Orange Order Teaching
Every new Orange member is personally informed when he joins the Orange Order that he is one of the elect. He is taught this in an introductory catechism:
“What art thou?
From a biblical point of view this teaching is spurious. The Orange Order gives a false hope to every new Orange candidate in regard to his spiritual standing before God. One wonders what biblical authority the Orange think they have for promising every Orangeman that he is “one of the elect” simply on the grounds that he has joined the Lodge? The Bible makes clear that God's elect are all those that born again of the Spirit of God. To teach this to its largely unregenerate Order is dangerous, deceptive and deeply unscriptural. It gives the ungodly a title and a hope that does not belong to them, and offers them a false sense of assurance which Scripture clearly doesn’t allow.
The Orange poem “What are you?” reminds the Orangeman of his supposed favoured standing (particular attention should be paid to the last line):
"Are you a loyal Orangeman and worthy of the name
These are simple questions, to each your answer give
How can the term “elect” be attributed to every Orangemen? Allowing for the central part that the Orange Order has played in moulding the Ulster Protestant pysche over the years, this may explain much of the religious pride that exists among ungodly Protestants. Religious men that possess no intimacy with God are given titles that only the sincere enjoy. This has to have produced an immunity to the true Gospel message.
Not happy with advancing a rogue assurance, it then indiscriminately elevate the candidate to the household of Israel and to the priestly tribe of Levi. How can you compare the sanctified priestly role of the tribe of Levi in the Old Testament to that of the Orange Order in our day.
It is hard to believe that a genuine Christian could accept that a candidate for the Lodge becomes “one of the elect” by joining the Orange Order. Moreover, it is startling to believe that he automatically becomes an Israelite and is then advanced to the priestly “tribe of Levi.” Such teaching is (1) fanciful, (2) a flagrant lie of the devil and (3) deeply unscriptural. No Christian should have any part of this secret body.
Scripture solemnly warns, “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight” (Isaiah 5:20-21).
British Israelism permeates throughout Orange teaching. The Orange Order is of the opinion that it is a chosen people within a chosen nation. This belief is a cancer among the Ulster Protestant people. It engenders cultural pride, something that God judged Israel for in Bible times. Many within the Orders believe they are a superior race. They are better than everyone else. Christians know they are saved by grace not by race. They know that God blesses humility and sees the proud afar off. The Ulster Protestant people (like every other nationality) are separated from God before salvation. They are under the wrath of God. Such a condition is only changed by the new birth.
The Association of Baptist Churches in Ireland carried out a deep enquiry into the biblical credentials of the Loyal Orders and released their findings in an in-depth documemt called: “The Loyal Orders” A Biblical Examination. They concluded: "As believers in the Lord Jesus the brotherhood to which the people of God are bound is the brotherhood of other believers. The fellowship we are to delight in is fellowship with those who have 'fellowship with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ'. (1 John1:3) This was a distinguishing feature of the life of the early church: 'they continued steadfastly in the apostles doctrine, and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers'. (Acts 2:42) This brotherhood and fellowship is dependent upon, and flows from, a personal relationship with Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour and the consequent presence of the indwelling Holy Spirit in the lives of those who know him as such."
They continued: "The importance of this issue cannot be overstated for those who honour the Word of God. If 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 is rightly taught as prohibiting the unequal yoke in business, marriage and ecumenical relationships then balance, consistency and honesty demand that its implications with regard to the Loyal Orders cannot be ignored. The question must be faced, 'Is it right for a child of God to bind himself/herself in a religious association with solemn promises and oaths to those who do not belong to the people of God and who in many cases are godless?' The answer is self evident."
The Association of Baptist Churches in Ireland renounce the Loyal Orders
The Orange Order and British Israelism
British Israelism - the underlying theology of the Loyal Orders