Chapter 2

The Mystery

     Early in the 18th century, significant changes were made in the Masonic Lodge’s degree system and in its Laying of the Cornerstone ceremony. In the previous chapter I submitted evidence that the man responsible for these sudden alterations was Isaac Newton. The next step is to determine if they are what I claim: clues to finding Freemasonry’s greatest treasure, a hidden Bible code.

     Where do we begin? The starting point is the number three, as in Freemasonry’s 3rd degree, the beginning of the speculative ascent up the institutional ladder that ends in the 33rd degree. In the Bible, 3 is a symbol of perfection. In the Christian faith, the number 3 is a symbol of the Trinity. As a pure hypothetical, let’s assume that the Masonic 3rd degree is a clue that leads to a Bible code that has something to do with the Trinity, the most sacred and protected doctrine in the Christian faith.

    Out of all the world’s thousands of religions, it is frequently argued that the Christian doctrine of the Trinity, the belief that God is three Persons in one Being, is the most overtly religious and anti-scientific teaching there is. It is a well-known fact that Newton hated it with a passion. Almost everyone, even those willing to defend it to the death, agree that the Trinity is completely illogical, but, as is often the case in religion, claims that make the least amount of sense are frequently held up as God’s greatest mysteries. The Church encourages true believers to celebrate the Trinity for the simple reason that it defies logic and is beyond scientific comprehension. Rarely do the faithful give any serious thought to the possibility that it could be just flat out wrong.

     Next to the Cross, the Trinity is the most ubiquitous article in the Christian world. Tens of thousands of churches and religious institutions proudly bear the word “Trinity” in their names, and the phrase “In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,” is used in weddings, funerals, baptisms, dedications, confirmations, and just about everywhere else. Singularly the most defining statement in the Christian religion, it is indelibly etched in the Western consciousness, in most cases from infancy.


     But what if it isn’t true, and what if Newton found a code in the Bible that proves it isn’t true?

     Though the Nicene Trinity was an unquestioned article of faith in Newton’s day, it had no place in his universe. It is therefore both ironic and tragic that, though Newton found biblical evidence that disproves the Nicene Trinity, he could not, out of fear of Church retaliation, share it with the world. In the end he was left with no other choice than to entrust the code to a secret brotherhood for safekeeping, encrypting clues to finding it in the Masonic Laying of the Cornerstone ceremony.


The Laying of the Cornerstone

     Going back centuries, even before the time of Newton, any large and significant construction project the Masons embarked upon was typically preceded by a ceremony associated with the setting of the building’s first stone, its cornerstone. Usually a large solid block of granite, the cornerstone was a symbol of strength and endurance, treasured qualities that Masons believed characterized both the Brotherhood and the project under construction.

     We have on record an account of two original cornerstone ceremonies, one in England and one in Scotland. The first occurred before the Laying of the Cornerstone ritual was rewritten by the London Grand Lodge. The second appears to have been conducted by Masons who chose to remain unaffiliated with the Grand Lodge who kept the old rituals.

The English Ceremony

     James Anderson, in his Constitutions, reported a simple ceremony conducted on March 19, 1721:


     “The Bishop of Salisbury went in an orderly procession, duly attended, and having leveled the first stone, gave it two or three knocks with a mallet, upon which the trumpet sounded, and a vast multitude made loud acclamations of joy, when his Lordship laid upon the Stone a Purse of 100 Guineas, as a present from his Majesty for the use of the craftsmen.

The Scottish Ceremony

     The occasion was the Laying of the Foundation Stone of the New Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh by the Earl of Cromarchy, Grand Master of Scottish Masons, on Aug. 2, 1738. The description of this event, written in 1804 by Alexander Lawrie in his History of Free Masonry, describes a simple, almost primitive ceremony:


     “When the company came to the ground, the Grand Master, and his brethren of the free and accepted Masons, surrounding the plain of the foundation hand in hand; and the Grand Master-Mason, along with the press [representatives] of the Managers of the Royal Infirmary, having come to the east corner of the foundation where the stone was to be laid, placed the same in its bed; and after the Right Honorable and the Lord Provost had laid a medal under it each in their turns, gave three strokes upon the stone with an iron mallet, which was succeeded by three clarions of the trumpet, three huzzas, and three claps of the hands.” From the website:

The London Grand Lodge Ceremony

     Let’s now compare these two older rituals with the rewritten London Grand Lodge Laying of the Cornerstone ceremony as recorded in the Illustrations of Masonry written by William Preston in 1772. Preston immigrated to England from Scotland and became a member of London Grand Lodge. He would have had access to James Anderson’s second edition of the Constitutions which featured several significant revisions. Following is the London Grand Lodge ritual:


"The Worshipful Master then said,

     'May corn, wine, and oil, and all the necessities of life abound among men throughout the world, and may the blessings of the Supreme Architect be upon their undertaking.'

