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A Visit to Ephesus

As you know, I've been scanning my late father-in-law's slides.  It is a time-consuming job, but interesting at the same time.  Thankfully he had written a brief description on each slide, otherwise we wouldn't know what any of the pictures were.  While they were in Turkey working from 1959-1962, my father-in-law was able to travel around Turkey a fair bit and was able to visit several historical sites.  One of the places he visited was Ephesus.

Ephesus is, of course, mentioned in the Bible.  The book of Ephesians was written to believers in Ephesus and Revelation 2:1-7 addresses the church at Ephesus.  Ephesus was most widely known for its temple to the goddess Artemis. (I don't know if these pictures are actually of the Temple of Artemis or not...)

Browsing through the book of Ephesians after seeing these pictures adds new meaning to some of Paul's explanations to the believers there, especially these verses in chapter 2:  "Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord.  And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit."  (v. 19-22)

They had been set free from idol worship and no longer needed to visit the Temple of Artemis.  Instead, the temple was now the group of believers, with Jesus himself as the cornerstone.  

In Revelation John speaks to the church at Ephesus about having lost their first love. He says, "Remember the height from which you have fallen!  Repent and do the things you did at first."

Today the ancient city of Ephesus lies in ruins.  There is a modern town there, but it no longer has the glory it once did. I imagine it exists mainly for the tourist trade.  This picture was taken in 1962, so I don't know what it looks like today in 2011.