The Rev. Hans Boersma, PhD

A headshot of Hans Boersma

The Rev. Hans Boersma, PhD

Chair, Order of St. Benedict Servants of Christ Endowed Professorship in Ascetical Theology |

PhD in Historical Theology, University of Utrecht
ThM in Historical Theology, University of Utrecht
MDiv, Canadian Reformed Theological Seminary, Hamilton, ON
BA in History, University of Lethbridge
BEd, Christian Pedagogical Academy Felua, Ede, Netherlands

Get to Know Dr. Boersma

Dr. Boersma a prolific and internationally noted theologian, came to Nashotah House in 2019. Prior to this, he taught at Regent College in Vancouver, Canada for fourteen years. Dr. Boersma also taught for six years at Trinity Western University in Langley, BC, and served several years in the local church as a pastor. Along the way, Dr. Boersma has emerged as a leading voice among Protestant and evangelical theologians exploring and appropriating the riches of the Catholic tradition.

Dr. Boersma’s interests range across a variety of areas: patristic theology, twentieth-century Catholic thought, and spiritual interpretation of Scripture. In each of these areas, he sets out to retrieve the sacramental ontology of the pre-modern tradition. This retrieval (ressourcement) of the Great Tradition’s sacramental view of reality has been at the heart of his publications over the past fifteen years.

Dr. Boersma and his wife Linda have five children and thirteen grandchildren (and their Golden Retriever Penny deserves special mention). Dr. Boersma serves as a priest in the Anglican Church in North America.

Selected Publications

  • Books
    • Five Things Theologians Wish Biblical Scholars Knew. Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 2021.

    • Seeing God: The Beatific Vision in Christian Tradition. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2018.

    • Scripture as Real Presence: Sacramental Exegesis in the Early Church. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2017.

    • Sacramental Preaching: Sermons on the Hidden Presence of Christ. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2016.

    • Heaven on Earth? Theological Interpretation in Ecumenical Dialogue. Co-edited with Matthew Levering. Directions in Modern Theology. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell, 2013.

    • Embodiment and Virtue in Gregory of Nyssa: An Anagogical Approach. Oxford Early Christian Studies. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013.

    • Eucharistic Participation: The Reconfiguration of Time and Space. Vancouver: Regent College Publishing, 2013. E- book. Republished as paperback 2021.

    • Heavenly Participation: The Weaving of a Sacramental Tapestry. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2011.

    • Nouvelle Théologie and Sacramental Ontology: A Return to Mystery. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009.

    • Violence, Hospitality, and the Cross: Reappropriating the Atonement Tradition. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2004.

    • Imagination and Interpretation: Christian Perspectives. Vancouver: Regent College Publishing, 2005.

    • Richard Baxter's Understanding of Infant Baptism. Studies in Reformed Theology and History, New Series 7. Princeton: Princeton Theological Seminary, 2002.

    • Living in the LambLight: Christianity and Contemporary Challenges to the Gospel. Vancouver: Regent College Publishing, 2001.

    • A Hot Pepper Corn: Richard Baxter's Doctrine of Justification in Its Seventeenth-Century Context of Controversy. PhD diss. University of Utrecht. Zoetermeer, Netherlands: Boekencentrum, 1993. Re-published: Vancouver: Regent College Publishing, 2004.

  • Articles and Book Chapters
    • "Election and Spirituality." In T&T Clark Companion to Election. Ed. Edwin Chr. van Driel. London: Bloomsbury T&T Clark, forthcoming.

    • "Memory and Character Formation: The Ark in Hugh Of Saint Victor." Edited volume on children and theology. Ed. James M. Houston. Wipf & Stock, forthcoming.

    • "Plotinus and the Ascent to Beauty." In Patristic Spirituality: Classical Perspectives on Ascent in the Journey to God. Studies in Theology and Religion. Ed. Kevin Clarke and Don Springer. Studies in Theology and Religion. Leiden: Brill, 2021, forthcoming.

    • "Gemeinsam auf dem Berg: Einheit und Spiritualität." In "Wachet und Betet": Mystik, Spiritualität und Gebet in Zeitenpolitischer und Gesellschaftlicher Unruhe. Ed. Oliver Dürr, Ralph Kuntz, and Andreas Steingruber, 149-62. Münster: Aschendorff, 2021.

