The End of the Military Monks
Posted by foryourfaith on July 13, 2010
Philip IV of France, known as Philip the Fair (1268-1314), accused one of Europe’s greatest monastic orders of heresies. The Knights Templar were a military order founded in the twelfth century to protect pilgrims in the Holy Land. They also assumed the role of bankers, gaining power and influence. When the Holy Land fell to the Saracens, the Templar’s retired to European enclaves and remained virtually independent of both Church and State. Philip owed them a large sum of money and, far from being able to repay it, needed more.
On the night of Friday, 13 October 1307, the king ordered that all 2,000 Templar’s in France be arrested and thrown into dungeons. To justify the seizure of their property, shocking charges were made. The Knights were accused of worshiping an idol called Baphomet, a devil who sometimes appeared as a huge cat. Initiation into the order was said to involve denying the sacraments as well as desecrating the cross. The monks were also charged with sodomy and bestiality in their rituals, and of drinking a powder made from the ashes of dead Templar’s and their illegitimate children.
With the approval of Pope Clement V, King Philip had the Templar’s tortured until they either died or confessed to their horrific sins. Sixty-seven men attempted to retract their forced confessions and were burnt as relapsed heretics. One of these was Jacques de Molay, Grand Master of the Templar’s, who had been Philip’s friend and godfather to his daughter. Under torture he had confessed to spitting on the cross. On 14 March 1314 he publicly declared his innocence and was burnt alive the next day. As the flames consumed him, it is said that he cursed Philip and his descendants to the thirteenth generation. With his last words he summoned the king and pope to meet him before the judgment seat of God within the year. Less than a month later Pope Clement V was dead. In November Philip the Fair was fatally struck down at the age of 46, presumably by cerebral hemorrhage.
Philip’s three sons all died before the age of 35. They had a total of six wives among them, but none of them left a son who would inherit the throne. A dynasty had ended with the Templar’s curse.
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