The Knight's Templar candidate swore "to advance my brother's best interest by always supporting his military fame, political preference in opposition to another" (Wayne Sentinel, 14 Mar. 1828). In the same issue the Royal Arch obligation for the candidate for the degree is printed: "Furthermore do I promise and swear, that I will vote for a companion Royal Arch mason before any other person of equal qualifications." Again, the candidate swore "that a companion Royal Arch mason's secret given me in charge as such, and I knowing him to be such, shall remain as secret and inviolate in my breast as in his own, when he communicated it to me, Murder and Treason, not excepted."
The New York County sheriffs had the power to select and summon grand juries for courts in their jurisdiction. In those counties where the Morgan incident took place and in which there were trials, the sheriffs were all Masons, possibly all Royal Arch Masons. The Genessee County grand jury met in February 1827, where the foreman was a Knight Templar and so were several jury members. In Niagara County, where Eli Bruce was sheriff, sixteen Masons and several friendly to the Lodge were summoned for jury selection in January 1827. In April Bruce summoned the grand jurors—of twenty-one members present several were friendly to the Lodge and sixteen were Masons—the Niagara County court of Oyer and Terminer. Two of the jurors were themselves later indicted for the Morgan conspiracy. A majority of Masons were on the jury at the May session and half of the September session jurors were Masons.
The following are some of the passages which deal with these topics. Combinations: 2 Ne. 9:9; 26:22; Alma 37:21-32. Secret oaths and covenants: 2 Ne. 26:22-23 (compare the contrast that Smith draws with God, who opens his courts to all, vs. 24-30); Alma 37:27, 29; Hel. 6:25; 4 Ne. 42. Masonic secrets already revealed and known: Alma 37:23-26; Ether 8:20; 2 Ne. 30:17; Mosiah 8:17, 19. Masonry out to take over and destroy the government and all freedoms: Alma 10:27; Hel. 6:39; Ether 8:9-25; 9:1, 5-6, 26; 10:33; 11:7; 3 Ne. 6:21-30. Masonic judges control the courts: Alma 11:20; Hel. 6:21, 23; Mosiah 29:28-32; 3 Ne. 6:21-30. Masons claim the right to punish their members according to their own laws and not the laws of the land: Hel. 6:21-24.
[Wayne Sentinel; Robert Hullinger, Joseph Smith's Response to Skepticism]
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