Knights of Tabor
Ritual of the Fourth Degree or Uniform Rank
Chief Mentor, C.M. Chief Drill Master, C.D.M.
Vice-Mentor, V.-M. Chief Standard Bearer, C.S.B.
Chief Scribe, C.S. Chief Guard, C.G.
Assistant Scribe. A.S. Chief Guard, C.G.
Chief Treasurer, C.T. Chief Guard, C.G.
Chief Orator, C.O. Chief Sentinel, C.St.
Full Dress Uniform—(For public turn-outs)—Black coat, single breasted, buttoned up in front; buttons of yellow metal, with letters U. K. T.; black pants; helmet, trimmed with gold lace; a shield of yellow metal, with letters U. K. T.; a scarlet feather (C.M. and Past C.M.’s, green feather); a baldric four inches wide; colors, black in the centre and scarlet on each side, trimmed with half inch gold lace; letters, on the left breast, U. K. T., made of yellow metal, the shape of a twelve-pointed star; on the shoulder, three sevens—777—(C.M. and past C.M.’s, colors black and green); where the ends of the baldric cross, a seven-pointed star, with letters U. K. T. All metal used on the baldric is yellow. Gauntlets same color as baldric, made to reach from wrist half way to elbow, trimmed with gold lace, and letters U. K. T.; gloves of yellow lisle thread; sword and silver scabbard, shield on hilt lettered U. K. T.; scarlet bolt; silver chains, with hooks for cup and cap; the cap trimmed with silver lace and lettered U. K. T.; C.M. and past C.M.’s, yellow metal for scabbard, chains, lace and letters.
UNDRESS UNIFORM.: When giving the degree, or on fatigue duty, the undress uniform is a cap, sword, belt and gloves.
THE HALL—Hanging over the C.M.’s post is a small black and green banner, with the letters U. K. T in the centre. Over the V.-M.’s post is a black and scarlet banner, with the letters U. K. T. The curtains at the windows are black and scarlet. The C.M.’s pedestal is covered with a green cloth. The V.-M.’s pedestal is covered with a scarlet cloth. The Temple House is covered with a black cloth. The altar is covered with a pure white cloth. On it, when giving a degree, is a Bible, opened at Judges, 4th chapter, and on it a sword without a scabbard, its hilt toward the C.M. Around the altar is a hollow square.
Not less than twelve Uniform Knights must be present at the opening.
The C.M. takes his post and gives one rap, for attention, and then a second rap, and every officer takes his post. A third rap calls the attention of the Drill Master.
C.M.: Sir Drill Master, please draw near to the Chief arid receive the pass.
The Drill Master goes direct to the C.M. and receives the pass in a whisper: Calanthe
C.M.: You will please visit all that are present and receive the pass. If there are any present who have not the pass, conduct them to the ante-room. The Drill Master visits all,
and those not having the pass are conducted to the anteroom; then returns to his post.
D.M. to C.M.: Sir Chief, all that are in the hall are Uniform Knights of Tabor.
C.M.: I thank you, Sir Drill Master. You will please place the Chief Sentinel on duty at his post, and instruct him to admit no person until further orders from the Chief. The Drill Master attends to the Chief’s orders and returns to his post.
D.M. to C.M.: Sir Chief, I have fulfilled your orders; the Chief Sentinel is at his post of duty, obeying your instructions.
C.M.: I thank you. Sir Knights, prepare for duty. At this command the Knights put on their undress uniform and are seated at their several posts.
C.M. gives three raps, all the officers stand. If any officer is not present, the C.M. orders a Knight to fill the post pro term.
C.M. to D.M.: Sir Drill Master, where are you, and what are your duties?
D.M. to C.M.: Sir Chief, I am at my post. My duties are to guard the inner entrance of Mount Tabor, and admit none except ordered by the Chief, and to command the Knights when they are under marching orders.
C.M.: I thank you. Where is the Chief Sentinel, and what are his duties?
D.M. to C.M.: The Chief Sentinel is on duty at the outer entrance. He is there with instructions to guard the entrance, and to admit none but by order of the Chief, and to see that all are properly clothed before they enter this plateau.
C.M.: I thank you. Where are the Chief Guards?
D.M. to C.M.: They are at their posts in the plateau, between the centre and the outer lines.
C.M. to C.G.’s: What are your duties, Sir Guards?
C.G.s to C.M., only one of the Guards answers: Sir Chief, it is our duty to assist the Chief in keeping order on the plateau, when it is open for work, and to inspect the candidates, prepare them for their reception, and assist in their initiation.
C.M. to C.G.: I thank you. Where is the Chief Banner Bearer?
C.G. to C.M.: He is at his post, to the left of the plateau, between the centre and the inner lines.
C.M. to C.B.B.: What are your duties, Sir Banner Bearer?’
C.B.B. to C.M.: Sir Chief, it is my duty to guard the banner of Mount Tabor, and to unfurl it when the Knights are under marching orders, and to defend it when in battle.
C.M. to C.B.B.: Thank you. Where is the Chief Scribe?
C.B.B. to C.M.: He is at his post, to the left of the inner lines of the plateau.
C.M. to C.S.: Sir Scribe, what are your duties?
