Royal Black use of human remains

Masonic 'Old Room of Reflection'

As we have seen, like every related neo-Templar Order the Black uses actual human remains in its ceremonies to accentuate its hidden mysteries. From this initial Black degree, to the dizzy heights of the lecturing conferences the skull and cross-bones are very much to the fore in Black meetings. Even those Roman Catholics who engage in the superstitious veneration of relics would wince at some of the ghoulish practices that exist within the Royal Black Institution. Notwithstanding, we hear the constant forceful denunciations of the idolatries of Rome from Black platforms, yet they themselves partake in some of the most alarming procedures performed in the name of Christ. No wonder the Bible strongly warns: “Thou that abhorrent idols, dost thou commit sacrilege? (Romans 2:22).

How can the Royal Black Institution, with any credence, oppose the idolatry of the Roman Catholic Mass when it employs such repugnant practices? How can the Black justify such duplicity? How could they imagine that the Black in anyway accords with Scripture or is in keeping with the laudable principles of the Protestant Reformation? Colossians 2:8 admonishes, “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments (or constitution) of the world, and not after Christ.”

Throughout the ancient world the skull and cross-bones were engraved in caves associated with pagan mystery rites and on the walls of pagan temples. This imagery serves to enlighten us as to the various traditions that existed amongst these ancient groupings. Top Masonic historian and author J.S.M. Ward in his book An Interpretation of our Masonic Symbols alludes to the skull and cross-bones, saying, “In Mexico these emblems were clearly associated with a mystery rite, and are found carved on the walls of temples, and on the stone yokes used in the ceremonies, as well as being sprinkled throughout the pages of the Aztec and Maya codices.”

It is in the ancient mystery religions that we find the origin of the veneration and use of such relics in religious worship. In the pagan world the remains of the deceased leader were always treated with superstitious reverence. Rev. Alexander Hislop says in The Two Babylons, “Egypt was covered with sepulchres of its martyred god; and many a leg and arm and skull, all vouched to be genuine, where exhibited in the rival burying-places for the adoration of the Egyptian faithful. Nay not only were these Egyptian relics sacred themselves, they consecrated the very ground in which they were entombed.” He further states, “it is evident that the worship of relics is just a part of those ceremonies instituted to commemorate the tragic death ofOsiris (or Nimrod)” (p. 179).

Wherever we find paganism practised, we find the religious use and adoration of the relic. It is no surprise therefore to find the same within the Roman Catholic tradition. Alexander Hislop continues, “Nothing is more characteristic of Rome than the worship of relics” (p
. 176). Upon the opening of a Roman Catholic Chapel or a Monastery, bones are placed beneath it to superstitiously consecrate and sanctify it as ‘holy’. With Rome’s homage to her dead saints came the abominable practice of venerating the bones of her martyrs and saints. Such pagan practices have been made possible by the plundering of innumerable unknown graves and tombs by the Roman Catholic Church throughout the generations. Evangelical authority Loraine Boettner declares, “The Roman devotion to sacred relics cannot be looked upon as one whit better than the same misguided devotion paid to relics in Pagan temples” (Roman Catholicism p. 292).

We recommend The Secret Teachings of the Masonic Lodge by John Ankerberg and John Weldon

Ancient Templars

Over the centuries, the symbol of the skull and cross-bones has been closely connected with the Knights Templar. Such a symbol fascinated an Institution which was saturated with a mixture of Roman Catholicism and Occultism. It is from this mystical source that these emblems have spread throughout Christendom. It seems like the Jesuits modelled themselves upon these Crusading knights. Many medieval European tombs of the Knights Templar are marked by the symbol of the skull and cross-bones. Evidence of their use, can be traced back to 1307 AD when the French King Philippe IV began a suppression of the Templars. He rounded them up at this time and interrogated them about their rites.

The existence of secret ceremonies involving a human head of some kind became the pre-eminent subject running through the records of the French Inquisition. When the Knights Templar were brought before the authorities in France for examination they admitted practising their initiations and rituals in front of some type of human skull. Some of the Templars who were questioned told of a strange ritual wherein the Templars worshipped something called “Baphomet.” The word seemed to be associated with an apparition of a bearded head. Some of the knights told of séance-type rituals in which the bearded head would appear out of nowhere and give instructions to the secret worshippers.


