A few days ago, Pastor Bryan Griem viciously belittled foxhole atheists in the Pasadena Sun newspaper. I encouraged readers to let him know how you feel. He didn’t respond to my letter. But he did reply to at least one.
Elizabeth wrote him a letter. You can read it in this comment. But I wanted to focus on this insane response, so I’m not re-posting it here.
Pastor Bryan Griem’s reply:
The thing you did not tell me in this negative letter to me is if your nephew believes in God or not. That was the question to me. “Does it matter if someone believes in God or not when serving the military?” It had nothing to do with the people we send our soldiers to defend. They can be anything, and we still have to be the good guys and do as you say your nephew does, help the Afghani children who need us. Where was I making light of this?
My whole argument is against those who hate God, who pull down our cross monuments to our US soldiers that die serving our country, who want us to remove all the crosses from Arlington Cemetery because they are offensive to the atheist who hates God and essentially everyone who believe in Him. What have any of my comments got to do with good soldiers that serve this country, unless they are like the complainers that hate God and country, and only serve the military to get college money or advancement?
I don’t know your nephew, so how can you chew me out for insulting him? My nephew too serves the United States Marines. I’m proud of him. He serves God too. My father was in the United States Coast Guard. My brothers serve in the California state police departments as a result them. I have nothing but the utmost respect for the military, but I tire of these oddballs who hate God and want witchcraft symbols on their gravestones, or as my answer proposed, a “thumbs down.”
Only the atheist hates God, and the Bible calls him a “fool.” The Bible calls him that because the fool denies what is true and right and good. The Bible is God’s Word, and as a good Christian minister I have not remained like those other cultic ministers on IN THEORY and kissed the Devil’s behind, I have said what is right. If you would leave my church because I echoed the words of Almighty God, then I think it says more about your faith than mine. I do not want to be an antagonist, I do not want to insult the soldiers, but if a soldier hates God and doesn’t like me telling him that God says he’ll end up in hell for his rebellion, that’s kind of too bad, wouldn’t you agree? Should I just say nice things and tell people who are going to hell that they will be fine; don’t worry about that loser Jesus?How is that loving? My job is to give them the truth and let the Holy Spirit work within them to save them. Everyone of us is lost without Jesus Christ. If you can attend church and say that’s untrue, then I doubt you are truly Christian. Again, that is not to insult you, it is simply the biblical truth. I’m not in this to be popular with you or people who don’t want preachers to actually say that people must be saved, I just say it and let the chips fall where they may. I have not been mean to anyone of other religions, but I admit in this last article I was hard on those who openly hate god and define themselves as “atheist.” If that is their position, be they soldiers, nephews, or boy-scouts, they are offensive to our Holy God and to the whole of his people (all of Christianity). Tell me where I am wrong in this. Show me a passage of Scripture that says the atheist who dies is just fine having rejected God. Do you believe that? Is your nephew an unbeliever? If he is, thank him for me that he serves our country, then tell him with all seriousness of life and death, that he must serve God and accept Jesus Christ as savior. If you do not, then his destiny will be on your head, not mine.
The rare double fail
Listen, Bryan. No atheist ‘hates god’. Your breakdown of the word atheist is simply wrong. The prefix “a” doesn’t mean ‘against’, it means ‘without’. The prefix for ‘against’ is “anti”.
But your use of the term “anti-theist” would still be wrong, because you don’t know what the word “theist” means either. Kind of embarrassing for a preacher. Theism is the belief that there is one or more god. Atheism is the lack of such belief.
Do you hate Zeus? Ra? Set? Ares? Anubis? No. You simply lack belief in their existence, so why would you hate them? How could you even hate them?
It makes sense that you’d be wrong about two parts of a single word. You always came off as a two-scoops type of guy.
If anybody else gets a reply, please let me know. This man is too cowardly to answer mine.