C.S. to C.M.: Sir Chief, my duties are to make and keep a roll of the members, to record the business of Mount Tabor, and, by order of the Chief, to issue all notices and summons.
C.M. to C.S.: I thank you. Where is the Chief Treasurer?
C.S. to C.M.: He is at his post, to the right of the inner lines of the plateau.
C.M. to C.T.: Sir Treasurer, what are your duties?
C.T. to C.M.: Sir Chief, it is my duty to be present at every meeting on Mount Tabor, and to receive from the Chief Scribe the money he has collected from the Uniform Knights. and to give him my receipt therefor, also, to pay all warrants drawn on the Treasurer, when they are signed by the Chief and countersigned by the Chief Scribe, and to account for all money that I receive and pay out, and be ready to report, at any meeting, the condition of the treasury.
C.M. to C.T.: Thank you. Where is the Chief Orator?
C.T. to C.M.: He is at his post, to the right of the centre of the plateau.
C.M. to C.O.: Sir Orator, what are your duties?
C.O. to C.M.: Sir Chief, it is my duty to attend to the devotional exercises on Mount Tabor, to visit sick members and give consolation when needed, and to assist in the funeral ceremonies.
C.M. to C.O.: Thank you. Where is the Vice-Mentor?
C.O. to C.M.: He is at his post, in the outer centre of the plateau.
C.M. to V.-M.: Sir Vice, what are your duties?
V.-M. to C.M.: Sir Chief, my duties are to be present at all meetings on Mount Tabor, to assist the Chief in conducting the business in the plateau, and to preside when the Chief is absent.
C.M. to V.-M.: I thank you. Where is the Chief, and what are his duties?
V.-M. to C.M.: The Chief is at his post, in the inner centre of the plateau. His duties are to preside at all meetings on Mount Tabor, to issue commands, to call meetings, and to assemble the Knights for business. He is to govern fairly, justly and impartially, and to obligate candidates, and instruct thorn, assisted by the officers in the plateau.
C.M. to V.-M.: I thank you. Sir Drill Master, please assemble the Knights on the centre square for devotion.
C.D. to Knights: Sir Knights, attention! Mark time, forward march. The Knights, from their several places in the plateau march direct to the centre square, and form a hollow square around the altar, the C.O. standing on the "O" at the right side of the altar, the D.M, on 999, the V.-M. on 444, the C.S. on 777, and the C.T. on 333.
C.D. to C.M.: Sir Chief, the Knights are waiting for your commands.
The D.M. conducts the C.M. to the "O" in front of the altar. The centre square must be large enough for all the Knights to stand, with their toes on the line.
C.M. to Knights: Sir Knights, attention! To the right-about face, deposit caps. To the left-about face, handle swords, draw swords, present swords, deposit swords. All lay down their swords, pointing to the altar. Sir Knights, let us offer our prayers to God, the Supreme Governor of the Universe. All kneel on their right knee, arms across the breast.
The C.O. offers the following, or another appropriate prayer:
Oh Lord, our Heavenly Father, we come at this hour, confessing our many sins, asking that Thou, who art wonderful and all-merciful in Thy dealings with mankind, look upon Thy servants bowed here, and in pity forgive cur many sins of commission and omission. We pray that Thou bless every Knight of Tabor and their families with an outpouring of Thy love and mercy. Teach us to measure our days, give us strength to do Thy will, bind us together in the cords of Friendship everlasting. When the Golden Bowl is broken, and the sleep of death comes to us, Oh Lord, in the dissolution that frees the soul, be Thou our Guide to the Heavenly Temple of Eternal Rest, and we will give Thee all glory and honor throughout endless ages. Amen! Amen!! Amen!!!
All the Knights say: Holy is the Lord, God, praise His name.
C.M. to Knights: Arise, Sir Knights, and form the Cord of Friendship. This is done by locking arms and clasping the right and left hands together, fingers interlaced.
C.M.: May the Cord of Friendship in this plateau never be broken.
All the Knights answer: We will be as Dalmon and Phyletus—true to the end.
C.M .: Sir Knights, locked as we are, let me try the Test of Friendship, let us pass the test around.
The C.M. whispers the test to the Knight on his left, one whispers it to another, until it gets back to the C.M. If it comes right, the C.M. says: The test is true. If it does not come up right, they say it again, until all have it—Dionysius.
C.M. to Knights: Recover swords, present swords, return swords, to the right-about face, recover caps, forward march to post of duty. All go to their places.
C.M. gives four distinct raps and says: I proclaim this plateau open for work, drill, or business. He then gives one rap, when all are sealed.
C.M. to C.O.: Sir Orator, you will please prepare the altar. The C.O. opens the Bible at Judges, 4th chapter, and places on it a sword, without a scabbard, its hilt toward the C.M.
C.M. to D.M.: Sir Drill Master, please notify the Chief Sentinel that cur plateau is open. If there is any Knight that is a visitor or member of this plateau who wishes to enter, please report his name. The D. M. gives two raps on the portal, this is answered by the C.St. giving two raps. The D. M. gives two more raps, the C.St. answers. by two raps and opens the wicket. The D. M. whispers the C.M.’s orders and gives the raps, the C.St. answers by the same.
C.D. to C.M.: Sir Chief, the Chief Sentinel is on duty at his post.
