In this passage, we see something of the occult origins of Ephesus. It’s clear to see what a grip it had on peoples’ lives – some, as we read in v13, were completely demon possessed whilst others practiced divination and sorcery. In Paul’s letter to the Ephesians he warns them against ‘principalities, against powers, and against the rulers of the darkness of the world.’ There are many warnings in both the Old and New Testament to avoid the occult. We know that the god of this age, Satan, is a master of deception. Whilst some of these practices might look attractive and even lucrative, as some of the Jews and Greeks discovered, they ultimately lead to misery and separation from our Heavenly Father. Much is the same today! This world offers many practices that are linked to the occult and are designed in such a way as to ruin lives. The good news is that they are beaten. We are told in Colossians 2:15, that he, Jesus, “having disarmed the powers and authorities, made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.”
Isn’t it interesting that when the people truly turned from these practices, “the word of the Lord spread widely and grew in power? (v20)”. Maybe this is a question we should ask ourselves –is anything that we are involved with casting a shadow over our light?