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(x)

In the third century, Cyprian, the Bishop of Carthage, said that “there was no salvation outside the Church”. However, he was more referring to threats against the unity of the church rather than condemning those outside of it.

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As we learned earlier this year, Christianity had many outside influences that helped shaped the way we go about it in the present. Clement of Alexandria, a Christian philosopher, cited Greek philosophy as a way to pave the way for the gospel in a Greco-Roman society. This philosophy would later be seen as an basis for Christian doctrine.

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Robert Bellarmine came up with the idea of people having an implicit desire. Meaning that even if the Christian religion encountered a culture that had never heard the name of Christ (which according to this interpretation meant that they were going to hell), the attempt of the non-Christian to live a moral life meant that they had a subconscious desire to join the Church, which meant that they had access to heaven.

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