C.M. to C.D.: I thank you.
C.D. to C.M.: Sir Chief, I hear the tocsin. The tocsin is an alarm bell rung by the C.St. to notify the C.D. that he is wanted at the portal.
C.M. to C.D.: Sir Drill Master, attend the call of the tocsin. The C.D. gives the raps at the portal and is answered by the C.St., he then opens the wicket and informs the C.D. that Sir ... is prepared to enter, but cannot give the pass.
C.D. to V.-M.: Sir Vice, Sir ... is prepared to enter; and Sir ... desires to enter, but cannot give the pass.
V.-M. to C.D.: Sir Drill Master, let Sir ... enter. A Knight that enters the plateau must advance behind the altar with drawn sword, stand on the "O" and salute the C.M., and turn to the left and salute the V.-M., and take his seat.
V.-M. to Knights: Sir Knights, Sir ... desires to enter, but cannot give the pass, is he known to the plateau? If there is a Knight present who knows Sir ... belongs to the rank of my plateau, he rises and says: Sir ... is a member of the plateau. A Knight cannot give this assurance if he has not met the applying Knight in an open plateau. If the applicant is not known to any of the rank, the C.M. appoints a committee of three to examine him. On their report he is admitted or requested to retire from Mount Tabor.
V.-M. to C.D.: Sir Drill Master, you we authorized to give Sir ... the pass, and tell the C.St. to let him enter.
C.M. to C.S.: Sir Scribe, have you anything at your post requiring the attention of the plateau?
C.S. to C.M.: Sir Chief, on my desk is the petition of …. I also notified Sir … to be present at this meeting to receive the degree. I suppose he is in the reception room.
C.M. to C.S.: Sir Scribe, please read the petition, we will act on that first, and give the degree next, if the candidate is present.
The C.S. reads:
To the members of … Temple, No. ... The undersigned, believing the Knights of Tabor a good institution, wishes to become a member, and asks to be accepted.
Age, Residence, Occupation
Enclosed fee $, Recommended by
Dated … A. D., 18..
The C.M. orders the Guards to prepare the ballot box— which is done by putting the white and black balls in one apartment—and to set the box on the altar. The A. S. calls the roll, and the members vote when their names are called.
The white balls cast elect the candidate, and the black balls reject him. If four black balls are found among those east. he is rejected, and can make application again after three months. If there be a mistake made, in the opinion of the C.M., he can order another ballot to be taken immediately.
When all have voted, the C.M. orders the Guards to count the ballots, and pass the box to the V.-M., who looks into the box, and requests the Guards to take it to the C.M. The C.M. examines the ballots and gives four raps, all stand, when he says: I proclaim that Sir ... is elected to receive the full degrees of the Temple and plateau. Sir Scribe, you will please notify him to that effect. If the C.M. finds that the candidate is not elected, he so announces. The C.M. gives one rap, and the members are seated.
C.M. to D.M.: Sir Drill Master, please inquire at the portal if Sir ... is present. The D.M. gives the usual raps, and receives the same from the C.St., who opens the wicket and answers that the candidate is in the preparation room.
D.M. to C.M.: Sir Chief, your orders have been obeyed. The C.St. reports that the candidate is in the preparation room. Not more than four candidates can be initiated at one meeting, except in organizing, and then not more nor less than twelve. The plateau can meet to initiate members as often as needed, and may ballot for members at every meeting.
C.M. to D.M.: I thank you. Sir Guards, you will please prepare the candidate. The Guards go from the plateau into the preparation room direct.
One of the Guards to candidate: We have come to investigate. If you do not pass our examination, you must retire from Mount Tabor.
1.How old are you?
2.How long have you been a member of the Order of Twelve?
3.How long have you been a Key Knight?
4.Have you full use of your right hand?
5.Can you kneel on your right knee?
6.Can you walk without limping?
7.Are you temperate in your habits?
8.Are you married?
9.Do you believe in God?
10.Do you believe in future reward and punishment, as spoken of in the Holy Bible?
11.If you take an oath in the name of God, can you violate or break that oath?
12.Would you be willing to die rather than break an oath taken before God and man?
13.Will you, if you are admitted a member of this plateau, continue and remain a firm friend to every member of the Uniform Rank?
14.Will you continue to live a respectable life and be an honorable citizen?
These questions must be written, or printed copies kept in the plateau. The answers must be written opposite the questions.
One of the Guards returns to the plateau with the questions and answers, and stands at the altar.
C.G. to C.M.: Sir Chief, we have investigated the candidate, and have here the answers.
C.M. to C.G.: Sir Guard, you will please give the investigation to the Chief Scribe. The C.S. reads aloud, slowly and distinctly. The C.M. gives four raps, all stand.
C.M. to Knights: Sir Knights, you have heard the answers in the investigation; are you satisfied?
All answer: We are. If there is one who says he is not satisfied, he must prove, by two or more members, that the candidate is not a reliable man; if it is so proven, the candidate is rejected, and he must retire from Mount Tabor.
The C.M. gives one rap, and all are seated.
The candidate is prepared as follows: Both arms are tied close to his sides by a rope around his body; a red bag, made of heavy cotton, is made to cover his head, and bang below his shoulders. The cotton must be thick enough so that he can not see through it. Three or four bags must be kept in the plateau, so as to accommodate all candidates.
