And what value was there in fighting wild beasts—those people of Ephesus—if there will be no resurrection from the dead?

1 Corinthians 15:32

“…what value was there in fighting wild beasts…?” (1 Corinthians 15:32)

This may come as a surprise, but the humble Australian wombat can be very dangerous! There have been reports of people who have been attacked by wombats for no reason at all – one lady was knocked to the ground by a wombat as she walked her dogs, receiving twenty bites and lacerations to her body. Wombats become extremely aggressive when threatened and will charge at you at a rate of 40 kph so it seems best to avoid a “wild beast” like this if you come across one in the dark!

Paul had his own encounters with “wild beasts”, his way of describing the intense opposition he faced from people when preaching the Gospel in Ephesus.

Ephesus was regarded as the number one regional city of its day, in what is now called Turkey, possessing a good harbour, and intersected by many important trade routes, adding to its prosperity.

It was also the centre of the worship of Diana, a pagan fertility goddess whose temple was regarded as one of the seven wonders of the world. Silversmiths did a roaring trade in the sale of mini shrines and images of Diana and the city was also strongly influenced by occultic and magical practices.

But when Paul preached the Gospel to the Ephesians it led to a riot!

People were delivered from their spiritual bondage, they renounced their occultic practices and the Silversmiths’ trade in Diana paraphernalia suffered a sharp dip in sales.

In response, the Silversmiths organized a riot which caused the city to be in uproar, threatening to break out into violence at any moment. Order was eventually restored, and Paul moved on from Ephesus to preach the Gospel elsewhere.

It is not hard to see why he described the Ephesians as “wild beasts!”

Paul reminds us that he – and we – can live with hope in the face of fierce opposition because Jesus rose from the dead!

You may well be facing “wild beasts” at this very moment – people or circumstances which are trying to tear you and your faith apart. Take courage today!

Jesus has risen! He is alive and with you!

Nothing can separate you from Him or His love – not even the “wild beasts” trying to tear you to shreds!

For further encouragement read Psalm 27!

This may come as a surprise, but the humble Australian wombat can be very dangerous! There have been reports of people who have been attacked by wombats for no reason at all – one lady was knocked to the ground by a wombat as she walked her dogs, receiving twenty bites and lacerations to her body. Wombats become extremely aggressive when threatened and will charge at you at a rate of 40 kph so it seems best to avoid a “wild beast” like this if you come across one in the dark!

Paul had his own encounters with “wild beasts”, his way of describing the intense opposition he faced from people when preaching the Gospel in Ephesus.

Ephesus was regarded as the number one regional city of its day, in what is now called Turkey, possessing a good harbour, and intersected by many important trade routes, adding to its prosperity.

It was also the centre of the worship of Diana, a pagan fertility goddess whose temple was regarded as one of the seven wonders of the world. Silversmiths did a roaring trade in the sale of mini shrines and images of Diana and the city was also strongly influenced by occultic and magical practices.

But when Paul preached the Gospel to the Ephesians it led to a riot!

People were delivered from their spiritual bondage, they renounced their occultic practices and the Silversmiths’ trade in Diana paraphernalia suffered a sharp dip in sales.

In response, the Silversmiths organized a riot which caused the city to be in uproar, threatening to break out into violence at any moment. Order was eventually restored, and Paul moved on from Ephesus to preach the Gospel elsewhere.

It is not hard to see why he described the Ephesians as “wild beasts!”

Paul reminds us that he – and we – can live with hope in the face of fierce opposition because Jesus rose from the dead!

You may well be facing “wild beasts” at this very moment – people or circumstances which are trying to tear you and your faith apart. Take courage today!

Jesus has risen! He is alive and with you!

Nothing can separate you from Him or His love – not even the “wild beasts” trying to tear you to shreds!

For further encouragement read Psalm 27!