For He Himself is our peace, who made both groups into one and broke down the barrier of the dividing wall, by abolishing in His flesh the hostility, which is the Law composed of commandments expressed in ordinances, so that in Himself He might make the two one new person, in this way establishing peace; and that He might reconcile them both in one body to God through the cross, by it having put to death the hostility. And He came and preached peace to you who were far away, and peace to those who were near; for through Him we both have our access in one Spirit to the Father. So then you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but you are fellow citizens with the saints, and are of God’s household, having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus Himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole building, being fitted together, is growing into a holy temple in the Lord, in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling of God in the Spirit.

Ephesians 2:14-22

I am fond of Peter’s description of Christians as “strangers and aliens” in this world, sojourners on the path to heaven. Paul’s use of the term is a little different; speaking almost entirely to Gentiles, he refers to their former status as strangers and foreigners. Having once been part of the world and now been brought to peace with God, the Ephesian church went from being at home among their own people in their own land to being something unknown to them.

More than that though, Paul says the Ephesians were part of God’s household, his own sons and daughters (see the previous chapter). So we are not merely given a new country to call our own, but we are part of God’s own family! We’re adopted out of obscurity and alienation into God’s home.

Since we are God’s household, our attitudes necessarily reflect that. We are to treat our brothers and sisters in Christ with love, in the Spirit of unity, through which we are all being built together into the temple of our God.

Ethan Kirl