Forrest Jackson’s comprehensive research into the Templar movement, called The Baphomet in History and Symbolism, concluded, “We found indisputable evidence for the charge of secret ceremonies involving a head of some kind. Indeed the existence of such a head proved to be one of the dominant themes running through the Inquisition records.”

Roman Catholic priest (and historian) Augustus Arnold elucidates, “A gold box of relics, which the Templars used to kiss, according to the custom of the Catholics, was what gave origin to the story of the Baphomet” (History and Philosophy of Freemasonry and other Secret Societies p. 72).

These mystical knights were condemned by the Church of Rome, being rejected as sorcerers, magicians and secret adepts and alchemists. King Philippe IV of France viewed the Templars as heretics and therefore a danger to the welfare of the Roman Catholic Church. As a result, he ordered the extermination of this grouping. The most famous of those killed was their leader Jacques de Molay. Despite some fanciful modern-day stories to the contrary, the Templar cause disappeared from the public gaze for a number of centuries.

It is interesting then that the Templar concept lay dormant for many years until a group of Scottish Masons loyal to the Scottish royal house – the Stuarts – exiled in France became fascinated with these disgraced knights during the mid-1800s. In fact, they are proudly heralded as the influence that inspired the rise of the modern-day Masonic Templar movement, the Royal Black Institution and the “Protestant” Knights of Malta and many other chivalrous secret societies. These brotherhoods used the general Templar theme as their blueprint, and patterned their beliefs and practices after them. Nonetheless, it is hard to understand why so-called Protestant secret societies would look to Templarism for their spiritual roots and closely mimic the unseemly practices of these heretics – the most prominent of which is their parallel use of human remains in their secret initiations.

A book every interested observer should read on this subject is Hidden Secrets of the Eastern Star by Cathy Burns. It goes into extraordinary detail and shows the meaning and true origins of the teaching and practices of the order. See attached link:


The gross superstition embodied within the use of bones by the Royal Black is not one bit better than the idolatry of the occult tradition or the extremes of the Roman Catholic Church. It exposes the deception and inconsistency with which the Black Institution has been plagued with from its foundation. Sadly, whilst outwardly portraying Protestantism, the Black inwardly practises paganism. Of course true evangelical Christians reject all idolatry out of hand, whatever label is put on it. The true believer also takes his eyes off the grave and the perishable body and turns them upon the eternal God.

Dr Woods in Our Priceless Heritage (p. 169) ably affirms, “The right way to honour a good man who has passed away, is not to venerate one of his bones, but to emulate his virtues in the service of God and our fellow men.”

John Calvin wrote a tract called An Admonition Concerning Relics in which he condemned the use, devotion and veneration of the same by the Roman Catholic Church. He argued, “What was at first a foolish curiosity for preserving relics has degenerated into abominable idolatry. The great majority of the relics are spurious. It could be shown by comparison that every apostle has more than four bodies and every saint two or three … the worship of any relics, of whatever kind they be, whether genuine or spurious, is execrably idolatrous … The best thing, indeed would be as I mentioned at the outset, if, among us who profess the name of Christ, this heathenish custom were abolished … the pollution and defilement which they occasion ought not on any account to be tolerated in the church.”

Calvin’s tract concludes with an admonition to the believer: “Let everyone, then, be on his guard, and not allow himself to be led along like an irrational animal, and as if he were incapable of discerning any way or path by which he might be guided safely … Henceforth no man will be able to excuse himself by pretending ignorance.” This is powerful guidance coming from one of the Reformation’s greatest champions. It is counsel that should be considered by every Blackman who cherishes his Protestant identity. There can be little dispute that this Reformed tract exposes the Black devotion to relics and their weird fixation with the subject of death.

No Christian organisation, Church or grouping needs to desecrate human remains from a grave and place them at the front of a meeting in order to impress the reality of mortality. The Scriptures are sufficient for that and are the God-ordained means that the Almighty uses effectively to reveal this reality. Only the Holy Spirit through the Scriptures has the ability to successfully enlighten the dull understanding of man and unveil divine truth. This has been tried and tested throughout the centuries and has consistently accomplished in the hearts and minds of sinful men (regardless of race, gender or age) more than anything a thousand elaborate secret society rituals could ever accomplish. Scripture contains everything necessary to explain with clarity and power these great truths and has been the only effectual tool to open the eyes of mortal man to the same.

Jesus said in John 17:17, “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.”

Romans 10:17 declares, “faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

Psalm 119:130 affirms, “The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.”

