Passage: Acts 19, 20 (RSV)

Acts 19

1While Apol'los was at Corinth, Paul passed through the upper country and came to Ephesus. There he found some disciples.
2And he said to them, "Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?" And they said, "No, we have never even heard that there is a Holy Spirit."
3And he said, "Into what then were you baptized?" They said, "Into John's baptism."
4And Paul said, "John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, Jesus."
5On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.
6And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Spirit came on them; and they spoke with tongues and prophesied.
7There were about twelve of them in all.
8And he entered the synagogue and for three months spoke boldly, arguing and pleading about the kingdom of God;
9but when some were stubborn and disbelieved, speaking evil of the Way before the congregation, he withdrew from them, taking the disciples with him, and argued daily in the hall of Tyran'nus.
10This continued for two years, so that all the residents of Asia heard the word of the Lord, both Jews and Greeks.
11And God did extraordinary miracles by the hands of Paul,
12so that handkerchiefs or aprons were carried away from his body to the sick, and diseases left them and the evil spirits came out of them.
13Then some of the itinerant Jewish exorcists undertook to pronounce the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, "I adjure you by the Jesus whom Paul preaches."
14Seven sons of a Jewish high priest named Sceva were doing this.
15But the evil spirit answered them, "Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are you?"
16And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, mastered all of them, and overpowered them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.
17And this became known to all residents of Ephesus, both Jews and Greeks; and fear fell upon them all; and the name of the Lord Jesus was extolled.
18Many also of those who were now believers came, confessing and divulging their practices.
19And a number of those who 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.
20So the word of the Lord grew and prevailed mightily.
21Now after these events Paul resolved in the Spirit to pass through Macedo'nia and Acha'ia and go to Jerusalem, saying, "After I have been there, I must also see Rome."
22And having sent into Macedo'nia two of his helpers, Timothy and Eras'tus, he himself stayed in Asia for a while.
23About that time there arose no little stir concerning the Way.
24For a man named Deme'trius, a silversmith, who made silver shrines of Ar'temis, brought no little business to the craftsmen.
25These he gathered together, with the workmen of like occupation, and said, "Men, you know that from this business we have our wealth.
26And you see and hear that not only at Ephesus but almost throughout all Asia this Paul has persuaded and turned away a considerable company of people, saying that gods made with hands are not gods.
27And there is danger not only that this trade of ours may come into disrepute but also that the temple of the great goddess Ar'temis may count for nothing, and that she may even be deposed from her magnificence, she whom all Asia and the world worship."
28When they heard this they were enraged, and cried out, "Great is Ar'temis of the Ephesians!"
29So the city was filled with the confusion; and they rushed together into the theater, dragging with them Ga'ius and Aristar'chus, Macedo'nians who were Paul's companions in travel.
30Paul wished to go in among the crowd, but the disciples would not let him;
31some of the A'si-archs also, who were friends of his, sent to him and begged him not to venture into the theater.
32Now some cried one thing, some another; for the assembly was in confusion, and most of them did not know why they had come together.
33Some of the crowd prompted Alexander, whom the Jews had put forward. And Alexander motioned with his hand, wishing to make a defense to the people.
34But when they recognized that he was a Jew, for about two hours they all with one voice cried out, "Great is Ar'temis of the Ephesians!"
35And when the town clerk had quieted the crowd, he said, "Men of Ephesus, what man is there who does not know that the city of the Ephesians is temple keeper of the great Ar'temis, and of the sacred stone that fell from the sky?
36Seeing then that these things cannot be contradicted, you ought to be quiet and do nothing rash.
37For you have brought these men here who are neither sacrilegious nor blasphemers of our goddess.
38If therefore Deme'trius and the craftsmen with him have a complaint against any one, the courts are open, and there are proconsuls; let them bring charges against one another.
39But if you seek anything further, it shall be settled in the regular assembly.
40For we are in danger of being charged with rioting today, there being no cause that we can give to justify this commotion."
41And when he had said this, he dismissed the assembly.

Acts 20

1After the uproar ceased, Paul sent for the disciples and having exhorted them took leave of them and departed for Macedo'nia.
2When he had gone through these parts and had given them much encouragement, he came to Greece.
3There he spent three months, and when a plot was made against him by the Jews as he was about to set sail for Syria, he determined to return through Macedo'nia.
4Sop'ater of Beroe'a, the son of Pyrrhus, accompanied him; and of the Thessalo'nians, Aristar'chus and Secun'dus; and Ga'ius of Derbe, and Timothy; and the Asians, Tych'icus and Troph'imus.
5These went on and were waiting for us at Tro'as,
6but we sailed away from Philip'pi after the days of Unleavened Bread, and in five days we came to them at Tro'as, where we stayed for seven days.
7On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread, Paul talked with them, intending to depart on the morrow; and he prolonged his speech until midnight.
8There were many lights in the upper chamber where we were gathered.
9And a young man named Eu'tychus was sitting in the window. He sank into a deep sleep as Paul talked still longer; and being overcome by sleep, he fell down from the third story and was taken up dead.
10But Paul went down and bent over him, and embracing him said, "Do not be alarmed, for his life is in him."
11And when Paul had gone up and had broken bread and eaten, he conversed with them a long while, until daybreak, and so departed.
12And they took the lad away alive, and were not a little comforted.
13But going ahead to the ship, we set sail for Assos, intending to take Paul aboard there; for so he had arranged, intending himself to go by land.
14And when he met us at Assos, we took him on board and came to Mityle'ne.
15And sailing from there we came the following day opposite Chi'os; the next day we touched at Samos; and the day after that we came to Mile'tus.
16For Paul had decided to sail past Ephesus, so that he might not have to spend time in Asia; for he was hastening to be at Jerusalem, if possible, on the day of Pentecost.
17And from Mile'tus he sent to Ephesus and called to him the elders of the church.
18And when they came to him, he said to them: "You yourselves know how I lived among you all the time from the first day that I set foot in Asia,
19serving the Lord with all humility and with tears and with trials which befell me through the plots of the Jews;
20how I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, and teaching you in public and from house to house,
21testifying both to Jews and to Greeks of repentance to God and of faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.
22And now, behold, I am going to Jerusalem, bound in the Spirit, not knowing what shall befall me there;
23except that the Holy Spirit testifies to me in every city that imprisonment and afflictions await me.
24But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may accomplish my course and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.
25And now, behold, I know that all you among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom will see my face no more.
26Therefore I testify to you this day that I am innocent of the blood of all of you,
27for I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole counsel of God.
28Take heed 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 the blood of his own Son.
29I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock;
30and from among your own selves will arise men speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them.
31Therefore be alert, remembering that for three years I did not cease night or day to admonish every one with tears.
32And 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.
33I coveted no one's silver or gold or apparel.
34You yourselves know that these hands ministered to my necessities, and to those who were with me.
35In all things I have shown you that by so toiling one must help the weak, remembering the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, `It is more blessed to give than to receive.'"
36And when he had spoken thus, he knelt down and prayed with them all.
37And they all wept and embraced Paul and kissed him,
38sorrowing most of all because of the word he had spoken, that they should see his face no more. And they brought him to the ship.

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