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THE LEGEND OF HIRAM ABIFF


– TYPE OF THE ANTICHRIST –

By Hubert Luns

The outstanding figure in Freemasonry is undoubtedly the widow’s son known to mem-
bers of the fraternity under the somewhat obscure name of Hiram Abiff. He dominates
the ritual where the apprentice is to become a third degree Master, and that in spite of
the fact that neither the apprentice nor the fellow-craftsmen know anything about him
that warrants the protocol. Surprisingly even most Freemasons of the higher echelons
barely understand the exact meaning of the ritual. Only those men who in course of
time have shown the right disposition are allowed to get a glimpse, and perhaps more, of
the real import of the different acts. We are about to explain, to make you privy to one of
the greatest secrets of Freemasonry. You should realize that Freemasonry is no secret
organisation in the strictes sense: many individuals are known to belong to and their
temples are known. The secrecy is hidden in their true objectives that are known only to
the select few within the organization itself – less than one in hundred belong to that
inner circle.

Hiram is a known Biblical figure. According to 1 Kings 5:6, King Solomon sends
messengers to Hiram, king of Tyre, to acquaint that sovereign with his desire to erect
in Jerusalem the Temple that will serve as the only temple for the whole of Israel. It
therefore had to become grandiose. He invites Hiram to furnish men and materials for
the execution of the work. In 1 Kings 7:13-45 it is said that Hiram, the son of a widow
from the tribe of Naphtali, came to Jerusalem to carry out the work. His father was a
bronze worker filled with the required wisdom and understanding and skill. He
manufactured all kinds of bronze objects for the Temple among which two stalwart
pillars called Jachin and Boaz, of which replicas are to be found in all Masonic temp-
les, but that is not our focus of attention. This is what the Biblical story is about.

Out of this slender basis the Jewish oral tradition created a strange legend that was
inserted into Masonic ritual (the Jews were not involved with the Freemasonic move-
ment then). This legend states that Solomon’s first demand was for a highly talented
craftsman: “Send me now a man cunning to work in gold, and in silver, brass, and
iron, and in the application of deep purple, and crimson, and royal blue, and who has
the skill to work with the cunning men who are with me in Judeah and Jerusalem.”
The Order maintains that Hiram Abiff was the chief architect of the project, super-
vising the construction. Interestingly, they are used to call God “the Great Architect”,
but an architect in contrast to God creates nothing, but applies in a creative manner the
already available material. A.·.G.·.D.·.G.·.A.·.D.·.U.·. is often used in Freemasonic
circles, which stands for: “A la Gloire Du Grand Architecte De l’Univers”, or “To the
Glory of the Grand Architect of the Universe”. The Order associates Hiram Abiff with
two other figures: King Hiram of Tyre, and King Solomon of Israel, an antitype to
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God the Son, God the Father and God the Holy Ghost. It is said that these three are the
most exalted persons in the Masonic world and that the ultimate secrets had either
been revealed to them by a grand master, or had been discovered by themselves, and
could not be told to anyone else without their common consent. There were master
masons in abundance at the site, but apparently none of them was judged worthy to
know the secrets and mysteries of the highest and sublime degree. Thus, when three
inquisitive fellow-craftsmen sought to obtain the hidden knowledge, they were com-
pelled to approach one or another of the three grand masters. They selected Hiram
Abiff but when he refused to reveal the knowledge, the three ruffians murdered him
brutishly as described in the Masonic tradition.

In a remarkable interpretation King Solomon typifies God’s reign on earth via the king-
ship by the grace of God. He knows the secret but wants the absolute power. In the
Masonic philosophy Solomon is a despicable miscreant, just like the king of France,
Louis XVI, who was scandalously murdered during the French Revolution. Clearly,
Lucifer wants to give his reign to a better candidate than Solomon or any anointed
king (the anointing points at the H. Ghost). Without Solomon’s jealous plotting, the
legend goes, the murder would never have happened. And so they cry: “REVENGE,
REVENGE, REVENGE!”

The Biblical Hiram, who assisted King Solomon with the construction of the Temple,
was the first prince of the glorious Tyre. In the Masonic ritual the word ‘hiram’ serves
as a code for the fallen angel Lucifer or for his aide-de-camp, the Antichrist, being
described in these terms in the passage of Ezechiel 28:1-19:
«« The word of Yahweh came again unto the prophet Ezekiel. Son of man, say
unto the Prince of Tyre (Hiram Abiff c.q. the Antichrist): Thus saith the Lord
Yahweh! Because your heart is lifted up, and you have said: “I am a god! I sit
in the seat of God, in the midst of the seas.” Yet you are a human, and not
God, though you did set your heart as the heart of God and thought to be wiser
than Daniel, that no secret is hidden from you. By your wisdom and by your
understanding you have become very rich with gold and silver in your treasures.
By your cunning and by your traffic you have increased your riches. Your heart is
lifted up because of your riches! Therefore saith the Lord Yahweh: Because you
have set your heart as the heart of God, therefore, behold, I will bring strangers
upon you, the terrible of the nations, and they shall draw their swords against the
beauty of your wisdom, and they shall defile your brightness. They shall bring
you down to the pit, and you shall die the death of them that are slain, in the heart
of the seas. Are you willing to say before him that slayeth you: “I am God?”
But no, you are human and not God. Will you shout that while in the hands of
him who kills you? You shall die the death of the uncircumcised by the hand
of strangers, for I have spoken it, saith the Lord Yahweh!
The word of Yahweh came again unto me. Son of man, take up a lamentation
over the king of Tyre (King Hiram c.q. Lucifer), and say unto him: Thus saith
the Lord Yahweh! You seal up the sum as you are full of wisdom and perfect in
beauty. You were in Eden, the garden of God. Every precious stone was your
covering, the sardius, the topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the
jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle. You had ornaments of gold.
They were made for you on the day you were created. You were the anointed
cherub that covereth. I have set you, so that you were upon the holy mountain
of God. You walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire. You were
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perfect in all your ways as from the day that you were created till unrighteousness
was found in you. By the abundance of your traffic they filled the midst of you
with violence, and you have sinned. Therefore have I cast you as profane out of
the mountain of God, and I have destroyed you, O covering cherub, from the
midst of the stones of fire. Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty. You
have corrupted your wisdom by reason of your brightness. So, I have cast you to
the ground and I have laid you before kings, that they may behold you. By the
multitude of your iniquities, in the unrighteousness of your traffic, you have
profaned your sanctuaries. Therefore have I brought forth a fire from the midst
of you and it has devoured you. I have turned you to ashes upon the earth in the
sight of all of them that behold you. All they that know you among the peoples
shall be aghast, for you have become a terror, and you shall have disappeared for
evermore! »»

