Chapter 6, “Gaza Notes” (Loc. 1229)
Peterson observes from the encounter between Philip and the Ethiopian the work of pastoral care. The two have little in common but the Ethiopian is seeking truth. Philip is God’s messenger of the truth - all Scripture points to Jesus. Philip’s work begins in Acts 8:30 with the subtle difference between reading and understanding. Philip is then called (Loc. 1240) not only to explain but to guide the Ethiopian. Is Philip willing to go on a journey? The true pastor is.
Peterson’s conclusion is that “Reading Scripture is not, it would seem, an autonomous activity” (Loc. 1260). The conversation includes the human writer, Jesus, and any people present.
This kind of interactive reading of Scripture brings us into an encounter with the living God. It is not just another thing t do. “But the very frequency of pastoral reading in Scripture mitigates its radical strangeness in our consciousness, the crisis conditions that are provoked in us whenever we enter its pages” (Loc. 1283). Peterson cautions against allowing the Scripture to become commonplace.