That They May Have Life: Trinitarian Deification in Matthias Joseph Scheeben

Doctoral Dissertation


This dissertation offers an analysis of Matthias Joseph Scheeben’s theology of deification by demonstrating the connection between his trinitarian theology and theology of grace. Chapter 1 (“Mysteric-Supernatural Deification: A Doctrine Emerges”) argues that Scheeben’s theology of deification, with its characteristic accents on mystery and the supernatural, emerged as a counterproposal to the theological rationalism Scheeben saw threatening Christian life and theology in nineteenth-century Germany. Chapter 2 (“The Divine Trinity: Fons Vitae”) shows how the distinctive accents of Scheeben’s emanational trinitarian theology (e.g., a strong use of the psychological analogy, a robust doctrine of personhood, and a linear ex Patre per Filium trinitarian arrangement) relate to Scheeben’s theology de Deo uno and anticipate his doctrine of grace by foregrounding the concept of divine self-communication. Chapter 3 (“Grace: Becoming God’s Adopted Children”) analyzes Scheeben’s theology of the divine missions, conception of the relation of nature and grace, and theology of human union with God understood as trinitarian deification, through which we become children of the Father, spouses of the Son, and temples of the Holy Spirit.


Attribute NameValues
Author Vincent L. Strand
Contributor John R. Betz, Research Director
Contributor Khaled Anatolios, Research Director
Degree Level Doctoral Dissertation
Degree Discipline Theology
Degree Name Doctor of Philosophy
Banner Code

Defense Date
  • 2022-08-15

Submission Date 2022-08-31
Record Visibility Public
Content License
  • All rights reserved

Departments and Units
Catalog Record

Digital Object Identifier


This DOI is the best way to cite this doctoral dissertation.


Please Note: You may encounter a delay before a download begins. Large or infrequently accessed files can take several minutes to retrieve from our archival storage system.