Jon Steingard, former leader of the Christian group Hawk Nelson, recently announced that he no longer believes in God. The other members of the band – Daniel Biro, Micah Keuper and Davis Niacarirs — released a statement offering their love and support.
“Our mission as Hawk Nelson has always been to inspire and encourage all people with the truth that God is FOR them and not against them,” they wrote. “In that message’s most simple and purest form, that THEY matter. “So now we turn that truth toward one of our own. That God is still FOR Jon & he still matters. Why? Because that truth doesn’t change just because we question it.”
The men then encouraged people to treat each other with love no matter where they are in their faith journey. “WE are called to Love one another unconditionally, as God loves us. We should also encourage and challenge one another in our Faith, seeking truth,” they wrote.
Steingard had announced his decision on social media.
“After growing up in a Christian home, being a pastor’s kid, playing and singing in a Christian band, and having the word ‘Christian’ in front of most of the things in my life – I am now finding that I no longer believe in God,” he wrote in an Instagram post. “It didn’t happen overnight or all of a sudden. It’s been more like pulling on the threads of a sweater, and one day discovering that there was no more sweater left,” he continued. “I am stunned by the number of people in visible positions within Christian circles that feel the same way as I do. Like me, they fear losing everything if they’re open about it.”
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I’ve been terrified to post this for a while – but it feels like it’s time for me to be honest. I hope this is not the end of the conversation, but the beginning. I hope this is encouraging to people who might feel the same but are as afraid to speak as I am. I want to be open. I want to be transparent with you all – and also open to having my heart changed in the future. I am not looking for a debate at all – just a chance to share my story in the hopes some good can come from it. I love you all.
Steingard said that although he is struggling to believe that God exists, he hopes He actually does.
“I am open to the idea that God is there. I’d prefer if he was. I suspect if he is there, he is very different than what I was taught. I know my parents pray that God reveals himself to me. If he’s there, I hope he does,” he said.
Observers who are familiar with Steingard say his declaration is more about the type of Christianity he was raised in rather than the existence of God himself which brought on the doubts.
–Alan Goforth | Metro Voice