biblestudy: Acts (Part Twenty)

Acts 19: Diana (Artemis) Worship; Riot at Ephesus
John W. Ritenbaugh
Given 07-Feb-89; Sermon #BS-AC20; 62 minutes

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While in Ephesus during his third evangelist campaign, Paul entered the stronghold of worship of the mythological, multi-breasted goddess of fertility - Diana or Artemis - whose statue supposedly had fallen from heaven by the hand of Zeus. Initially Paul had to augment the understanding of new converts to Christianity who had received the baptism of John, but who were ignorant of the function of God's Holy Spirit. For several years, Paul used the school of Tyrannus to continue his evangelistic teaching. From this venue, the precedent of anointed cloths for the healing of the sick had its origin. Paul's success at promoting the Way started to undermine the prosperity of vendors promoting the worship of Diana, leading to a riotous assembly (actually a hastily called 'union meeting') in the temple of Diana, a tumult which the city clerk was able to diplomatically quell, giving Paul and his companions room to breathe and regroup.

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