Testimonies from former leading Royal Blackmen
Rev. Canon Brian T. Blacoe (former Deputy Grand Chaplain of the Royal Black Institution), Malcolm McClughan (former Royal Black Lecturer) and David Carson (Chairman of the United Protestant Council) gives their brief reviews of Inside the Royal Black Institution.
Rev. Canon Brian T. Blacoe
The concern of the author in this detailed and comprehensive study of the teaching of the Royal Black Preceptory is to uphold the clarity and integrity of the Word of God in matters of faith. At the heart of his concern are the words of Jesus as recorded in St Mark 7:1-13 in which Jesus contrasts the Word of God with the tradition of the Jewish religion as upheld and taught by the Scribes and Pharisees. Jesus exact words are “Thus you nullify the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And you do many things like that” (verse 13).
It is clear from the teaching of the 12 degrees (the 11 initiatory degrees and the 12th retrospective degree) that lie at the heart of the Royal Black Preceptory tradition that in its interpretation of the text of the Bible in defence of the Reformed and Protestant Faith, there is the interpolation of non-biblical material largely dependent on the teaching of Freemasonry and other sources associated with e.g. the Knights Templar. The inclusion and impact of teaching from these sources negates the Word of God, masking and distorting its truth.
To the honest enquirer this book will be a challenge that will test his or her understanding of Scripture and the application of its teaching in the ‘Black’ tradition in claiming to uphold the Protestant Faith.
Rev. Canon Brian T. Blacoe is former Deputy Grand Chaplain of the Royal Black Institution. He resigned from the order on biblical grounds a numbers of years ago.
As a lecturer in the Royal Black Institution, I thought it was important to study the Scriptures connected to the degrees. You can imagine my surprise, when I found that some of the things quoted in the degrees were not to be found in the Bible.
I asked my fellow lecturers and Church Ministers who held senior office, trying to establish where these unscriptural parts of the degrees came from. Their answer was to tell me that it was true, these parts were not in the Bible, but not to worry about where they came from, as they were a traditional part of the degrees.
If you want to find out more, read this excellent book by Paul Malcolmson
Malcolm McClughan is a former Royal Black Lecturer. Being so, he was required to memorize all the Black degrees up until the Red Cross degree. He also lectured in the final Grand Charge. He left the Royal Black Institution on biblical grounds a numbers of years ago.
The Royal Black Preceptory is a very familiar organisation in Ulster Loyalist circles, as well as in places like Scotland and Liverpool. What is not known, except to those in the organisation, is its history and secret rituals. In fact, probably very few of its membership know that it was outlawed by all the Orange Grand Lodges until the beginning of the last century.
The author of this work, Paul Malcomson has lifted the veil of secrecy that has hitherto kept the history and rituals of this organisation hidden from public knowledge since its formation. He has done a great service to Evangelical Protestantism by exposing the secret rites at the heart of, what many consider to be, the most respectable and Christian of the Loyal Orders. There will be many, among them Evangelicals, who will object to this book even being written. However, surely it is far better to bring the rituals of this order out into the light of day for all to see, and where Christians can test it with the light of Scripture.
Mr Malcomson, in this publication, has done a great deal of detailed research so that all the information contained in this book is backed up with the sources from which it was extracted. Mr Malcomson proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that the Black degrees have their roots in the Roman Catholic Knights Templar. He demonstrates that the Knights of Malta, the Jesuits and the Freemasons use very similar rituals.
To most Ulster Protestants, the Blackmen, as they are commonly called, are the most well ordered and well presented of all the Loyal Orders. Members of the organisation claim it is the most scriptural. But is this the reality? As one studies the various degrees one is struck by the misuse of Scripture, the misapplication of Scripture and the contravening of Scripture.
I would strongly encourage every Protestant, especially those who claim to be Evangelical, to carefully, and with an open mind, read this book. They will find that things are not as what they appear to be. Having then read the book, and in the light of Holy Writ considered its contents, they must then decide where they take their stance. They must not allow a sense of misplaced loyalty make them disloyal to their Lord and Master whom they claim to love and serve.
The battle cry of the Reformers was “Sola Scriptura.” It is therefore the responsibility of all who call themselves Protestant to make sure that whatever they do or whatever organisations they are involved with do not contravene biblical precept. History teaches us that as denominations and organisations depart from the Word of God they lose their strength and ability to withstand the machinations of their enemies.
David Carson is Chairman of the United Protestant Council. In October 2001 the Royal Black made a representation to United Protestant Council (an evangelical umbrella group embracing different Reformed organisations within the UK) to affiliate with it. After a thorough enquiry into the practices and teaching of the Black (which took years) this application was declined on biblical grounds. As Chairman, Mr Carson supervised this in-depth investigate.
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