Lead pastor of The City Church in Seattle Judah Smith says Christians "still have more faith in sin than we do in our Savior" but thinks believers can discover freedom from sin by beginning to trust in the power of God's righteousness.
Responding to a question in a recent interview with Relevant Magazine about whether or not humans are good or inherently evil, Smith highlighted that humans are all born in sin, but what Jesus did for humanity adds a new nature that is righteous.
"Corinthians tells us 'he who knew no sin became sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus.' So now I am righteous—not based on what I do or what I've done, but based on what He has done. I am permanently, forever, in right standing with God. And now I am free to live this life that I otherwise would be so far from," Smith told Relevant.
The difficulty for many with this new existence, explains Smith is accepting the power of that righteousness delivered through a relationship with Christ.
"What's difficult is because sin is so real to me. I was a prolific sinner and still struggle with it today. Do I believe that I'm righteous? Or though I'm righteous, do I still go back and believe 'no, see I still sin, so I'm a sinner. That's who I am. I'll always be defined that way,'" he said.
"What it comes down to, to be frank, is we still have more faith in sin than we do in our savior. God is not intimidated by sin. He is in control, and the blood of His son has canceled and conquered the power of sin forever for all who simply believe," he declared.
"When we find that place of just trusting God and realize we are righteous permanently and our past, present, future sins are forgiven, all the sudden there is a contagiousness. We discover things like self-control and morality and purity—these things we've strived for our whole life that don't come by discipline, but come by a real trust in the person of Jesus," he said.