Originally from Brooklyn, New York, Keith Gordon Green, born in 1953, was a pianist, singer, and songwriter in the genre of Contemporary Christian Music whose songs continue to bless and minister to people all around the world.
In addition to being raised as a Jew, traditionally, Keith grew up in the Church of Christ, Scientist ( Christian Science), and also read the New Testament. He had described his upbringing as “an odd combination” that left him open-minded but confused and deeply unsatisfied in his spirit.
By the age of seven, Keith could play the ukelele, guitar, and piano and was set to become a teen idol after signing a five-year record deal with Decca Records but his career in music failed to launch.
In search of ‘truth’
Thinking that his career in music has failed, as a teen, he ran away from home and in his quest for discovering spiritual truth, true happiness, and peace, he started smoking marijuana and experimented with psychedelics and soon he began to develop an interest in eastern mysticism and the “free love” culture. That was until he was confronted and convicted of his sins by the true ‘Truth’
Keith took the route that most people of his age took then, in search of satisfaction, by getting involved in the culture of ‘free love’ and doing drugs. But the satisfaction or fulfillment did not last any longer than a day or two.
In an interview he gave in 1978, he could be heard saying, ” In all my searchings, I saw that all these people [other religions and teachers] were pointing to Jesus. They’re going, well yeah!, Jesus is one of the ways but we’re one of the ways and they wouldn’t all agree on anything except that Jesus was one of the ways……And I went, well, that kind of eliminates everybody, they all say he’s cool and He says He’s the only one [John 14:6] that’s going to get you there so I guess I’m safe, so I started praying to Jesus.”
He admitted that everything was an intellectual experience to him, even after he started to follow Christ. His heart was full of pride and he was unable to accept fully that Jesus was 100% God in flesh, which was taught to him as ‘blasphemy’. For him, Jesus was still some ‘guru’ who could be God. The hypocrisy he saw in the Church was also another factor that prevented him from committing fully to Jesus, he said.
However, one day, as he was walking down the street, he had an epiphany. In his words, “I remember one day in the summer of 75 walking down the street and looking up and going all right Jesus I buy it, you’re God and everything snap bang just like that…”
“……I prayed to him and he through His grace and mercy and patience wooed me step by step, through the Bible, wooed me, just between my own personal search, and brought me to a place where I was willing to be a religious fool, where I was willing to be a radical, where I was willing to be made a complete uh laughing stock…”
Later, after he came to Christ, Keith and his wife Melody, as new believers, began taking people who needed help, which included recovering drug addicts and prostitutes, bikers, the homeless, and many single pregnant girls needing shelter and safety, into their small home in the suburbs of Los Angeles, in the San Fernando Valley. Their home was later dubbed “The Greenhouse” – a place where people grow.
In 1977, the Greens’ personal outreach became a nonprofit ministry that they called Last Days Ministries and was headed by Keith’s wife until 1996. After she moved to California, she launched the Last Days Ministries Online where all of Green’s writings are free and his music can be found.
Death and Legacy
Green died on July 28, 1982, along with 11 others which included two of his own kids in a plane crash, due to overload, shortly after it took off from a private airstrip. They were going for an aerial tour of the LDM property and the surrounding area.
On November 27, 2001, Green was inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame. He is survived by his wife and two daughters, Rebekah and Rachel.