Hiram, King of Tyre, is a typos of the king of kings. Who other than Lucifer? Hiram
Abiff, the son of the King of Tyre, having been murdered by the ruffians, is the typos
of the beloved son in service of Lucifer. This aide-de-camp retained such a high stan-
ding that he was allowed to call himself the Great Architect. In the ritual he exempli-
fies the Antichrist. That will be a political figure that is supported by a spiritual leader,
the anti-pope, called the False Prophet in the Book of Revelations. The head of the
worldwide Masonic movement, calls himself pompously the Sovereign Pontiff of the
Order of Hiram. Deeper one cannot sink.

The antichristian reign by King Hiram and Hiram Abiff and their allies is founded on
the triple alliance of heresy, schism and occultism (satanism), which is symbolized by
the Freemason’s Temple of Jerusalem. These three terms also apply to an earlier con-
struction, known as the Tower of Babel. The Masonic Temple, which through the ages
is nearing completion, stands for the zeal, organisation and involvement of many for
the coming about of the evil empire. The work on the Temple may be seen as a kind of
reconstruction of the Tower of Babel. This is an anti-model that still reaches with its
pinnacle into the heavens, where it mocks everything that belongs to God. Applying
oneself to the achievement of that evil empire is called the rebellion against God. Yet,
curiously, it is a rebellion into which many adherents may be driven with the best of
intentions. In name of God people can do horrifying things. Few are willing to admit
who they really are…

In the ceremonial of the elevation to the third degree, mentioned at the beginning of
this article, Hiram Abiff, who was slain by the ruffians, rises from the dead. Before the
coffin is opened, from which the resurrection takes place, the very respectable master
of ceremony shouts: Mac Benac!, which means “the flesh leaves the bones”, according
to the hallowed principle that via decay comes reconstruction; or, stated differently:
that a revolution, like the French Revolution, is the necessary precursor to renewal. As
an acronym M.·.A.·.C.·.B.·.E.·.N.·.A.·.C.·. stands for: “Movebor Adversus Christum
Bellum Eternum Nam Antichristus Consurrexit”, or “I will promote an eternal war
against Christ, because here the Antichrist has risen.” So, when during the initiation
the postulant, who stretches out in the coffin, typifies master Hiram, this not alone im-
prints in his mind that death is preferable to betrayal of the Masonic ‘ideal’, but it
impresses also upon the fraternity that someone who works for the reign of Satan may
hope to be received as a worthy brother into the Grand Lodge above, where the
world’s Great Architect exalts himself above God the Creator and also above the
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earthly kingship by the grace of God. For that reason H.·.I.·.R.·.A.·.M.·. signifies “Hic
Iacet Rex Adventurus Mundi”, or “In this coffin sleeps the future king of this world”.

The plot is only another version of the legend of Osiris and Isis. The search for
Hiram’s body; the enquiries made of a wayfaring man, and the intelligence received;
the sitting down of one of the party to rest and refresh himself, and the hint conveyed
by the sprig over the grave; the decaying putrefying body of Hiram, remaining
fourteen days in the grave that had been dug by the assassins, before being discovered.
All these elements have allusion to the allegory of Osiris, who was cut into fourteen
pieces. The way even in which the grave of Hiram is found, covered with green moss
and turf, corresponds with that in which Isis found the coffin of Osiris.

Much of the elaborate ceremonial has a close affinity to the ancient sun-worship. In
the legend of Osiris the authors found something that fitted in exactly with the scheme.
Hiram was made to represent Osiris, or the sun, the glorious luminary of the day. The
three fellow-craftsmen, as the ceremonial of the initiation takes form, are stationed at
the East, South and West entrances, and these are regions from which the sun shines.
Twelve persons play an important part in this tragedy, a number that alludes to the
twelve signs of the zodiac. It has been suggested that the three assassins symbolize the
three inferior signs of winter: Libra, Scorpio, and Sagittarius. The sun descends in the
West, and it is at the West gate that Hiram is slain. The acacia which typifies the new
vegetation that will come as a result of the sun’s resurrection is a symbolism found in
many ancient solar allegories, and it is has therefore been easily introduced into the
Masonic ritual. According to one statement, the slain body was found on the seventh
day, and this again may allude to the resurrection of the sun, which actually takes
place in the seventh month after its passage through the inferior signs, that passage
which used to be called its descent into hell.