You see and hear that not only in Ephesus, but in almost all of Asia, this Paul has persuaded and turned away a considerable number of people, saying that gods made with hands are no gods at all. – Acts 19:26
The Ephesians didn’t have a problem with Paul until Paul’s message began to affect their pocketbooks. As the world-renowned home of the Temple to Artemis, Ephesus also served as a tourist destination for idol worshippers. The ones who made these silver statues saw their income decline as the gospel of Jesus Christ was declared and received by residents and visitors alike. Though certainly framed by some at the time as an attack on their religion, it was really about business. If “The Way” would have remained the quiet and reserved belief of a few, then life could have gone on as usual.
When Christ’s gospel is received by an individual, that person is transformed. If His gospel is received by many in a neighborhood, village, county, province, country, or people group, then everything will reveal this change. Commerce, law, and culture cannot escape the regenerative power of God. A riot cannot stop it, nor can it cause it. Legislation may allow the gospel to go forth, but it will never enable it or hinder it. God’s truth will always destroy Satan’s lie and be assured that it will not go down without a fight.
The lie must still die, and it will, one life at a time.
Will power does not change men. Time does not change men. Christ does. – Henry Drummond