This week we're giving away THREE copies of Jesus Is: Find a New Way to Be Human by Judah Smith. Judah and his wife, Chelsea, are the lead pastors of The City Church in Seattle, Washington. Judah and Chelsea have three children: Zion, Eliott, and Grace.
I recently had the chance to ask Judah a few questions about his new book:
Judah: Both in my personal life and as a pastor, I have seen how Jesus changes lives. The gospel is not about rules or rituals—it’s about Jesus. I believe that when people see Jesus for who he really is, he is nearly irresistible. More than anything, that motivated me to write this book. I wanted to present Jesus in a relatable, easy-to-read way that anyone could understand, whether Christian or non-Christian.
I think just about everyone should read Jesus Is _____, but different people will get different things from it. For readers who don’t consider themselves Christians, it is an introduction to the gospel, to grace, and to Jesus. For Christians, it is a picture of what grace means for them as well as a reminder that the world around them needs grace too. I have a particular passion for the younger generation, and that was on my mind as I wrote. But really the book is for anyone who wants to know who Jesus is and how that affects their life.
What do you hope will happen in the reader’s heart and mind after they finish with the book?
I hope they fall more in love with Jesus. I hope they think more about Jesus than about themselves and focus more on grace than on sin. And I hope they enjoy God more. If as Christians our focus is on our failures and weakness, we’ll live in guilt and we’ll end up avoiding God. But if we can keep Jesus at the center, if we can understand his love and grace and believe that he is for us, then everything changes. Holiness becomes fun. Christianity becomes exciting. Life becomes fulfilling.
Your sermon “Jesus is Loving Barabbas” has gone viral. Do you have a common thread in your books and sermons? If so, what is it?
The common thread is making Jesus the focus of everything. I preach and write about many things, but for me it always comes back to Jesus. The essence of Christianity is not holiness, prayer, or self-discipline, although those things are good. The essence of Christianity is Jesus. And ironically, the more we pursue him, the more natural it is to live in holiness, to pray, and to exercise self-discipline. I can’t tell you how excited I am to spend the rest of my life and ministry just getting to know Jesus better.
To win ONE of THREE copies of Jesus Is: Find a New Way to Be Human, leave a comment below. Winners will be selected and announced on Friday.
Congratulations to the winners: Beth P, Laura Hufford, Francis Lynn
What one word describes who Jesus is to you during the season of life you are in?
Are you looking for a fresh Bible study to unlock the wonders of God this fall? Email us at email@example.com and we’ll send you free access to the first full video and PDF lesson of each of Margaret’s DVD Bible studies.