Question: Is money holding us back from obeying Christ?
23 And about that time there arose a great commotion about the Way.
24 For a certain man named Demetrius, a silversmith, who made silver shrines of Diana, brought no small profit to the craftsmen.
25 He called them together with the workers of similar occupation, and said: “Men, you know that we have our prosperity by this trade.
26 “Moreover you see and hear that not only at Ephesus, but throughout almost all Asia, this Paul has persuaded and turned away many people, saying that they are not gods which are made with hands.
27 “So not only is this trade of ours in danger of falling into disrepute, but also the temple of the great goddess Diana may be despised and her magnificence destroyed, whom all Asia and the world worship.”
28 Now when they heard this, they were full of wrath and cried out, saying, “Great is Diana of the Ephesians!”
In summary, while Paul was still in Ephesus, Demetrius, the silversmith who made silver shrines of Diana, caused a commotion regarding the Way.
For a short historical lesson about Ephesus, Diana (Artemis), and the Temple of Diana see the video at this YouTube link below. The video shows current day remains of the temple of Diana and the theater mentioned in the verses following this passage. Sorry for the poor resolution.
Demetrius’ speech provides a great example of the motives within men that cause them to devote themselves to their idols and to be against Christ.
Is money holding us back from obeying Christ?
v25b….Men, you know that we have our prosperity by this trade.
Demetrius was against Paul’s teachings because Demetrius made his living by making idols. The Bible says the love of money is the root of all evil. How about us?
Does our job please God?
Are you doing a job that is harmful to others or is immoral?
Or, are you working so many hours that you are ignoring your wife and your children? Does our retirement goals keep us working so much that they cause us to ignore our service to the true God. Keeping a proper balance is difficult, I often struggle with this question. I recently went to a retirement financial analyst. If you plan to do this, be prepared for a shock. The amount they tell you that you will require in future inflated dollars seems impossible to achieve. On one hand I want to give away more and spend more time serving, but then on the other hand every dime should be saved and a second job should be obtained. I’m still studying this question, but I’ve seen some who unfortunately never make those retirement years. The shortened lives of these individuals must make us consider our ways. I welcome any comments on this subject below.
Are we afraid to lose our idols?
….but also the temple of the great goddess Diana may be despised and her magnificence destroyed, whom all Asia and the world worship.”
Others are against Jesus because they are afraid to lose their idols. Demetrius didn’t want things to change because he enjoyed his Temple. His goddess Diana was “great”. She was “magnificent”. He said the “whole world worshipped her”. Wow. You can see his devotion to her, and why he is against Paul and his doctrine.
What are we devoted to?
Demetrius’ profession and world revolved around Diana. He wasn’t about to give it up without a fight. What or who are we dedicated to that we will not forsake it and obey Jesus? What in this world is more important than obeying the creator of the world? Jesus said that we cannot serve two masters. What is in our heart? What do we talk about? What do we think about that consumes our thoughts? What is holding us back from obeying Him? Let us repent, and let Jesus be our devotion and be our God.
God bless, Bob