The Guards march the candidate into the plateau in silence. They slowly march four times around the plateau, keeping the altar on the right. They halt at the V.-M.’s post.
One of the Guards to V.-M.: Sir Vice, you see before you a Key Knight, who has successfully been invested with the twelve points of Taborian Knighthood, and is ready, having made every preparation to receive the Fourth Degree, or Uniform Rank.
V.-M. to C.G.: Sir Guard, you say he has been invested with the twelve points of Taborian Knighthood?
V.-M. to Candidate: Will you name the points?
Candidate to V.-M.: Sir Vice, the 1st point is Application; the 2d, Recommendation; the 3d, Election; the 4th, Entrance; the 5th, Passing the Squares; the 6th, Obligation; the 7th, Signs; the 8th, Pass-word; the 9th, Instruction; the 10th, Secret Lock; the 11th, Secret Key; the 12th, Knighthood. The Guards may find It necessary to prompt the candidate in his answers.
V.-M. to Candidate: You have proved that you are a perfect Knight of Tabor, Dalmon and Phyletus. You are now at the outer centre of the plateau, on Mount Tabor. You are about to learn the deep, untold mysteries of Mount Tabor. They who enter the inner centre of Mount Tabor must have courage, and a firm determination to be true to every member of the plateau. You will not be permitted to violate an obligation and live. The seven tests of true, firm friendship will be unfolded to you. If you fail in any one of these tests, you will never see another sunrise. Consider well before you go further. If your conscience tells you that you are a true man, I advise you to go forward. If you feel that you cannot conform to the secret tests, my advice is that you retire, and go no further on the plateau.
After waiting a minute or two, the V.-M. asks: What have you decided on?
Candidate to V.-M., prompted by the Guards: I will go forward to the inner centre.
V.-M. to C.G.: Sir Guards, you are authorized to conduct this Key Knight into the inner centre. When you arrive at the post of the inner Guard, he will demand of you the inner pass. Give him this with your sword’s point resting on the floor of the plateau—Zebulon. They march once around the plateau, and halt opposite the C.D. M.’s post.
C.D.M.: Halt! Who are you that approaches the inner centre?
C.G., resting the points of swords on the floor: There are two tubes. We are of Zebulon.
C.D.M., resting the point of his sword on the floor: We have been looking for you, enter in the name of Naphtali. The C.B.M. and C.G.’s salute and return swords.
C.D.M.: My orders, received from Barak, are, that when Zebulon came, to admit him and conduct him to the Chief Orator. The C.G.’s conduct the candidate once around the plateau, and halt at the C.O.’s post.
C.G. to C.O.: Sir Chief Orator, I was ordered to conduct this Key Knight to your post by the C.B.M., and to inform you that he is prepared to receive the seven tests.
C.O. to Candidate: You have Come this far; the next step will open the full plateau to you, and you will be enrolled a member, if you are permitted to pass this post. You will please place your open right hand on the open Holy Bible. The Bible lays in front of the C.O., opened at the 4th chapter of Judges. You are now in proper position to take the seven tests. I warn you to answer, without mental reservation. Your life depends upon your answers.
C.O.: 1st. Do you believe in God, the Supreme Ruler and Governor of Mankind?
Candidate: I firmly believe in God, and that he has full power to reward those who obey and believe in Him, and that He has power to punish those who disobey His commands.
C.O.: 2d. Are you satisfied that there is a Heaven for the good and just, and a hell for the bad and unjust, who die without repentance?
Candidate: I am fully convinced that there is a Heaven for the good and just, and a hell for the bad and unjust, who die without repentance.
C.O.: 3d. Do you believe that an obligation taken in the name of God is binding as long as you have life in your body?
Candidate: I sincerely believe that an obligation, taken in the sacred name of God, binds me to what I promise as long as I live.
C.O.: 4th. You are about to be obligated a member of this plateau; will you promise never to reveal its secrets to mortal man, except when you are giving the degree, or assisting in giving it, or for instruction to members?
Candidate: I will remember my obligation, and carefully keep my promise and secret oath.
C.O.: 5th. Do you promise never to impart the secrets of a Uniform Knight of Tabor to woman, either by word or sign, or in any other manner, so as to enable her to guess at any part of the secrets?
Candidate: I promise to be guarded in the presence of women, and never reveal to them the secrets of a Uniform Knight by word or act.
C.O.: 6th. Many persons become members of an Order, belong to it for a longer or shorter time, and are by some unavoidable circumstance suspended or expelled—a true Knight in never suspended or expelled, unless through unavoidable causes. If you should be so unfortunate as to have the sentence of suspension or expulsion passed upon you, will you even then keep your lips seated, and not expose the secrets that you have learned on the plateau?
Candidate: I will never, under any circumstances, willfully and knowingly expose the secrets of the Uniform Knighthood.
C.O.: 7th. When initiated as a Key Knight, you were told that the work was finished when the Key to the Lock. The explanation was not given to you. Do you promise to obey the teachings of the mysterious Key?
Candidate: I received the Secret Lock, and was informed that the Key was fitted to the Lock, but I received no further explanation. I will obey the teachings of the mysterious Key, when I receive it.
