Theosis in Augustine  

Posted by Joe Rawls

Theosis or deification is typically considered an Eastern Orthodox concept.  Yet it does crop up fairly often in the writings of Western theologians.  One such is Augustine of Hippo.  In his blog Alvin Rapien collates several Augustinian quotes pertaining to theosis and comments on them, prefacing his remarks with a concise description of what theosis is.  One such quote is reproduced below.  Augustine is at pains to stress that theosis is a participation in the life of God and not a transformation of our created essence into the divine essence.


So also, just as His inferior circumstances, into which He descended to us, were not in every particular exactly the same with our inferior circumstances, in which He found us here; so our superior state, into which we ascend to Him, will not be quite the same with His superior state, in which we are there to find Him.  For we by His grace are to be made the sons of God, whereas He was evermore by nature the Son of God; we, when we are converted, shall cleave to God, though not as His equals; He never turned from God, and remains ever equal to God; we are partakers of eternal life, He is eternal life.

This entry was posted on Sunday, November 22, 2015 at Sunday, November 22, 2015 . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


Thanks for reading and linking to my blog! I am excited to see more developments regarding St Augustine and Theosis, especially as a (soon to be) Eastern Orthodox Christian living in the West.

Grace and Peace,

November 24, 2015 at 1:25 PM

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