Hold the Faith… Ephesus

I have heard the saying “A day late and a dollar short”. Well, I am a day late in posting this, but the reason was not being a dollar short, but because I am so close to finishing Grow in Grace, I set everything else aside.smiley image

So, here is the blog… a day late

Ancient Ephesus

The book is set here, in the first century AD, because out of ‘reams’ of research, this was the most common location for the Apostle John, after he left Jerusalem… when he was not travelling.

A ‘potted version’ of why I located the Apostle John there…

View from the cross
What our Lord saw from the cross. Painting by Tissot. Brooklyn Museum

“Now there stood by the cross of Jesus, His mother… John 19:25a

When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Dear woman, here is your son” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home. John 19: 26,27 NIV

So why quote this in a post about the Apostle John in Ephesus? Because John took his aunt, Mary, mother of Christ, to his home.

Mary, according to Catholic church beliefs, died in Ephesus. Her ‘house’ became a shrine, as early as the 4th century AD and has been visited by three popes. http://www.ephesus.us/pope_visit_virgin_mary_house.htm

Ephesus in the first century AD

There were no Christian shrines there. In fact, Christians were a ‘new’ and detested group of people. As it says in the ‘blurb’ for Hold the Faith,

“They were hated by the pagans and by the Jews, who saw them as traitors to their beliefs. Mistrusted and persecuted by the Romans because they refused to worship the Roman emperor as god, many were sent to the lions and executed for their beliefs… yet they grew in faith and number. So too did another group, counterfeit Christianity… the beginnings of the various Gnostic opponents.” http://www.holdthefaith.net/

artemisThe statue of Artemis, or Diana as the Romans called her, was a focal point of the worship of the city

“And when the city 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 guardian of the great goddess Diana, and of the image which fell down from Zeus?”
Acts 19: 35

(This was the time of the riot caused by the Apostle Paul’s teaching. The silversmiths were ‘upset’ with him because they were losing trade.)



I could use several books to enumerate the interesting and often amusing facts, stories and tales about ancient Ephesus. Most of them did NOT make it into Hold the Faith. For example… directions to the brothel

Nor did I have any of the characters using the public conveniences.latrine in eph



Finding out about the ancient cities, and how they lived, has certainly improved my understanding of our early Christian ancestors.

Hold the Faith cover imageHold the Faith is available for sale as an e-book on Amazon Kindle http://tinyurl.com/cm8efvy

as well as on Smashwords  https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/284831

For now, back to finishing the next part in the series, Grow in Grace, where the story of the Apostle John and the brethren continue’




3 thoughts on “Hold the Faith… Ephesus

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