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ve where these young believers took shelter. Some Muslim researchers and the Qur’anic commentators agree with the Christians regarding Ephesus. Some others explained that Ephesus could not be the place, and then tried to prove that the event took place in Tarsus. In this study, both of these alternatives will be dealt with. Yet, all those researchers and commentators - including the Christians - concur that the event took place at the time of Roman Emperor Decius (also called as Decianus), around 250 AD. Decius, together with Nero, is known to be the Roman Emperor who most severely tortured the Christians. During his short reign, he passed a law that compelled everyone under his rule to offer a sacrifice to the Roman gods. Everyone was obliged to offer a sacrifice to these deities, and moreover, to get a certificate showing that they had done this, which they had to show to state officials. Those who did not obey were executed. In Christian sources, it is written that a great majority of the Christians refused this idolatrous act and fled from "one city to another", or hid in secret shelters. The Companions of the Cave are most probably a group among these early Christians. Meanwhile, there is a point that has to be emphasised here: this topic has been narrated in a story-like manner by some of Muslim and Christian historians and commentators, and turned into a legend as a result of the addition of much falsehood and hearsay. However, this incident is a historical reality.

Are the Companions of the Cave in Ephesus? As regards the city where these young people lived and the cave in which they took shelter, various places are indicated in different sources. The main reasons for this are: people's wish to believe that such courageous and brave-hearted people lived in their town, and the great similarity of the caves in those regions. For instance, in almost all of these places, there is a place of worship said to be built over caves. As is well known, Ephesus was accepted to be a holy place by the Christians, because, there is a house in this city which was said to be the Virgin Mary's and which was later turned into a church. So, it is highly pro-

Harun Yahya 134

Perished Nations  

Adnan Oktar (Harun Yahya) It is Allah Who creates man, and gives him a spiritual and physical form, lets him lead a certain course of life,...

Perished Nations  

Adnan Oktar (Harun Yahya) It is Allah Who creates man, and gives him a spiritual and physical form, lets him lead a certain course of life,...

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