Imagine trying to evangelize in a major city that is extremely engrossed in false religion centering around a female deity! That is what it was like for Paul when he went into Ephesus, but that’s not all! Paul stirred up such a commotion by speaking out God’s truth, that the city broke out in a riot. Various idol makers got mad because their livelihood took a financial hit and became jeopardized. During the riot, an important detail about Artemis of the Ephesians surfaces! It was commonly, but wrongly, believed there that the image of their pagan female deity, Artemis, fell from heaven:
The city clerk quieted the crowd and said: “Men of Ephesus, 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? Therefore, since these facts are undeniable, you ought to be quiet and not do anything rash.” (Acts 19:35,36)
The Image That Fell From Heaven Was From Hell
An important spiritual nugget is found in Acts 19:35. Somehow the devil got the rumor started that the idolatrous image of Artemis fell from heaven to give her idolatrous image and the belief surrounding her more credibility. It was undeniable to them! Perhaps the idol makers started the rumor for their own businesses. We don’t know. Nonetheless, Paul did write elsewhere that the devil masquerades as an angel of light (2 Cor. 11:14). He does that to deceive. Religious deception is the devil’s specialty! That is what was happening in Ephesus, in Paul’s day:
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. (Acts 19:27)
Since her image and divine majesty is associated with idolatry and idolatry destroys one spiritually, then the image of Artemis, which undeniably fell from heaven, really came from the devil, not God. The word of God was and is a direct clash with idolatry. It was not consistent or tolerant of it. It was dogmatically antithetical.
Mythical Artemis (or Diana) was a Female Virgin
Folks, hold on to your seats! In Catholicism, their mythical fabricated perpetual virgin Mary is also termed Mother of God. She was pronounced that at the Council of Ephesus in 431. That is the same exact city where Artemis (Diana), the female pagan virgin deity, was worshiped and where the common belief back then was that her image fell from heaven! This helps us see how the mythical virgin Mary of Catholicism evolved into its present pagan and destructive image. Apparently, the same demonic influence behind Artemis, which adversely influenced Ephesus in Paul’s day, was still promoting such virgin female pagan worship in 431. The main difference is her name was changed to Mary, the so-called virgin mother of God, which prominently exists today in Roman Catholicism. That Mary (the fabricated Mary of Catholicism) is just as much a religious myth as Artemis of the Ephesians. There is absolutely no basis for either of them in Scripture. In spite of this though, many Catholics are just as zealous for their virgin Mary, who they think is co-reigning in heaven with Jesus, as the Ephesians back then were for their virgin Artemis. Though not official, many Catholics today seem to act as though they think Mary’s image fell from heaven too! They kiss and pray to their Mary before her statue to their own spiritual harm. Catholics even consecrate themselves to that Mary rather than Jesus. Paul’s appropriate message stands, Man-made gods are no gods at all. (Acts 19:26) [Please send this as a blessing to a Catholic friend or acquaintance.]