Let the candidate give the answers in his own words. If not satisfactorily given, prompt him in giving the true answers.
C.O. to C.G.’s: Sir Chief Guards, you are hereby requested to conduct the candidate to the central altar, and place him in proper position, and inform the Chief Mentor that the candidate has passed the seven tests and is within the hollow square, in proper position to be received as a member of the plateau.
The C.G.’s conduct the candidate once around the plateau, slowly and in silence, and stand him at the altar with his face toward the C.M., then one of the C.G.’s marches to the post of the inner centre, and salutes the C.M. with his sword.
C.G. to C.M.: Sir Chief, I am requested by the Chief Orator to inform you that the candidate has passed the seven tests and is now at the central altar, ready to receive your orders.
C.M. to C.G.: Sir Guard, I am pleased to hear that Zebulon has arrived and is ready to be enrolled with Naphtali; you are ordered to take your proper place within the square.
The C.G. salutes the Chief and marches to his proper place.
The Chief gives four distinct raps, and all stand; he then silently takes his place at the altar, the C.O. to his right and the Guards immediately behind the candidate. The Chief waves his left hand and the Knights form silently around the square, with their toes resting on the lines. The Chief waves a second time, and the Knights silently draw their swords and point them toward the candidate. The Chief takes the hilt of the sword that lays on the Bible in his right hand and lets the point rest on the open Bible. The Chief waves his left hand, and the Guards lift the veil from the candidate’s head.
C.M. to Candidate: You are here, in the centre of the plateau of Mount Tabor. Around you are your friends, who will. with drawn swords, defend you when in danger. Before you can demand their full aid and protections you must receive an obligation that will bind Zebulon to Naphtali as long as life shall last. It is the bond of friendship, the union of hearts, and unity of action. You will please kneel on your right knee, and place your right hand on the open Bible, palm downward, and repeat after me:
The Guards lay the points of their swords on the candidate’s right shoulder. (if there are snore candidates than Guards, other Knights assist.) The Knights on the lines rest the points of their swords on the floor of the plateau. The three candles are lighted on the Temple House, and all the working tools are placed on or around the Temple House.
I, …, in the presence of God, the Father; God, the Son, and God, the Holy Ghost, in the name of the Holy Trinity, do hereby swear (or affirm) that I will remember and fulfill my answers given in the seven secret tests. I further swear (or affirm) that I will remember my oath of initiation, my oath in the Dalmon Lock, and my oath as a Key Knight, and I will obey them as secret trusts given to me, and if I knowingly or willfully violate any of my several obligations, may I be subjected to all the penalties named. I wish to be and remain a true and faithful member of the plateau during life.
All the Knights answer after the C.M.: He is worthy, let him receive the teachings of the Key.
C.M. to Knights: Attention, Sir Knights I Carry swords, form a wall of steel. All the Knights, except the C.M. and C.O., are on the lines, and form the wall.
C.M., resting the point of his sword on the candidate’s head: By the authority in me vested as Chief of the plateau, I now announce and proclaim that Sir ... is now invested with all the rights, privileges and honors that belong to the Uniform Rank of Tabor. Arise, Sir ..., and receive the instruction that you need to prepare you for duty. You are requested to turn and look all around you. These are your true friends, and form a wall around you as strong as steel; let your friendship be equally as strong.
C.M. to Knights: Attention, Sir Knights! Carry swords, present swords, salute, return swords, right-about face, mark time, march to seats. The V.-M. leads off in the march, the C.D.M. commands. They march once entirely around the plateau, and take their seats on the second round. The C.M. stands in front of the candidate; the Guards behind the candidate; the C.O. to the right of the C.M., with a large gilded wooden key.
C.N. to Candidate: Sir Knight of the Uniform Rank, you are now standing in the centre of the plateau of Mount Tabor. This plateau represents the top of the historical Mount Tabor. About one thousand three hundred years before the coming of the Son of God, the children of Israel were held captives by Jabin, King of Canaan. For twenty years he oppressed the children of Israel. Deborah, a prophetess, was Judge of Israel. She dwelt between Ramah and Bethel, in Mount Ephraim. The people came to her for judgment. Deborah, being inspired by the Lord God, sent for Barak of Kedesh. She told him that the Lord God of Israel had chosen him to break the bondage of Israel, and that he must assemble ten thousand men, of the tribes of Naphtali and Zebulon,
on Mount Tabor. Barak knew that it was a gigantic undertaking to fight Jabin’s army of one hundred thousand men and nine hundred chariots of iron, fully armed and equipped. This formidable host caused Barak to doubt himself, though Deborah told him that the Lord God had promised him the victory. Barak said to Deborah: "If you go with me, I will go." She said: "I will go with you, but the honor of the battle shall be given to a woman." The mysterious part of the scene was the gathering of the ten thousand men on Mount Tabor. Certain stalwart men of the tribes of Naphtali and Zebulon were impressed with the idea that they were wanted on Mount Tabor. These men armed themselves and silently left their homes, and by different paths made their way to Mount Tabor. They were surrounded by spies and enemies, yet they succeeded in their effort to get to Tabor. They were conducted by the mysterious Key of Universal Power: He who said, "I open, and no man can shut." When the morning sun come up from the East, the inhabitants of the plains of Zuanaim saw a sight that filled them with wonder and amazement. The plateau