"The Worshipful Master then received from the Junior Warden the cornucopia containing corn and dropped the corn upon the cornerstone saying:

      'May the health of the workmen employed in this undertaking be preserved to them, and may the Supreme Architect bless and prosper their labors.’

"The Junior Warden then took the wine from the table and presents it to the Senior Warden, who pours it on the cornerstone saying:

     ‘May plenty be showered down upon all people of earth, and may the blessings of the bounteous giver of all things attend their philanthropic undertakings.’


"The Junior Warden then took the oil from the table and poured it upon the cornerstone saying:

     ‘May the Supreme Ruler of the world preserve all people in peace, and vouchsafe to them the enjoyment of every blessing.’

"The Worshipful Master then said:

     ‘May corn, wine, and oil and all the necessities of life abound among men throughout the world, and may the blessings of the Supreme Architect be upon this undertaking."



     As you can see, the London Grand Lodge version of the Laying of the Cornerstone ceremony is radically different from both of the older rituals. The key distinction is the replacement of ancient recitations and actions with the dedication of corn, wine and oil. Another distinction is that the older ceremonies were loud and raucous, conducted by men with bulging muscles and calloused hands. In contrast, the Grand Lodge ceremony was somber, even quasi-religious, led by high-brow men wearing powdered wigs and dainty apparel. It should come as no surprise that many lodges dominated by operative Masons rejected the new version, choosing instead to break away from the London Grand Lodge and retain their old rituals.


The Schism

     Why did the London Grand Lodge, knowing that the rewording of The Laying of the Cornerstone ritual would offend the rugged stoneworkers who represented the vast majority of Masons, insist that it be rewritten? What was so special about the corn, wine, and oil sequence that these three common elements became the singular focus of the lodge’s most sacred ceremony?

     Clearly, there had to be some hidden meaning or significance to the corn, wine, and oil that was not apparent to the uninitiated. This suggests that only a small handful of the highest ranking members of London Grand Lodge, those who had attained the rank of thirty-third degree, were privy to the secret of the code.

     The decision to rewrite the old rituals was made without any vote or input from the greater Masonic membership. When the new rituals were formally introduced by the Mother Lodge, there was so much resistance among the laity that it resulted in a major split, in an organization that even in that day had become justifiably famous for its unity and spirit of fraternal brotherhood.

     One can easily understand the anger and confusion of the members who were not part of the Mother Lodge. They were unable to fathom why it was necessary to change what for generations had been a manly celebratory ritual into something that, at least on the surface, appeared to be embarrassingly genteel and of no great significance.

     The only stated justification for changing the ceremony in such a drastic way was to bring Masonic rituals into compliance with the modern Newtonian understanding of the universe. But Masons outside the inner leadership circle of the Mother Lodge had to have been asking themselves how the dedication of corn, wine, and oil accomplish that noble goal?

     If a long-held ritual was going to be completely overhauled, there would have to be some sound and logical justification, and the truth is that the founders of London Grand Lodge couldn’t provide it. The symbolic significance of corn, wine, and oil needed to be kept secret.

     A modern analogy would be if an American President tried rewriting the words to the Constitution, or if the Pope tried to rewrite the words to the Lord’s Prayer, without offering a satisfactory explanation. Either would create an instant furor among the masses. That is essentially what happened when the Laying of the Cornerstone ceremony was rewritten, and that is what led to the split.

     The absolute insistence of the London Grand Lodge that the words of the Laying of Cornerstone ritual be changed, even if it meant a split in the Brotherhood, is powerful evidence that there must be something more to the corn, wine, and oil sequence than meets the eye. Replacing a traditional ritual that had been part of Masonry for generations with a new ritual that didn’t make any sense had to have been a painful time for everyone concerned. Those who didn’t know the secret of the code couldn’t understand why the ritual was being changed, and those who knew the secret couldn’t tell them. All the reformers could do was to stick to their guns and press ahead with the changes, and watch as hundreds of Grand Lodges in England, Europe, and America rejected the new ritual, split from the Mother Lodge, and continued practicing the Laying of the Cornerstone ceremony as it had been handed down to them from their forbearers, with no mention of corn, wine, and oil.