    • "Spiritualität in der Moderne: Warum das Ende der Anfang ist." In "Wachet und Betet": Mystik, Spiritualität und Gebet in Zeiten politischer und Gesellschaftlicher Unruhe. Ed. Oliver Dürr, Ralph Kuntz, and Andreas Steingruber, 32-43. Münster: Aschendorff, 2021.

    • "Christopher Seitz and the Priority of the Christ Event." Review essay. Pro Ecclesia 29 (2020):275—84.

    • "Neo-Calvinism and the Beatific Vision: Eschatology in the Reformed Tradition." Crux 56/3 (2020):25—29.

    • "Meeting par cum pari: Unitatis Redintegratio and the Possibility of Ecumenical Progress." In Dogma and Ecumenism: Vatican II and Karl Barth's Ad Limina Apostolorum. Ed. Matthew Levering, Bruce L. McCormack, and Thomas Joseph White, 245-67. Washington, DC: Catholic University of America Press, 2020.

    • "Justification within Participation: Irenaeus in Ecumenical Dialogue." International Journal of Systematic Theology 22 (2020): 169-90.

    • "Ascension of an Immaterial Body: With Contributions of Nicholas of Cusa, Jonathan Edwards, and Gregory of Nyssa." In The Book of Acts: Catholic, Orthodox, and Evangelical Readings. Ed. Charles Raith II, 23—35. Washington, DC: Catholic University of America Press, 2019.

    • "The Beatific Vision: Contemplating Christ as the Future Present." In Embracing Contemplation: Reclaiming a Christian Spiritual Practice. Ed. John H. Coe and Kyle C. Strobel, 182-200. Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 2019.

    • "Charles Taylor and the Modern Immanent Frame." Review essay. Crux 55/1 (2019):14-18.

    • "Thomas Aquinas on the Beatific Vision: A Christological Deficit." TheoLogica 2/2 (2018):129-47.

    • "Putting on Clothes: Body, Sex, and Gender in Gregory of Nyssa." Crux 54/2 (2018):27—34.

    • "Reading the Exodus Story with Melito and Origen." In Acts of Interpretation: Scripture, Theology, and Culture. Ed. S. A. Cummins and Jens Zimmermann, 151—74. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2018.

    • "Gregory of Nyssa: Becoming Human in the Face of God." In Sources of the Christian Self: A Cultural History Of Christian Identity. Ed. James M. Houston and Jens Zimmermann, 146-67. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2018.

    • "Theophany as Divine Hospitality in Origen and Chrysostom." In A Transforming Vision: Knowing and Loving the Triune God. Ed. George Westhaver, 41-56. Norwich, UK: SCM, 2018.

    • "Sacramental Interpretation: On the Need for Theological Grounding of Narratival History." In Exile: A Conversation with N. T. Wright. Ed. James M. Scott, 255-72. Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 2017.

    • "Patristic Interpretation and Real Presence." Criswell Theological Review 15/1 (2017):3-15.

    • "Zaligheid en heerlijkheid: Abraham Kuyper over de gelukzalige aanschouwing." Translated by Henk van ter Meij and Koert van Bekkum. Radix 43 (2017):232-49.

    • “Blessing and Glory: Abraham Kuyper on the Beatific Vision.” Calvin Theological Journal 52 (2017): 205–41.

    • “The ‘Grand Medium’: An Edwardsean Modification of Thomas Aquinas on the Beatific Vision.” Modern Theology 33 (2017): 187–212.

    • "Nuptial Reading: Hippolytus, Origen, and Ambrose on the Bridal Couple of the Song of Songs.” Calvin Theological Journal 51 (2016): 227–58.

    • “The Sacramental Reading of Nicene Theology: Athanasius and Gregory of Nyssa on Proverbs 8.” Journal of Theological Interpretation 10 (2016): 1–30.

    • “Becoming Human in the Face of God: Gregory of Nyssa’s Unending Search for the Beatific Vision.” International Journal of Systematic Theology 17 (2015): 131–51.