Colonel, Freemasonry as we know it developed mostly in the 1600s, and there are reputable claims of predecessors as far back as the Peasant's Revolt of 1381. The late John Robinson makes a good argument about escaping Templars forming the nucleus of the oaths, but it's all speculation.
Albert Pike was a Confederate General, a world-class intellect, and a shameless bullshitter. I discount any tenet of Masonry if the sole source is Albert Pike. A Mason is obligated only by his own conscience to keep a secret entrusted to him by a fellow Mason. There is also a specific exemption for cases of murder or treason.
A little further on the matter of oaths and obligations. The obligation contains many impressive words and bloody language, but if one reads it carefully (and they are all out there to read) the individual Mason is not bound to the Lodge, he is bound only to himself. In other words, by taking the obligation, a Mason is reminding himself, before God (or the Deity of his choice) of the duties he already owes to his fellow man.
I hope that shed a little light for y'all.