The Masonic Communion

     After Newton’s death, the center of the Masonic universe shifted from London to America, where a significant number of Masons participated in the framing of the Constitution and in the design and construction of a number of key buildings in Washington D.C. Numerous sites on the internet describe in detail, with paintings, the Laying of the Cornerstone of America’s Capitol Building. On September 18, 1793, George Washington, the 33rd degree Grand Master dressed in full Masonic regalia, along with three Worshipful Masters, approached the stone that was hanging from a tripod, and poured upon it corn, wine, and oil, after which it was lowered into the ground.

     Stepping back, it doesn’t require much imagination to see a striking similarity between the Masonic Laying of the Cornerstone ceremony and the Christian Communion service. In both there is an altar, a presiding minister, somber prayers, and elements of dedication. In the Christian Communion the elements are bread and wine. In the Masonic ritual the elements are corn, wine, and oil. The word “corn” in the Masonic liturgy needs explanation. Corn is native to the Americas and was unknown to the people of the Ancient Near East. But in England, among common folk, the word “corn” referred to all cereal grains that could be ground up into flour to make bread. For example, the English called bread made from corn flour, Indian corn bread. The King James Version of the Bible, the one that Newton favored, uses the word “corn” rather than the more accurate word “grain.” In all probability, the “corn” Washington poured on the cornerstone of the Capitol Building was actually wheat or barley seed.

     The Christian Communion service is a symbolic reenactment of the Last Supper, where Christ gathered with his twelve disciples in an upper room in Jerusalem on the night of the Passover just hours before he was betrayed by Judas Iscariot. At that service Jesus commanded his disciples that, after his death, they regularly commemorate the ritual until his return.

     The many similarities between the Christian and the Masonic Communion rituals, while obvious, are countered by significant differences. The Christian service, for example, uses bread, while the Masonic service uses grain. There is no question that Jesus used bread, not grain, at the original Last Supper. This means that either the Masons got it wrong, or the use of grain, a kind of modulated form of bread, represents a deeper level of symbolism in the Last Supper that, as I will prove, is a critical clue to finding the code.

     An even bigger difference is that in the Christian service there are only two elements, bread and wine, while in the Masonic ritual there are three elements, grain, wine, and olive oil. We know from Scripture that Jesus did not dedicate oil at the Last Supper, so, once again, either the Masons got it wrong, or oil, like grain, is a symbol secretly embedded in the Last Supper that leads to the code.

     To suggest that the Church has been celebrating the Lord’s Supper for two thousand years and has not been aware of a deeper level of symbolism is almost blasphemous. Is it possible that the greatest Bible scholars in Church history, up to the present day, have missed something that Isaac Newton found? Is the Masonic Lodge the keeper of the Bible’s greatest secret? If so, what new teachings might the code reveal? Could it contain bombshell information that scientifically proves that Jesus Christ was an extraterrestrial?

     Each week, hundreds of millions of Christians around the world gather to celebrate the Lord’s Supper. They do it in different ways and from a variety of theological perspectives, but, basically it’s all the same. The Masonic celebration of the Lord’s Supper is different in that it is based on a knowledge of deeper layers of symbolism in the original Last Supper. If my hypothesis that Isaac Newton discovered those deeper levels is true, and if they contain a map that leads to a verifiable Bible code, institutional Christianity may have to rethink some of its core beliefs.

     As you can see, the Sagan Signal is not about tinkering around the edges of the Christian faith. It advances an alternative model of Christianity that corrects fundamental errors currently held by the Church regarding the nature and character of God. We are not talking small potatoes.

     For those who want nothing more than to know the truth, the discovery of a hidden code in the Bible that identifies Jesus as a visiting alien is potentially a paradigm changing event. The challenge is real and the stakes are high. I am not assuming anything other than that my research will be critically evaluated by the best experts in the world and that it will pass every hurdle. Of course, parochial, shoot-from-the-hip opinions, either for or against my work, are worthless. The Smoking Gun Challenge features evidence that is replicable and testable, allowing for a serious forensic examination that will yield tangible and determinative results. 

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