Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: NOISE (05/03/18)
- TITLE: Riots and Sometimes Revival
By Trudy Newell
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The power of God’s Word stirred the city of Ephesus. Paul and his team marveled at the way God was working. It started when some Jewish disciples were introduced to the dynamite of the Holy Spirit. Before, they had only known the baptism of John, What a differnence!
The great contention about the ‘Way’ kicked Paul out of the synagogue. He moved his discipleship training to the nearby school of Tyrannus. The daily instruction made a huge impact in the lives of these new believers.
But trouble loomed; for many put their faith in Christ because of the mighty work of God. People were getting right with God and their whole lives were changed. They burned their magic books and left their false gods behind. It cost them thousand of dollars, and they felt the economic pinch. Yet there was great rejoicing among the new believers. Everyone in the city heard the Word of God.
Opposition came at once. The sliver craftsmen stirred up a commotion about the ‘Way’. Making silver images of Diana, the local goddess, brought in a huge profit.
Demetris called the Silversmith Union together.
“Look, we’d better do something fast. This troublemaker, Paul, has created a problem wherever he goes. He claims that gods made of silver aren’t gods at all. Many people have listened. Now they no longer buy our images.”
He quieted a wave of protests and continued, “We’re in serious trouble. We could lose our businesses, not to mention our reputation. But the dishonor to the great goddess Diana shames us. All Asian and the whole world knows her great magnificence.”
A torrent of angry cries could be heard for miles.
They chanted, “Great is Diana of the Ephesians!” as they stormed into the theater. They were followed by a confused crowd who grabbed some of Paul’s team. The others got safely away, taking Paul with them.
The chaos and confusion rose to a peak as some shouted one thing and some another. The majority had no clue what this was all about.
Paul’s friend, Alexander, tried to speak, but the frantic chanting drowned out anything he said.
The city clerk arrived and settled the mob. His voice was heard above the soft murmuring of the crowd.
“Ephesians, what’s the problem? Why are your creating this uproar? Everyone knows the temple of the great goddess Diana is here. They know about the image that came down from heaven. Be sensible!
“Settle down. These men haven’t desecrated the temple of Diana. They haven’t blasphemed her. If the Silversmith Union has a legitimate case, the courts are open. Go settle it lawfully. If you have some other problem to solve, call for a General Assembly so it can be discussed properly. There is no excuse for this commotion! All of you, please go home”
With that, the crowd slowly dispersed. The murmuring continued.
Alexander found the other members of the team. After a time of praise, they all relaxed and continued to thank God for his deliverance.
Paul smiled at Alexander, “We tend to stir up riots and sometimes a revival. This time we had both. It’s worth it!”
“But Paul, my ears are still ringing from all that noise. Do you want me to go deaf?”
Laughter filled the room.
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