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 2, “The Message to the Ephesians: Ephesians 4:1,7.”
Peterson leaps to Ephesians 4, verses 1 and 7. Paul tells the Ephesians their lives are to be worthy of Christ, who has given them great gifts. Belief and behavior are to be linked together in our lives. Yet as we view our lives carefully we see many ways belief and behavior are broken apart (Peterson 2010, Loc. 372). Peterson turns his attention to the concept of a worthy life, reasoning that the word ἄξιος in 4:1 is the center word and pivot point for the letter. Based on the potential meaning of “a balance scale” Peterson views a spiritual metaphor. “The items balanced in the Ephesians (sic) scales are God’s calling and human living” (Ibid., Loc. 386). When all is in balance we are living rightly before God. It is important to Peterson that this is a call of God, not an explanation. He calls and we answer (Ibid., Loc. 394). As we respond, Peterson suggests “we soon find ourselves developing the language of intimacy with God” (Ibid., Loc. 420). We also grow in community with others (Ibid., Loc. 430). Peterson says this community draws us into corporate worship, which shapes us and makes us grow (Ibid., Loc. 435). He sees the Christian worship as that which gives order and focus to our life (Ibid., Loc. 459(.
Peterson then discusses the power of Paul’s allusion to Psalm 678 found in Ephesians 4. The worship described in the Psalm is that of attention to the mighty Lord. It is never focused on the people but on God (Ibid., Loc. 490). Peterson goes on to comment on the ideas of God ascending and giving gifts, observing that Paul made changes in the wording to reflect his understanding of Jesus as the fulfillment of the Psalm.