Legendary rock group KISS is well known for its outrageous theatrical performances and less known for echoing the Biblical prophet Jeremiah. But in the song, Just a Boy, from their 1981 album Music From the Elder, that’s exactly what they do. In this little-known gem, writers Paul Stanley and Bob Ezrin give voice to a young man who is asked to lead a valiant struggle of good versus evil. The young man refuses, pleading:
For I am just a boy too young to be sailing.
I am just a boy and my future is unveiling –
And I’m so frightened of failing.
This lyric is an example of how Biblical prophets are chosen. They are chosen. They refuse, arguing that they are unworthy or unfit for the task. Then, following God’s insistence, they accept.
In this week’s haftarah, the first haftarah of admonition leading up to Tisha B’Av, prophet Jeremiah is appointed by God to be a prophet. He replies:
for I am still a boy.