Hello everyone. I’m having a huge problem with a quotation that appears here and there on the Internet, in defense of the salvation outside the Church doctrine.
It’s from Saint Justin Martyr’s First Apology, chapter 46. The text, as quoted by several sources, including an article on Catholic Answers ( see here catholic.com/tracts/salvation-outside-the-church ), reads like this:*
If some should accuse us as if we held that people born before the time of Christ were not accountable to God for their actions, we shall anticipate and answer such a difficulty. We have been taught that Christ is the first-begotten of God, and we have declared him to be the Logos of which all mankind partakes. Those, therefore, who lived according to reason (logos) were really Christians, even though they were thought to be atheists, such as, among the Greeks, Socrates, Heraclitus and other like them… So also, those who lived before Christ but did not live according to reason were wicked men, and enemies of Christ, and murderers of those who did live according to reason. **Whereas those who lived then, or who live now, according to reason are Christians. Such as these can be confident and unafraid. **… Christ… was and is the Logos who is in everyone and foretold through the prophets the things that were to come, and taught these things in person after becoming like to us in feeling. *
The problem is that none of the sources where the full text of the First Apology is presented have the highlighted text from the above. Every source, including newadvent.org/fathers/0126.htm, reads like this:*
But lest some should, without reason, and for the perversion of what we teach, maintain that we say that Christ was born one hundred and fifty years ago under Cyrenius, and subsequently, in the time of Pontius Pilate, taught what we say He taught; and should cry out against us as though all men who were born before Him were irresponsible — let us anticipate and solve the difficulty. We have been taught that Christ is the first-born of God, and we have declared above that He is the Word of whom every race of men were partakers; and those who lived reasonably are Christians, even though they have been thought atheists; as, among the Greeks, Socrates and Heraclitus, and men like them; and among the barbarians, Abraham, and Ananias, and Azarias, and Misael, and Elias, and many others whose actions and names we now decline to recount, because we know it would be tedious. So that even they who lived before Christ, and lived without reason, were wicked and hostile to Christ, and slew those who lived reasonably. But who, through the power of the Word, according to the will of God the Father and Lord of all, He was born of a virgin as a man, and was named Jesus, and was crucified, and died, and rose again, and ascended into heaven, an intelligent man will be able to comprehend from what has been already so largely said. And we, since the proof of this subject is less needful now, will pass for the present to the proof of those things which are urgent.*
So, which version is correct ?