Act 19:21-34 Now after these events Paul resolved in the Spirit to pass through Macedonia and Achaia and go to Jerusalem, saying, “After I have been there, I must also see Rome.” (22) And having sent into Macedonia two of his helpers, Timothy and Erastus, he himself stayed in Asia for a while.
(23) About that time there arose no little disturbance concerning the Way. (24) For a man named Demetrius, a silversmith, who made silver shrines of Artemis, brought no little business to the craftsmen. (25) These he gathered together, with the workmen in similar trades, and said, “Men, you know that from this business we have our wealth. (26) And you see and hear that not only in Ephesus but in almost all of Asia this Paul has persuaded and turned away a great many people, saying that gods made with hands are not gods. (27) And there is danger not only that this trade of ours may come into disrepute but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis may be counted as nothing, and that she may even be deposed from her magnificence, she whom all Asia and the world worship.”
(28) When they heard this they were enraged and were crying out, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” (29) So the city was filled with the confusion, and they rushed together into the theater, dragging with them Gaius and Aristarchus, Macedonians who were Paul’s companions in travel. (30) But when Paul wished to go in among the crowd, the disciples would not let him. (31) And even some of the Asiarchs, who were friends of his, sent to him and were urging him not to venture into the theater. (32) Now some cried out one thing, some another, for the assembly was in confusion, and most of them did not know why they had come together. (33) Some of the crowd prompted Alexander, whom the Jews had put forward. And Alexander, motioning with his hand, wanted to make a defense to the crowd. (34) But when they recognized that he was a Jew, for about two hours they all cried out with one voice, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!”
As we observe what is happening in our own nation today, we see regular replays of Paul’s experience at Ephesus. Think about it. The pagan world had its religion – they were worshippers of Artemis. And they benefitted financially, socially, and (they believed) spiritually from the worship of this idol made by their own hands. The made and sold little gods made of silver and no doubt all the other trinkets that tourists would buy. People could pilgrimage to Ephesus, see the great goddess image, and be assured by her priests that they would be blessed (if of course they dropped some coins in the kettle).
This religion, as we see in the account above, was absolutely intolerant. No one was to speak of any other God. No one was to turn away from the woke Artemis doctrines. That would be to upset the apple cart, threaten the coffers, and bring the wrath of the goddess down upon the city. This religion was enforced overtly and covertly and everyone there knew that to depart from the party line would invite being ostracized from society.
The Apostle John tells us that the spirit of the antichrist is behind all of this kind of thing. Satan is the evil one who promotes these strongholds and sets the world against Christ. And he is the one who enrages those he owns against Christ’s people. When the light of the gospel of Christ comes, the darkness hates it and does all it can to extinguish it. That is what happened at Ephesus, and that is what is happening in our own day. Anyone who speaks contrary to the doctrinal lies of the woke mob is attacked with murderous rage.
Did you ever wonder where these doctrines originate? Who is orchestrating it all? Why is the current woke -isms book so consistent among people who never even met one another? Who is pulling the strings? I can tell you. It is Satan. It is his antichrist spirit working through his servants in his continuing effort to establish his kingdom and destroy that of Christ.
But he won’t succeed. He and those who worship him and receive his mark will perish in a moment, at just a Word when Christ comes again.
Psa 2:10-12 Now therefore, O kings, be wise; be warned, O rulers of the earth. (11) Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling. (12) Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and you perish in the way, for his wrath is quickly kindled. Blessed are all who take refuge in him.