Church in Ephesus

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City of Ephesus

Founded by the Amazons about 2000 B.C
Ephesus was once the capital of Asia Minor state of the Roman Empire.
Ephesus means desirable
3rd largest Library (Library of Celus) in Ancient World (SHOW PIC)
Ephesus derived its greatness from two sources, commercial trade (sea-port city) and religion.
During the Roman Period it was a center for the mother goddess worship, known to the Greeks as Artemis and to the Romans as Diana - which is one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. (SHOW PIC)
One of the oldest advertisements in antiquity pointing to brothels of Ephesus still can be seen in Ephesus.
Worship in the Temple was comprised of the burning of incense and the playing of flute music as a result of which the people reached an emotional frenzy in which shameless sexual orgies were engaged. These immoral practices of the priestesses and the merchants hawking silver shrines made it a difficult place to preach the Gospel.

The History of the Church in Ephesus

On Paul’s second mission tour, he visited Ephesus after leaving Corinth, and evidently planted the church there
Acts 19:8–10 ESV
And he entered the synagogue and for three months spoke boldly, reasoning and persuading them about the kingdom of God. But when some became stubborn and continued in unbelief, speaking evil of the Way before the congregation, he withdrew from them and took the disciples with him, reasoning daily in the hall of Tyrannus. This continued for two years, so that all the residents of Asia heard the word of the Lord, both Jews and Greeks.
Paul spent his time weeding out false doctrines and pagan practices.
Acts 19:18–20 ESV
Also many of those who were now believers came, confessing and divulging their practices. And a number of those who had practiced magic arts brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all. And they counted the value of them and found it came to fifty thousand pieces of silver. So the word of the Lord continued to increase and prevail mightily.
Demetrius the craftsmen cause an uproar
12 Disciples of John the Baptist

Nurturing and Watering

Acts 20:28–32 ESV
Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood. I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them. Therefore be alert, remembering that for three years I did not cease night or day to admonish every one with tears. And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified.
Acquilla and Priscilla (Acts 18:25)
Timothy (1 Tim.1)
How did they do - What is Jesus’ assessment?
Revelation 2:1–7 ESV
“To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: ‘The words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand, who walks among the seven golden lampstands. “ ‘I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false. I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name’s sake, and you have not grown weary. But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent. Yet this you have: you hate the works of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.’
We have no way of knowing whether they corrected their problem and later were poisoned by some false doctrine,
The church died sometime during the second century.
It evidently passed into apostasy as it is known in later centuries as a leading city for the councils of the early Roman church.
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