Luma Simms recently wrote Gospel Amnesia for GCD Books and it has helped many people see the gospel in a new way or even for the first time! In preparation for the release of the paperback version of the book, we asked Luma a few questions.
In a sentence, how would you define “gospel amnesia”?
Gospel amnesia is a name for the state of a Christian life that is characterized by marginalization, suppression, or degradation of one’s consciousness of the gospel.
You say in the book that you suffered from gospel amnesia. What did this look like in your life?
Gospel amnesia manifested itself in my life in a variety of ways. One which stands out to me is what I call Progression Mode. I truly believed I had progressed past (matured beyond) the gospel because I thought of the gospel as a simple proposition—Jesus died on the cross for your sins (i.e. justification)—and then we move on. I was obsessed with becoming “more sanctified.” This “sanctification” turned into a long list of extra-biblical life choices I had raised to the level of salvific importance. Another manifestation of gospel amnesia in my life was a heart full of scorn, criticism and derision for any Christian or church which did not believe what I believed, and practice all the secondary issues I had raised to primary importance.
How does the gospel fight against this type of amnesia?
The cross work of Jesus Christ tethers you to the reality of who you are as a human being. At the foot of the cross, arrogance, anger, and angst melt away and our anthropocentric existence breaks down. The beauty at the heart of the gospel is the cross work of Jesus Christ. When the person of Christ, when Jesus, becomes a conscious presence in our life—and this happens as we meditate, dwell, and preach the gospel to ourselves every day—it staves off our tendency toward amnesia.
What unique message does this book have to offer?
Many people talk about “forgetting” the gospel, often in the context of carelessness or lukewarmness. What is unique about Gospel Amnesia is that I also point out the often intentional efforts we in our sinful hearts make that end up pushing the gospel out of our consciousness, and I try to show exactly what that looks like for individuals, churches, denominations, and the Church corporately.
Luma Simms (@lumasimms) is a wife and mother of five delightful children between the ages of 1 and 18. She studied physics and law before Christ led her to become a writer, blogger, and Bible study teacher. She is the author of Gospel Amnesia: Forgetting the Goodness of the News. She blogs regularly at Gospel Grace.