For Erick Erickson, his pen is his pulpit.
In 2016, the political commentator did all he could to warn evangelical Christians — many of whom voted for President Donald Trump — against finding “some level of spiritual salvation in politics.”
His foray into writing from a faith-based angle wasn’t intentional, but something born out of his own developing worldview in the age of Trump.
Erickson told Faithwire it was obvious something was “spiritually amiss” in our society, when his children were “harassed in the grocery store” and he received death threats because he said he wouldn’t be voting for Trump.
As his writing became more overtly Christian, Erickson started fielding preaching requests from local churches — a task he said “creeped me out” because he didn’t have the training to stand behind a pulpit.
So he enrolled at Reformed Theological Seminary in Charlotte, North Carolina, and is now pursuing a doctorate in theology.
Though he hasn’t received many chances to play pastor on Sunday, Erickson said he’s had “several opportunities to preach” in recent years.
“I find it more rewarding than talking about politics these days,” he said.
His cheerful reflections about preaching begged the question: Would Erickson ever consider leaving his political career to become a pastor?
Without much contemplation, Erickson answered.
“You know, I wouldn’t mind one day leaving it all behind and preaching, if that opportunity comes along,” he said. “I like what I do, though, and right now, I really do feel like it is a ministry.”
That’s exactly how Erickson describes his work on radio with WSB and at The Resurgent, the center-right news site he founded in 2016.
When he was in seminary, Erickson recalled a professor telling him he already has a ministry, which he called a “church on the radio.”
Erickson puts a lot of pressure on himself to address the theological ramifications of our political landscape, even recently sharing his feelings on Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg’s attacks on Vice President Mike Pence over his religious beliefs about marriage.
For years, Erickson said, he found himself “conforming my faith to my politics,” a habit he worked hard to break.
“It’s actually harder to do,” he said, “but it also made me realize how often people really are conforming their faith to their politics instead of the other way around. People get really mad at me when I point it out, but I feel obligated to do so.”
As a result of his shift toward faith, the well-known radio host said he’s now willing to talk about “the two things everybody says you can’t talk about,” politics and religion.
While Christianity hasn’t always been at the center of Erickson’s writing, the 43-year-old pundit has always honored his faith. When he started his radio career in 2011, one of the contingencies he gave his producers was that every year his show on Good Friday would be about Good Friday.
“If I can give a tenth of my income to church, I can at least reserve one day a year to do nothing but talk about faith issues on the radio,” he said. “It turns out, it is my most popular show by far.”
True to tradition, this Friday’s episode will be no exception.