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1It was while Apollos was in Corinth that Paul, after passing through the interior, reached Ephesus. Finding some disciples there, 2he said to them,
“Did you receive the holy Spirit when you became believers?”
“No,” they said to him, “we never even heard that there was a holy Spirit.”
3“How then were you baptized?” he asked.
“With John’s baptism,” they answered.
4“John’s baptism was a baptism in token of repentance,” said Paul, “and he told the people to believe in him who was to follow him, that is, in Jesus.”
5When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus, 6and when Paul laid his hands on them, the holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in foreign tongues and with prophetic inspiration. 7There were about twelve of them in all.
8He went to the synagogue there, and for three months spoke confidently, holding discussions and trying to persuade them about the Kingdom of God. 9But as some of them were obstinate and refused to believe, finding fault with the Way before the people, he left them, and withdrew the disciples, and held daily discussions in the lecture-room of Tyrannus. 10This went on for two years, so that everyone who lived in Asia, Greeks as well as Jews, heard the Lord’s message.
11God did such extraordinary wonders by means of Paul, 12that people took to the sick handkerchiefs or aprons he had used, and they were cured of their diseases, and the evil spirits went out of them. 13Some Jews who went from place to place casting out demons tried to use the name of the Lord Jesus in the cases of people who had evil spirits in them, saying,
“I command you in the name of Jesus whom Paul preaches!”
14A Jewish high priest named Sceva had seven sons who were doing this. 15But the evil spirit answered,
“I know Jesus, and I know of Paul, but who are you?”
16And the man in whom the evil spirit was sprang at them, and overpowered them all, with such violence that they ran out of the house tattered and bruised. 17This came to be known to everyone who lived in Ephesus, Greeks as well as Jews, and great awe came over them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus came to be held in high honor. 18Many who became believers would come and openly confess their former practices. 19A number of people who had practiced magic brought out their books and burned them publicly. The value of these was estimated and found to be ten thousand dollars. 20So the Lord’s message went on growing wonderfully in influence and power.
21After these events, Paul, under the Spirit’s guidance, resolved to go to Jerusalem, and to revisit Macedonia and Greece on the way.
“After I have gone there,” he said, “I must see Rome also.”
22He sent two of his assistants, Timothy and Erastus, to Macedonia, while he stayed on for a while in Asia.
23Just at that time a great commotion arose about the Way. 24A silversmith named Demetrius was making large profits for his workmen by the manufacture of silver shrines of Artemis. 25He got the workmen in that and similar trades together, and said to them,
“Men, you know that this business is the source of our prosperity, 26and you see and hear that not only in Ephesus but almost all over Asia, this man Paul has persuaded and drawn away numbers of people, telling them that gods made by human hands are not gods at all. 27There is danger, therefore, not only that this business of ours will be discredited, but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis will be neglected and the magnificence of her whom all Asia and the world worship will be a thing of the past!”
28When they heard this, they became very angry, and cried,
“Great Artemis of Ephesus!”
29So the commotion spread all over the city, and by a common impulse the people rushed to the theater, dragging with them two Macedonians, Gaius and Aristarchus, Paul’s traveling companions. 30Paul wanted to go before the people himself, but the disciples would not allow it. 31Some of the religious authorities also, who were friends of his, sent to him and begged him not to venture into the theater. 32Meanwhile the people were shouting, some one thing and some another, for the meeting was in confusion, and most of them had no idea why they had come together. 33Some of the crowd called upon Alexander, as the Jews had pushed him to the front, and he made a gesture with his hand and was going to speak in defense of them to the people. 34But when they saw that he was a Jew, a great shout went up from them all, and they cried for two hours,
“Great Artemis of Ephesus!”
35At last the recorder quieted the mob and said,
“Men of Ephesus, who in the world does not know that the city of Ephesus is the guardian of the temple of the great Artemis, and of the image that fell down from the sky? 36So as these facts are undeniable, you must be calm, and not do anything reckless. 37For you have brought these men here, though they have not been guilty of disloyalty nor uttered any blasphemy against our goddess. 38If Demetrius and his fellow-craftsmen have a charge to bring against anyone, there are the courts and the governors; let them take legal action. 39But if you require anything beyond that, it must be settled before the regular assembly. 40For we are in danger of being charged with rioting in connection with today’s events, though there is really nothing about this commotion that we will not be able to explain.”
41With these words he dismissed the assembly.
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