on Mount Tabor was covered with armed men, their arms glittering in the sunlight. Tabor the day before had no living being on its plateau. Where did this host come from, and how did they pass through our lines? No one could answer the question. Heber, the Kenite, one of the descendants of Hobab, went through Kedesh looking for Barak and Deborah; he did not find them. He concluded that they were with the army on Tabor, and that the children of Israel were preparing to light for their liberty. Jabin’s army was encamped on the banks of the river Kishon. This vast and well-equipped host was commanded by Sisera, an able general. Heber made haste and ran to the headquarters of the Canaanite army, and informed Sisera that Barak and Deborah had gathered an army on Tabor, and Israel was preparing for battle. Sisera sent his spies to find out the strength of the Israelite army. They returned, and told him that there were about ten thousand. It was a little hand compared with the multitude he had under his command. Sisera gave orders for his army to march to Tabor, and to sweep the little band on Tabor out of existence. This mighty host that covered the valleys and plains from Harosbeth unto the river Kishon, marched to capture the small company on Tabor. Steadily this large army marched forward until Mount Tabor was encompassed on all sides. Suddenly Barak and his band started on a run down the mount and attacked Sisera’s army impetuously. One of the grandest scenes of warfare transpired; the stars of Heaven in their courses, God’s artillery of angels fought for Israel that day. Thunder and lightning of Jehovah’s wrath was hurled at Sisera’s army. The river Kishon overflowed its banks and swept large numbers of the Canaanites into its surging waters. Sisera’s army might have conquered Israel, but they could not stand against the Key of God’s power. Jabin’s host fled, and was pus sued by Barak. Sisema was so pressed that be left his chariot, and tried to make his escape on foot. He ran to his friend Heber’s tent. He thought to bide there. Jael, the wife of He-her, gave him a drink of milk and hid hut under cover with a mantle. He soon fell asleep. The Key moved Jael, and she took a nail and hammer and drove the nail into his temple, which fastened him to the ground. Thus, as Deborah had predicted, the honor was awarded to a woman. When Barak arrived opposite her tent, she called him and showed him the dead general of Jabin’s host. Israel celebrated in songs of triumph.
C.M. to Candidate: Sir Knight, this history that you have just heard, unfolds lessons that we should remember. The first is that the Key of Jehovah’s power is universal. He who has the Key to the ineffable name of Elohim is invested with supreme power. Moses received the Key at Sinai, when God appeared to him and said: "I am that I am." Joshua possessed the Key when he commanded the sun and moon to stand still. Elijah held the Key when he caused fire to come from Heaven to kindle the sacrifice. Solomon hind the Key when he ascended the throne of Israel. The three Hebrew children were clothed with the Key when they were thrown into the fiery furnace. Daniel carried the Key with bins into the lions’ den. The prophets and seers held the Key down to Malachi. The sacred Key to the name of God seemed to have been lost when Malachi closed the Book of Prophecies. For nearly four hundred years the world was in moral darkness; there was no direct revelation from God to man. In these dark ages humanity had no guide or light to lead them out of the deep gloom; men felt intuitively that there was a higher power to whom they were accountable. In their earnestness to find and worship this being, they invested all kinds of idol-worship. From time to time eminent men and learned scholars seemed to be inspired to lead mankind out of the gloom, but their philosophic teachings only brought forth a code of morals. They bad not the Key of heavenly knowledge. The second part of the mysterious teachings of Tabor is that the higher duties of leading the people to the plains of honor and success are often given to a woman, verifying God’s word that she is man’s help-mate. In the history of Deborah and Jael this is fully demonstrated. I will now invest you with the Hebrew word, which was used when they lost the Key to the ineffable name of Deity, and the Key of promise that was imparted by the prophet Malachi, that when he came he would make all things new, and the word that closed the old dispensation would open the new dispensation, to continue forever. He who said, "I have the Keys of the Kingdom; I open, and no man can shut."
The word is given in this form: The C.N. stands by the left side of the candidate, with his right arm across the small of the candidate’s back, his hand clasping the right side of the candidate; the candidate’s left arm and hand in the same manner across the C.M.’s back. The C.M. and the candidate interlace the fingers of their right and left hand, and hold them up even with their foreheads, in this position the word is given, in a whisper, and the candidate repeats it until he has it.
The C.M. whispers to Candidate: Y-A-H-V-E-H. The C.M. stands in front of the candidate and gives, him the following instruction: The name that you have just received is the Key to Universal Power. It is the sacred Key of Life and Death. The great sign of distress is given by clapping the hands together three distinct times. You are instructed when yea hear this sound to find the person who gives it and say: on the plateau. If the person answers, I change not, it is your duty to defend him if he is in danger, or aid him if he is in want, or advise him if he asks it.
C.M.: THE NEW MYSTERIOUS WORD: This Keyword was announced at the close of the prophecies, at the beginning of the dark ages. The answer was given nearly fear hundred years after the Key-word was proclaimed to the world. It is given in this way: Cross your arms, with the right over the left, and advance and interlace your fingers with my fingers—this forms a double cross. (The hands are opposite the face.) The C.M. whispers: P-U-R-I-F-I-E-R. The candidate is instructed to answer: The W-O-R-D.
