So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed.
When Apostle Paul and his team arrived in the city of Ephesus, they preached the Gospel to the Jews first. Paul went into Jewish synagogue and “spake boldly for the space of three months, disputing and persuading the things concerning the kingdom of God” (Acts 19:8). But some of the hearers “were hardened, and believed not, but spake evil of that way before the multitude” (Acts 19:9). He was forced to move out of the synagogue; and teach in the school of Tyrannus. Notwithstanding the hostility, Paul undauntedly preached the Word, influencing the Jews as well as the Greeks in that city and its surrounding region (Acts 19:10).
Another giant obstacle to the Gospel advancement was the city’s enchantment with sorcery and witchcraft. Ephesus was renowned for the statue of Artemis and her temple. The statue had mysterious engravings on the crown, girdle, and feet. Those mystic writings, referred to as “Ephesian scripts”, were considered to have magical power. Sorcery was part of Ephesian culture. Some of the Jews also practiced wizardry. Acts 19:13 reports that “Then certain of the vagabond Jews, exorcists, took upon them to call over them which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, We adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preacheth.” When seven sons of the chief of the Jewish priests, named Sceva, tried to exorcise the demon in the name of Jesus, they were violently attacked by the demonic man. This incident brought much fear among the people.
Nonetheless, the preaching of the Word of God turned many away from their diabolical practices. “And many that believed came, and confessed, and shewed their deeds. Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together, and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver” (Acts 19:18,19). Mightily did the Word of God grow and prevail in that city, where unbelief and fierce demonic activities stood in its way.
In our own day, many dabble with horoscopes, tarot cards, crystal balls, Ouija boards, séances, and other mystic and demonic acivites, which are dangerous to their minds and emotions. If the church is committed to preach the Word faithfully and fervently, we will see some people being delivered from the enticement and enslavement of the devil and unbelief. The preaching of the Word shall prevail all demonic powers!