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Theosis

February 18, 2008

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Theosis simply put is “Union with God”.  It was Theia Enosis(union with God) that Christ asked the Father for when

He prayed that …“they also may be one in us.” (as we are one) John 17:21.

Another common means of expressing Theosis by orthodox is that we are “partakers of Divine Nature”.

Theosis also relates to salvation in many respects. And Theosis is seen in a very favorable light by Orthodox. It is the good news of the gospel, that we are to share in the very life of God. “Who is man that You are mindful of him?”

Salvation in orthodox terms is not only forgiveness of sins, and reconcilliation or justification by faith, but also the renewing and restoration of God’s image in us, “Let us make man in our image.”

Therefore the restoration of what was lost, by Theosis with Christ and the price He paid for us to restore our fallen state back into relationship with the Creator. Thusly Theosis is our great potential.

We can think of theosis as the transfiguration of man, restoration of communion with God, recieving the Holy Spirit who then dwells within us, becoming temples of the Holy Spirit, ascending to the throne of God, participating in the kingdom of God, and by grace being what God is by nature. St Paul in

Eph. 3:19 “we are made to be filled with all the fullness of God.”

St Symeon the New Theologian states “we become gods by disposition and grace, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, and together with this we receive the mind of Christ; and through it all we see God and Christ Himself, living in us according to His divinity, moving in a conscious way within us.”

Maximus the Confessor :“Man by the grace of God can become that which God is..” Zen Buddhism says, “In the begining there was nothing. The purpose of life is to achieve nothingness.”
Orthodox Theosis says,  “In the begining there was God. The purpose of life is to achieve union with God not in His essence but through His energies.”

Orthodox Scholar Anthony Coniaris states that “many of those who are baptized have in them the seed of theosis but have never made a authentic act of personal faith.”


St Gregory of Nyssa wrote; “…composed of bread and wine. He thus is commingled with us, so that by our union with the immortal, we might share in immortality.”

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