C.M., instructing the candidate: The crossed arms, with the palm of the hand out, is the calling sign; that will call a Knight of the Uniform Rank to come to you at once.
This sign is to be used only when you absolutely need the Knight.
The right hand is the eye in the darkest night. With it the Knights of the Uniform Rank can find a Friend or Brother by day or night. I will now give you a lasting hand of friendship It is the double bond, that unites the members of the plateau for life. It is the custom when two persons are introduced to shake hands. When you take a hand, clasp it in this manner: with the thumb below the knuckles, and with your left hand clasp the hand of the man that you are shaking. If he is a Knight of the Uniform Rank, he clasps yours in the same manner with his left hand. The first one speaks: Ha, it is you—K-A-R-A-B. The second answers: Yes, of K-E-D-E-S-H.
C.M. to Candidate: The Pass-word, which is to be given when you desire to enter an open plateau, is Calanthe. This is given to the C.St. In opening a plateau this Pass is given by all who are present. If you should forget it, you will be obliged to retire from the plateau until after it is opened; and then, if a member present can certify that you are a Knight of the Uniform Rank, the Pass will be imparted to you. If there are none present who can certify for you, you must retire from the Mount, unless you can satisfy a committee.
The Test-word is Dionysius. This is given only as a part of the opening ceremony.
At whatever place you are, and if you desire to know whether there are any Knights of the Uniform Rank present, you can give this sign place the thumb and forefinger of the right hand on either side of the nose, between the eyes, and draw them slowly down to the upper lip three times. If any Knights of the Uniform Rank are present, they will answer by drawing the four fingers of the right hand once across the forehead, from left to right.
C.M. to Candidate: You will please kneel on your right knee. The C.M. gives four raps, and all stand.
C.M.: Attention, Sir Knights Forward march, form on the hollow square, draw swords, present swords. The C.M. to echos the head and each shoulder of the candidate with the print of his sword, and places the point of the sword on the candidate’s left side.
C.M.: I, ..., by the authority and power as installed Chief of this plateau, do hereby invest Sir … with the full order of Knighthood, with the rank of a Uniform Knight of the plateau. Rise and stand, Sir … The trumpet sounds, and the Knights clash their swords for about one minute.
The C.G.’s fasten a sword belt around the new Knight’s waist, and put a helmet on his head.
The C.M. puts the hilt of a sword in his right hand and says: With this sword you are to protect and defend a Sir Knight of the Uniform Rank when in danger. You are to drive it in defense of a Sir Knight’s wife, widow or children, when they are assailed. With it you are to defend and protect a Daughter of the Tabernacle. You will please salute the plateau and return your sword to the scabbard.
C.M.: Attention, Sir Knights! Carry swords, return swords, to the right-about face, march to seats.
The new Sir Knight is seated behind the altar. The C.M. takes his seat and requests the C.O. to present the working instruments to the new Knight. The Guards band the tools to the C.O. and he presents them to the Knight. The C.M. explains them.
C.M.: THE EMBLEMATIC KEY: This is a large wooden key, gilded.
This is an emblem of the mysterious Key of Universal Power. The name of Him who holds the keys of the kingdom. The keys of life and death. The sacred name of Him who said: "I open, and no man can shut." The key-word that brought salvation and immortality to earth. I admonish you to have faith in His promises, and hope He will open eternal life to you. The key of love will open the door of everlasting bliss, for yen to enter.
C.M.: THE STAR: This is a large gilded star with twelve points.
This is an emblem of the Star of Promise. The twelve points represent the perfect number. The morning star rises to usher in the majestic sun which dispels the night’s darkness and illuminates the earth with the light of day. It teaches mortals to remember the Star of Bethlehem, which ushered in and proclaimed the birth of Jesus, the illustrious Light of the World, that spirit of eternal light, and sure guide that conducts His followers through the dark valley and shadows of death to the everlasting light of an immortal life and a starry crown. He said; "I have the Keys of Death."
C.M.: THE EYE THAT NEVER SLEEPS: This is a glass ball, with an eye painted on it. This is an emblem of the all-prevailing presence of Jehovah. King David said: "Thou art present everywhere." The sleepless eye is the key to the omnipresence of the Great I Am, the Elohim, and of Him who said: "Lo, I am with you, even unto the end." The emblematic eye teaches us to so shape our lives that we may be acceptable to Him from whose perceptive vision the most secret of our heart’s thoughts are not hid.
C.M.: THE EAR: This is carved out of wood. The human car is an important part of the systematic make-up of mankind. It is the key that opens the door to knowledge and wisdom. The ear receives the instructions which enable mankind, step by step, to ascend to the highest point of art, science, architecture, invention and mechanics. It trains the mind, and enables us to divide the good from the evil. May you receive the good, and banish the evil.
C.M.: THE CLASPED HANDS: The hands are made of wood and gilded. The clasped hands are emblematic of true friendship—the key that admitted you to this plateau, where the hand of firm friendship clasped yours. The bond that sealed that friendship was woven while you stood in the centre of the solid, compact wall of steel. Every Knight of the Uniform Rank is your friend, and as true as steel. I admonish you to remember the God-man, who is a friend that is closer than a brother.
