About that time there arose a great disturbance about the Way.1
References for Acts 19:23
A silversmith named Demetrius, who made silver shrines of Artemis, brought in no little business for the craftsmen.
He called them together, along with the workmen in related trades, and said: "Men, you know we receive a good income from this business.2
References for Acts 19:25
And you see and hear how this fellow Paul has convinced and led astray large numbers of people here in Ephesus3 and in practically the whole province of Asia.4 He says that man-made gods are no gods at all.5
References for Acts 19:26
There is danger not only that our trade will lose its good name, but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis will be discredited, and the goddess herself, who is worshiped throughout the province of Asia and the world, will be robbed of her divine majesty."
When they heard this, they were furious and began shouting: "Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!"6
References for Acts 19:28
Soon the whole city was in an uproar. The people seized Gaius7 and Aristarchus,8 Paul's traveling companions from Macedonia,9 and rushed as one man into the theater.
References for Acts 19:29
Paul wanted to appear before the crowd, but the disciples10 would not let him.
References for Acts 19:30
Even some of the officials of the province, friends of Paul, sent him a message begging him not to venture into the theater.
The assembly was in confusion: Some were shouting one thing, some another.11 Most of the people did not even know why they were there.
References for Acts 19:32
The Jews pushed Alexander to the front, and some of the crowd shouted instructions to him. He motioned12 for silence in order to make a defense before the people.
References for Acts 19:33
But when they realized he was a Jew, they all shouted in unison for about two hours: "Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!"13
References for Acts 19:34
The city clerk quieted the crowd and said: "Men of Ephesus,14 doesn't all the world know that the city of Ephesus is the guardian of the temple of the great Artemis and of her image, which fell from heaven?
References for Acts 19:35
Therefore, since these facts are undeniable, you ought to be quiet and not do anything rash.
You have brought these men here, though they have neither robbed temples15 nor blasphemed our goddess.
References for Acts 19:37
If, then, Demetrius and his fellow craftsmen16 have a grievance against anybody, the courts are open and there are proconsuls.17 They can press charges.
References for Acts 19:38
If there is anything further you want to bring up, it must be settled in a legal assembly.
As it is, we are in danger of being charged with rioting because of today's events. In that case we would not be able to account for this commotion, since there is no reason for it."
After he had said this, he dismissed the assembly.