so fully trusted. Thrilled by the surroundings, he craves admission, that he, too, might seal his faith, never to be renounced.
His allotted year of Penitence had ended, but his need of penitence had not, since all men err, and erring need repentance.
Alas! men are born to die! Can man be too frequently reminded of this.
Why should the humble follower of Jesus loiter in his footsteps, or fall by the wayside? Is not Jesus sufficient? He is, and should temptation assail; should misfortune befall; should all the world seem to forsake the true Soldier of Christ, he will nevertheless remain faithful to his vows. And he will never bring disgrace upon himself, or reproach upon the name of Him under whose banner he has enlisted.
The casting of lots was an ancient custom, and is frequently mentioned in the Scriptures. Several methods of casting the lots were practiced. Solomon says, Proverbs xvi: 33, "The lot is cast into the lap," That is, the pebble is cast into the bechif,lap, or bottom of an urn. Perhaps a literal rendering of the verse quoted above will cast some light on that one method.
"In a lot-vase the lots are shaken in all directions; nevertheless, from the Lord is their whole decision,judgment."
The Order of the Temple has adopted a method of "casting lots" peculiar to itself.
And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)
Men and brethren, the scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus.
For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry.
Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out.
And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood.
For it is written in the book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishopric let another take.
Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us,
Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection.
And they appointed two, Joseph called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias. And they prayed, and said, Thou, Lord, which knowest the hearts of all men, show whether of these two thou hast chosen,
That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place.
And they gave forth their lots; and the lot fell upon Matthias; and he was numbered with the eleven apostles. Acts i: 15-26.
When Judas betrayed his Lord and Master his light became darkness in the college of Apostles. When the divine wisdom selected Matthias to fill the vacancy that light was restored. Sin puts out the divine light in the heart, but it is restored when the heart elects to serve the Master unto death.
It was the custom of the Grand Master to put his arm about the neck of the initiate, and thus make him a Templar. Anciently kings conferred knighthood in the same way.
The word Accolade is front ad, to, and collum, the neck. The embrace has long passed out of use, and the single blow on the candidate's left shoulder with the blade of the sword has been adopted.
It is generally held that the one blow with the blade of the Sword had its origin in the single blow which the slave of the Romans received at his manumission.
Such Grand Commanderies as have discarded the Baldric are excused from the ceremony of its investiture.
The investiture of the Sword is an imposing and an imperative ceremonial.
The investiture of the Spur is left to the discretion of the Grand Commanderies, and of Commanders where Grand Commanderies have taken no action thereon.