C.M.: THE HOLY BIBLE. I present you the greatest and grandest of books. It is the inspired word of God, written by God’s great and inspired men. It is the mysterious history that holds the key, and opens the door which admits man to enter and read God’s will to man. The leaves of this book unfold God’s eternal purposes and the future destiny of mankind. I recommend that you carefully read its pages.
C.M.: THE TWO CUIPS: These cups are made in the shape seen in the manual. The key of all wisdom tells of two invisible cups that attend mankind all through his life in this world: The cup of gladness, and the cup of sorrow. These twin cups enter with the birth of man, and are his companions through life.
C.M.: THE GAVEL OR MALLET. This is the emblem of authority, and the proper instrument to be used by the presiding officer. When sounded, it demands attention and silence.
C.M.: THE THREE EWERS: These are made in the form found in the manual, made of silver, glass or china. These are used in laying the corner-stone of public buildings—churches, colleges, bridges, libraries, and buildings for public use. They hold the emblems of life: earth, corn and water.
C.M.: THE BOOK LAWS: The constitution and manual. I present to yon the laws and ceremonies that govern our Order. You are requested to read them carefully, that you may be informed of our mode of government.
C.M.: THE THREE LIGHTS: The forum of candle-sticks is found in the manual. The colors of the candles are green, white and red. You see before you the three emblematic lights. Notice that they are horning upon the Temple House. The first is green, and is an emblem of eternal life. The second is white, an emblem of innocence and purity. The third is red, an emblem of blood. The three remind us of the trinity in the Godhead. God, the Father, gave his only begotten son to save the world of mankind. The white represents His purity and innocence. The red represents his shed blood for the redemption of man. He said: "I am the light of the world." He said: "Follow me. I have the keys of death and the grave. They who hear my voice, I will open their graves and bid them rise and inherit eternal life. I have the keys of the kingdom and will open the pearly gates for the faithful to enter into eternal joy. I am He that was dead; behold, I live forevermore." Remember the teachings of the three lights.
C.M., gives four raps, and all stand: I now announce that Sir … has been made a member of the plateau and has received full instruction. The C.St. will please enroll his name on the books of plateau No. .... The C.G.’s now conduct him to a seat. C.M. gives one rap, and all are seated.
If there is no further business, the C.M. closes the plateau, and he gives two raps, which calls the C.D.M. to stand.
C.M.: Sir C.D.M., the hours grow old, and the time has come to rest from labor. Please notify the C.St. that this plateau will close, and assemble again … in the month of ….
C.D.M., delivers the order to the C.St. and returns to his post: Sir Chief, the C.St. is on duty, and has received your orders.
C.M.: Thank you. He gives four raps, and all stand. Sir Knights, attend, and assist me in giving the signs. All the signs are given, from the last to the first. In opening the plateau all the signs are given, but from first to last. Sir Knights, attend to the instruction of the Chief Orator.
C.O.: May the blessings of God, the Father; God, the Son; God, the Holy Spirit, be with all true Knights, and all members of the Order of Twelve. May peace and harmony be found in its fullness throughout the length and breadth of our Order, now, henceforth, and forever. Amen! Amen!! Amen!!!
All say: Amen! Amen!! Amen!!!
C.M.: I announce that plateau No. ... is closed, to remain so until the … in month of ….
Sir C.D.M., please give notice to the C.St.
Lecture in the Fourth Degree
First: Have you been received on Mount Tabor?
Second: I am Zebulon, and met Naphtali on the Plateau of Tabor.
First: How many tribes assembled on Mount Tabor?
Second: There were but two tribes, under the command of Barak; and Deborah, the prophetess, was our adviser.
First: How many men were enrolled and prepared for battle?
Second: There were ten thousand men of Israel, and not a coward among them.
First: Who was it that betrayed the men of Israel to Jabin’s host?
Second: It was Heber, the Kenite the husband of Jael, the slayer of Sisera, the General of Jabin’s army.
First: What extraordinary event is recorded in the battle that day between the Cannaanites and Israelites.
Second: The stars in their courses fought for Israel that day.
First: What is meant by the stars in their courses?
Second: At evidently means God’s angels. They are often called stars in the Holy Scriptures.
First: What is the meaning and teaching of the Uniform Rank Degree?
Second: Its meaning is the highest order of friendship. The ten thousand of the tribes of Naphtali and Zebulon who assembled on Tabor were friends, ready to die for each other.
First: You have learned well the instruction. Have you the key that admitted you to the plateau?
Second: I have the first and second. The first is Calanthe; the second is Dionysius.
First: You have said well. Can you give me the Key of Life and Death?
Second: I can, with your assistance.
First: I will help and assist you. They meet each other in form and give the ineffable word Y-A-H-V-E-H.
First: You have done well. Can you give the mysterious key that binds the old dispensation and the new dispensation together?
Second: I will try, if you will assist me. They advance and give the grip. The Second gives P-U-R-I-F-I-E-R-, First answers W-O-R-D.
First: I am satisfied, but I must test you further. Have you the double token?
Second: I have, try me. The double grip of lasting friendship is given. The Second gives K-A-R-A-B. First answers K-E-D-E-S-H.
First: You have proved to us that you are a true Knight of the Uniform Rank.