For we are but shadows, floating for a moment over time soon to be dissipated by the light of eternity. Our sight is darkened by ignorance, our understanding by passion. Void of wisdom, we know it not.
The lambs with wolves shall graze the mead, the steer and lion at one crib shall meet, and harmless serpents lick the pilgrim’s feet.
In the course of years, many solemn changes pass before us. Man comes upon the scene of life; he flourishes, prospers, declines and dies; but if he be observant he will see and profit by the lessons of life. The Ark of the Covenant contains the sublimest instructions ever given to humanity. Act in conformity with the lessons you have learned.
The fraternal relation is one around which cluster the best feelings of our nature: and he who becomes duly impressed with a sense of the obligations of this relationship can neither be controlled by selfishness nor indifference. In the sacred chain that binds us whatever link is touched by the hand of Violence or Corruption, the tenth or ten thousandth, breaks the chain alike. Let there be no strife therefore between us. We profess principles which shall destroy the stubble and the chaff of dissension and refine the powers and faculties which constitute the dignity and glory of man.
In an association for mutual relief, men of all classes and conditions enter into a covenant, or contract, or bargain, to help and support, to protect and defend, to advise and admonish each other. Such an association is surely needed; for the strongest, the wealthiest or the most prosperous man may, in a moment, be crushed by adversity. Covenants have existed in all nations among all people.
Divine Wisdom teaches us to love Mercy and Truth—to write them on the tablets of our hearts—so that we may find favor and good understanding in the sight of God and man. It teaches that fear and the evil way, and the forward mouth are to be avoided. They that keep the ways of Divine Wisdom shall be blessed. They that will hear her instruction and are wise—who watch daily at her gates obtain favor of the Lord; but they that sin against her by refusing to seek her wrong their own souls; and in hating her shall perish.
Text from: Odd Fellows Pocket Companion, 1867.
Scott Moye, Marshall Lodge #1, Marshall Arkansas.