Acts 19:26
(26) Not alone at Ephesus, but almost throughout all Asia.--The language of Demetrius, though, perhaps, betraying the exaggeration of alarm, confirms the statement of Acts 19:10 as to the extent of St. Paul's labours. Pliny, in his Epistle to Trajan (Epp. x. 96), uses language, half a century later, which is hardly less strong, speaking of "deserted temples," "worship neglected," "hardly a single purchaser" (rarissimus emptor) found for sacrificial victims.

Saying that they be no gods, which are made with hands.--The wrath of the mob-leader makes him virtually commit himself to the opposite statement that the idol is the god. Philosophers might speak of symbolism and ideal representations, but this was, and always has been, and will be, the conclusion of popular idolatry.

Verse 26. - And for moreover, A.V. We have here a wonderful testimony from an enemy to the power and efficacy of St. Paul's labors. Asia, here and in ver. 22, etc., means Proconsular Asia, of which Ephesus was the chief city. That they be no gods, etc. This is an incidental proof that St. Paul's success at Ephesus lay chiefly among the heathen, since we know from Acts 14:15-17; Acts 17:23, 24, etc., that this was exactly his style of preaching to Gentiles, quite different from his method with Jews.

19:21-31 Persons who came from afar to pay their devotions at the temple of Ephesus, bought little silver shrines, or models of the temple, to carry home with them. See how craftsmen make advantage to themselves of people's superstition, and serve their worldly ends by it. Men are jealous for that by which they get their wealth; and many set themselves against the gospel of Christ, because it calls men from all unlawful crafts, however much wealth is to be gotten by them. There are persons who will stickle for what is most grossly absurd, unreasonable, and false; as this, that those are gods which are made with hands, if it has but worldly interest on its side. The whole city was full of confusion, the common and natural effect of zeal for false religion. Zeal for the honour of Christ, and love to the brethren, encourage zealous believers to venture into danger. Friends will often be raised up among those who are strangers to true religion, but have observed the honest and consistent behaviour of Christians.Moreover, ye see and hear,.... Demetrius appeals to their senses of seeing and hearing; they saw what was done in their own city, and they had heard how things were elsewhere; they might believe what they saw with their eyes, and they had reason to depend upon the report which was brought to their ears:

that not alone at Ephesus, but almost throughout all Asia, this Paul hath persuaded and turned away much people; by "all Asia" is meant Ionia, that part of Asia, of which Ephesus was the metropolis; from whence great multitudes came to Ephesus, and heard Paul in the school of Tyrannus, Acts 19:10 so that not only many in the city of Ephesus, but even in almost every city and town of Asia, had heard and received the Gospel preached by Paul; of whom Demetrius speaks very contemptibly, as if he was a worthless vagabond fellow, who had the art of persuading and deluding people; he prevailed upon them to believe in Christ whom he preached, and turned away much people from the worshipping of idols, to the living God:

saying, that they be no gods which are made with hands; such as was their Diana, and the images of her, which these workmen made; and consequently if his doctrine prevailed, as it had much already, their trade would be worth nothing, and their livelihood be lost, which was the grand thing they had in view; for one would think they could never believe themselves, that the images they made were really gods; but whether they did or not, certain it is, that the apostle's doctrine was true, that such could not be gods, and which agrees both with reason and revelation.

Acts 19:25
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