The death of innocence

Arise and shine for your light has come- for behold, darkness will cover the Earth, and a fog (arafel) all the peoples. – Isaiah 60:1-2

The arts and music of a time can absorb the spirit of that epoch and transmit it to later times to experience. My childhood and youth in the 1950’s and early ‘60s produced such songs as Where are you Little Star, All I have to do is Dream, This Magic Moment, Up on the Roof, The Lion Sleeps Tonight, With a Hundred Pounds of Clay, There Was a Tall Oak TreeUnchained Melody, For Everything There is a Season, My Girl and Blowin’ in the Wind- all melodious and romantic in the natural fragrance of innocence. That was before drugs began distorting the mind of youth. And before the youth of the USA began killing each other in mass school shootings. Yes, there were fights and black eyes, as there surely were in Tom and Huck’s day, but it owned the taste of innocence, and some honor.

On the television we watched models of happy families that were made up of a father and a mother and their children, like Ozzie and Harriet and Leave it to Beaver, and identified with heroes like Davy Crockett and the Lone Ranger and Hawkeye, who had the good sense of not bringing the curses of four-letter words to our ears. We laughed along with Amos and Andy and Groucho Marx and I love Lucy, who were actually funny. And sex was essentially at home in reality, not performed on the TV screen or movies for voyeurs. The thought of a man marrying a man could never have crossed our mind, unless contemplating Sodom.

But that was before the Revolution. Like the French Revolution, the ‘Progressive’ Left demanded the heads of the aforementioned, and in the name of equality, demanded that equal time be given to perversion and porno and, in the name of free speech, vile language. And they got what they demanded.

But that was only the first baby steps off the trail of innocence. In the years that followed every vile and rank beast has been set free from the cage of indecency, to the enthusiastic applause of the Liberal, and the dismay of the Conservative. And since then the morality of the nation has nose-dived, and much influenced the rest of the free world. Music has now devolved to the Rap of rape, murder, and sadism, with such edifying titles as Kill My Landlord , My Black AzzVagina Diner, Bulletproof Wallet and Doggystyle. Today our children and grandchildren face an electronic world on their Iphones laden with access to every form of porno and perversion, death games and music and movies that carry the virus of deceit and violence and cursing and perversion and sexual gender chaos. And God has become persona non grata, forbidden in schools or workplaces or public spaces. And we wonder why we see the young with no hope for the future, covered with tattoos and piercings and drugs, and even mass shooting their classmates at an alarmingly increasing rate?

We as servants of YHVH, unpopular like Noah in his day not so different from ours, speak across a widening chasm where understanding is diminished in the increasing distance. Today a thickening fog of electronic babble and blasphemy surrounds the Earth, clouding and numbing the minds of a generation absorbed and addicted. But we must continue the endeavor, for ultimately all will stand before the Judge, and there hear the verdict of either innocent or its opposite- guilty- and be rewarded accordingly. It is only the Lamb of God who can restore our corrupted minds miraculously back in the resurrection of innocence.

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Elhanan ben-Avraham, born in 1945, is a professional artist, poet, writer and father of two, grandfather of four, living in Israel since 1979. He has served in the IDF, taught the Bible internationally, published five illustrated books of poetry, painted two large Biblical murals in public buildings in Jerusalem, and most recently produced THE JERUSALEM ILLUSTRATED BIBLE, among many other works. He and his wife live in a quiet village in the Mountains of Judah.