Acts 19:23-Acts 20:3 - A Riot In Ephesus

23 Now just at this time, there arose no small commotion concerning the Way. 24 There was a man named Demetrius, a silversmith, who made silver shrines of Diana, and brought rich profit to his workmen. 25 He gathered them together with others of like occupation, and said: "Men, you know that by this business we make our money. 26 "And you see and hear that not only in Ephesus, but almost throughout all of Asia, this fellow Paul has persuaded and turned away many people, by telling them that they are no gods at all who are made with hands. 27 "So there is danger not only that our trade come into disrepute, but also that the temple of the great goddess Diana will be brought into disrepute, and that she herself may even be deposed from her magnificence, she whom all Asia and the world now worships."

28 After listening to this they were filled with rage, and cried out again and again, saying, 29 The city was filled with commotion. They rushed like one man into the theater, dragging with them Gaius and Aristarchus, Macedonians, Paul's companions in travel. 30 When Paul wanted to go in to the people, the disciples would not let him, 31 and some of the Asiarchs, too, who were his friends, sent word to him repeatedly, entreating him not to venture into the theater. 32 Now some were shouting one thing, some another, for the assembly was in an uproar, and the majority had no idea why they were come together. 33 And they brought Alexander out of the crowd, whom the Jews had pushed forward. And Alexander, motioning with his hand, would have made a defense to the people, 34 but when they saw that he was a Jew they all, with one voice, for about two hours, shouted,

35 At length the recorder got them quiet. "Men of Ephesus," he said, "who here does not know that the city of the Ephesians is temple-guardian of the great Diana and of the image which fell down from Jupiter? 36 "Since these facts cannot be gainsaid, you ought to be calm and do nothing reckless. 37 "For you have brought these men here, who are neither robbers of temples nor blasphemers of our goddess. 38 If then Demetrius and his craftsmen have a grievance against any one, the courts are open and there are the proconsuls; let them accuse one another. 39 But if you desire anything further, it must be settled in the regular assembly. 40 For indeed we are in danger of being accused in regard to this day's riot, since there is no cause for it, nor shall we be able to give account for this disorderly gathering." 41 With these words he dismissed the assembly.

1 After the uproar had ceased, Paul sent for the disciples and, after embracing them, bade them farewell, and started for Macedonia. 2 And when he had passed through those districts and encouraged the disciples in many addresses, he came into Greece where he spent three months. 3 Just as he was about to set sail for Syria, the Jews laid a plot against him, and he determined to return through Macedonia.