The Word of God is the effective, time-honoured means by which God unveils His heart. Whilst the Black makes references to the Scriptures during this ceremony, this is for the purpose of reinforcing its chilling macabre ritualistic practices and hidden beliefs. Like all the cults, the Black misinterprets and misapplies Scripture to suits its hidden theology. God’s Word gives absolutely no credence to these murky innovations. Rather than bringing men closer to Christ, the Black rituals surely pushes them further away. Rather than triggering faith, conviction and hope, the Black meetings engender fear, shock and unease. The eerie atmosphere existing within these meetings unnerves the entrant and is certainly not an environment conducive for the Holy Spirit to work.

The Coffin

A coffin, or its representation, is placed before the candidate in his initiation, thus maintaining the morbid atmosphere. The lecturer then draws the attention of the aspirant to this receptacle and relates it to the death of Joseph. This is the overriding focus of the degree and serves to keep death as the central feature of this ceremony. Not surprisingly, the mood remains cold and eerie keeping the candidate in an unsettled state. The Black lecture asserts:

“This is a representation of the coffin in which the bones of Joseph were placed to be carried up to the Promised Land. It reminds us that the bodies of our departed brethren shall sleep in their hallowed receptacles, until our Great Grand Master shall order the trumpet of the Lord to sound and the angel shall set one foot upon the land and the other upon the sea and declare time to be no more.”

The Black Institution carefully and continually surrounds the memory of Joseph with gloom, sorrow and sadness. However, as we have seen earlier, this is a total misrepresentation of the memory and scriptural account of Joseph. The Institution selectively portrays his life in its teaching as a morbid and dark existence thus justifying its secret doctrine and exonerating its superstitious practices. Nowhere in the teaching of the Black do we learn of the effective ministry of Joseph nor do we hear of his victorious testimony. They ignore the fact that although wronged, betrayed and forsaken, he is never once heard to question God or the destiny upon his life. He refused to let circumstances and people deflect him from the positive plan and purpose that God had for his life.


Whilst the Bible tells us that “It is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting: for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart” (Ecclesiastes 7:2), this is not suggesting that we should artificially invent a house of mourning as the Black does. This is especially the case when there is no loved one or friend to genuinely mourn. This Scripture is simply telling us that when death is brought across our path men should be careful to consider their own mortality. This is indeed profitable. However, it is not the grave that we should get fixated upon, but the One who gives victory over the grave – the Lord Jesus Christ. Christianity is built around the victory of Christ over death, hell and the grave. It is a religion of faith, hope and joy. Jesus says, in John 11:25, “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.”

The new birth experience delivers a sinner from the reality and penalty of spiritual death. This brings succour to the believer and lifts his eyes from the natural to the spiritual, the temporal to the eternal. Jesus said in John 10:27-28, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.” In John 8:51 Christ said to the Pharisees, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death.” Life rather than death is the portion and expectation of the believer. The memory left by Joseph is sweet and encouraging and we should venture to replicate it.

We would recommend a revealing book written by David W Daniels – Should A Christian Be A Mason:

Biblical analysis of the Royal Black degree

All the Black Degrees

The Royal Black Institution consists of eleven degrees, as follows: –

(1) Royal Black degree – exposed and biblically examined
(2) Royal Scarlet Degree – exposed and biblically examined
(3) Royal Mark degree – exposed and biblically examined
(4) Apron and Royal Blue degree – exposed and biblically examined
(5) Royal White degree – exposed and biblically examined
(6) Royal Green degree – exposed and biblically examined
(7) Gold Crown degree – exposed and biblically examined
(8) Gold Star and Garter degree – exposed and biblically examined
(9) Crimson Arrow degreee – exposed and biblically examined
(10) Gold Link and Chain degree – exposed and biblically examined
(11) Red Cross degree – exposed and biblically examined

The Institution also possesses a final retrospective degree, which is essentially an overview of the 11 degrees that the candidate has traversed.

Red Cross Grand Charge – exposed
Purchase direct: Inside the Royal Black Institution

Other Info

Purchase direct: Inside the Royal Black Institution

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).

A book for Blackmen to seriously consider by Cecil Andrew of Take Heed Ministries.

The “Protestant” Knight of Malta exposed
The solid and unrelenting opposition of GOLI to the RAP and the RBI
The history of the Royal Black Institution
The history of the Black degrees

For more information read Freemasonry: The Invisible Cult by Jack Harris