The lead singer of a well-known Christian band no longer believes in God.
Hawk Nelson frontman Jon Steingard published a lengthy Instagram post last week, explaining he has, over time, lost complete faith in the existence of God — a shift he admitted he’s been “terrified” to share.
The “Drops in the Ocean” singer-songwriter compared his turn away from belief to the unraveling of a sweater, writing he has been undoing much of his faith over the past few years, even as he was continuing to perform.
“So if you’re someone who follows me because of Hawk Nelson, and my involvement in Christian music, you are probably thinking, ‘Wait — were you lying to me the whole time? Were you just pretending to be a Christian? What about all those songs you wrote? Did you mean those?’” Steingard wrote. “The short answer is that I was not lying. I did believe those things at the time. I may have been pulling on the threads of the sweater, but there was still some sweater left back then.”
For Steingard, faith has always played an integral role in life.
He grew up as a pastor’s kid and is married to a woman, Jess, whose father is also still a pastor. For most of his life, Steingard has had the word “Christian” in front of most of the things he’s done.
The 36-year-old singer said it is nerve-racking to open up about his unbelief, because doing so jeopardizes his relationships both professionally and personally. He admitted he fell into a deep depression when he first began to realize he no longer believed God existed, a conclusion he said he still hopes is wrong.
Several of the Christian artists Steingard has spent years around responded lovingly to his post, encouraging him and offering to speak with the musician about faith, if he were to be interested in doing so.