Acts 19:23
And the same time there arose no small stir about that way.
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(23) About that way.—Better, as before, the way. (See Note on Acts 9:2.)

Acts 19:23-27. The same time there arose no small stir Ταραχος ουκ ολιγος, no small tumult, about that way — The way of worshipping God, and securing a happy immortality, which Paul taught. For Demetrius, a silversmith — A man of considerable influence; who made silver shrines for Diana — Greek, ναους αργυρους Αρτεμιδος, literally, silver temples of Diana; that is, silver models, or representations in miniature, of the temple of Diana, and of the image which, as they said, fell down from Jupiter. The tabernacles of Moloch, mentioned Acts 7:43, which the Israelites carried about in the wilderness, seem to have been things of the same kind with Diana’s shrines. See Hammond and Whitby. These little temples, or shrines, were in great request, not only in Ephesus, but in other parts of Asia, as being curious and beautiful ornaments, and used for idolatrous purposes. And in this business, it appears, Demetrius employed a great number of workmen, much to their advantage as well as his own. But, perceiving there would be an end of the trade if Paul’s doctrine were suffered to spread, he called together — Those whom he employed; with the workmen of like occupation — Employed by others; and said, Sirs, ye know that by this craft — This manufacture of silver shrines; we have our wealth — Not only our subsistence, but riches, and, therefore, on no account must we suffer this craft to grow into contempt. It is natural for men to be jealous for that, whether right or wrong, by which they get their wealth: and many have, for this reason alone, set themselves against the gospel of Christ, because it calls men off from those employments which are unlawful, how much wealth soever is gotten by them. Moreover, ye see and hear — That is, ye see what is done in Ephesus, and ye have information of the state of things in other places; that this Paul hath persuaded much people — Greek, ου μονον Εφεσου, αλλα σχεδον πασης της Ασιας, not only of Ephesus, but of all Asia; and turned them away — From the established religion; saying, that they be no gods which are made with hands — And could any truth be more plain and self- evident than this affirmed by Paul? or any reasoning more cogent and convincing than that of the prophet, The workmen made it, therefore it is not god? The first and most genuine notion that we have of God is, that he has his being of himself, and depends upon none; but that all things have their being from him, and their dependance on him: from which it must follow, that those are no gods which are the creatures of men’s fancy, and the work of men’s hands; and yet, what is here said manifestly shows that the contrary opinion did in those ages generally prevail, namely, that there was a real divinity in the images of their supposed deities; though some of the latter heathen have spoken of them just as the Papists do now. So that not only our craft is in danger to be set at naught — To come into disgrace and be ruined, which must be the necessary consequence of Paul’s success; but also that the temple of the great goddess Diana should be despised — No wonder a discourse should make a deep impression, which was edged both by interest and superstition; and her magnificence, or majesty, destroyed — Miserable majesty, which was capable of being thus destroyed! Whom all Asia and the world — That is, the Roman empire; worshippeth — Although under a great variety of titles and characters, as the goddess of hunting, of travelling, child-birth, enchantments, &c.; as Luna, Hecate, Lucina, Proserpine, and so on. Under one or other of which views, she had, undoubtedly, a vast number of votaries. Her temple, raised at the expense of all Asia, was two hundred and twenty years in building, and was four hundred and twenty-five feet long, two hundred and twenty broad, and supported by one hundred and twenty-seven marble pillars, erected by so many kings. It was also adorned with many most beautiful statues, and was considered as one of the seven wonders of the world. It was burned down on the day on which Socrates was poisoned; then again on the night when Alexander the Great was born, by Erostratus, purely that he might be remembered in after ages; and destroyed the last time in the reign of Constantine, pursuant to the edict of that emperor, commanding all the heathen temples to be demolished.

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.No small stir - No little excitement, disturbance, or tumult τάραχος tarachos. Compare Acts 17:4-5. "About that way." Respecting the doctrines of Christianity which Paul preached. See the notes on Acts 9:2; Acts 18:26; Acts 19:9. 23. the same time—of Paul's proposed departure.

about that—"the"

way—So the new religion seemed then to be designated (Ac 9:2; 22:4; 24:14).

And the same time; when all things seemed to have been quiet: so uncertain are the servants of Christ to have any quiet here.

That way; the doctrine of the gospel, as Acts 18:25.

And the same time there arose no small stir about that way. The Syriac version reads, "the way of God"; and the Vulgate Latin version, "the way of the Lord": that is, the Christian religion, and the doctrines and ordinances of the Gospel, which the saints were directed to walk in; and the Ethiopic version renders it, "about this doctrine"; which mightily grew and prevailed, and which such numbers embraced; and how great the stir was about it, and from whence it arose, who began it, and what were the consequences of it, are hereafter related. {7} And the same time there arose no small stir about that way.

(7) Gain cloaked with a show of religion is the very cause why idolatry is strongly and stubbornly defended.

Acts 19:23. ἐγένετο δὲ: on the frequency of the formula in Luke’s writings see Friedrich, p. 13, and above on Acts 4:5.—τάραχος οὐκ ὀλίγος: the same phrase as in Acts 12:18, nowhere else in N.T., for οὐκ ὀλίγος as Lucan see above, Acts 12:18.—τῆς ὁδοῦ: as in Acts 9:2, Acts 19:9, Acts 24:22; much better than to refer it with Weiss merely to the method adopted by Paul in Acts 19:26.

23–41. Heathen Outbreak against St Paul and his Teaching

23. And the same time] Literally, And about that time. There is some gain in accuracy of rendering of these connecting phrases. The literal rendering allows of the lapse of some period between the action of the converts in burning their magic books, and the uproar of the silversmiths. No doubt one movement was in part, but need not have been entirely, a consequence of the other, and the A. V. connects them more closely than is done by the original.

about that way] Render, about the Way, see above on Acts 19:9.

Verse 23. - About that time for the same time, A.V.; concerning the Way for about that way, A.V. (see ver. 9). Acts 19:23The way

See on Acts 9:2.

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