“Soon the whole city was filled with confusion. Everyone rushed to the amphitheater, dragging along Gaius and Aristarchus, who were Paul’s traveling companions from Macedonia” (Acts 19:29 NLT)

Paul’s ministry in Ephesus was perhaps his longest and most productive. This Roman city was the jewel of Asia and influenced the whole province. Believers in Ephesus were growing at such a rate that it began to affect the city’s culture. People were confessing their sins and burning their incantation books. And apparently, the business of selling Artemis souvenirs was declining as a result too. Persecution of Christians is often inspired by greed more than belief. Here, the silversmith union rep, Demetrius, started a riot against the Christians in the great amphitheater of Ephesus because of his declining business and reputation. Paul wanted to enter the 25,000 seat stadium to defend his faith, but his friends stopped him. Satan often uses man’s greed and desire for power to bring “confusion” to a city and to undermine the work of the gospel. But God wants to bring light and clarity, so that hearts can repent and respond.