Peterson, Eugene H., and Peter Santucci. Practice Resurrection: A Conversation on Growing up in Christ. Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans Pub., 2010. Kindle Electronic Edition.
Chapter 10, “Holiness and the Holy Spirit: Ephesians 4:17-32” Loc. 2120-2316.
Peterson observes Paul’s use of “therefore” at Ephesians 4:1 and again at 4:17 to shift topics. He is making a transition to speak about “us: what we do and the way we do it” (Peterson 2010, Loc. 2131). Yet the focus of our life is always Jesus working in the church by the Holy Spirit (Peterson 2010, Loc. 2138). Peterson compares life in the church to rock climbing, an ascent from earth to heaven. God’s commands are the protective devices without which we have nothing to guide us or to grip (Peterson 2010, Loc. 2159). In this context, Peterson finds reason for the negative command, not to live as Gentiles (Peterson 2010, Loc. 2177). There is a right caution about life in Christ. The world around the Ephesians Christians was full of temptation to sin and to arrogance. This served as a backdrop for the positive commands to follow (Peterson 2010, Loc. 2194). Peterson discusses this in terms of “negative space,” a term artists use to refer to what is absent in a work of art (Peterson 2010, Loc. 2230). The prohibitions of Scripture may well serve to avoid clutter and allow us to see the real picture of our life in Christ. In this life centered upon Jesus, Peterson reminds us, we see the true Triune God (Peterson 2010, Loc. 2251). In the Trinity we learn especially that the God who cannot fit into our categories is very present and personal (Peterson 2010, Loc. 2260). This is especially the role of the Holy Spirit whom Peterson sees indwelling all the commonplace events of life, drawing attention to Jesus (Peterson 2010, Loc. 2300).