At that time many people became very upset about the Way of Jesus.
References for Acts 19:23
There was a man named Demetrius who made things out of silver. He made silver models of the temple of the goddess Artemis. He brought in a lot of business for the other skilled workers.
One day he called them together. He also called others who were in the same kind of business. "Men," he said, "you know that we make good money from our work.
You have seen and heard what this fellow Paul is doing. He has talked to large numbers of people here in Ephesus. Almost everywhere in Asia Minor he has led people away from our gods. He says that the gods we make are not gods at all.
Our work is in danger of losing its good name. People's faith in the temple of the great goddess Artemis will be weakened. Now she is worshiped through all of Asia Minor and the whole world. But soon she will be robbed of her greatness."
When they heard this, they became very angry. They began shouting, "Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!"
Soon people were making trouble in the whole city. They all rushed into the theater. They dragged Gaius and Aristarchus along with them. These two men had come with Paul from Macedonia.
Paul wanted to appear in front of the crowd. But the believers wouldn't let him.
Some of the officials in Asia Minor were friends of Paul. They sent him a message, begging him not to go into the theater.