The famed phrase native Shakespeare"s "As You choose It" is theologically sound, but few are default to usage it. And, in the end, it only makes far-reaching sense if this life isn"t the end. Adobe stock photo
“Sweet are the offers of adversity, which, choose the toad, ugly and also venomous, wears however a precious jewel in his head; and also this our life, freed from windy haunt, find tongues in trees, publications in the to run brooks, sermons in stones, and great in every thing.”

This passage from wilhelm Shakespeare’s “As You favor It” (II.1.12-17) draws on folklore about an ugly toad who head bears a precious, healing stone. Fight it out Senior, who “adversity” occurs from having actually been deposed and also driven into wilderness exile by Frederick, his ambitious and also cunning younger brother, is explicate the mindset he’s adopted as a result of that coup. (“Uses,” in Shakespeare’s language here, means “profits.”)

The “jewel” that senior discovers in the forest of Arden is withdrawal from “public haunt,” indigenous the court, which has given him the quiet possibility to reflect. Anyway, the says, rough-hewn nature speaks more eloquently and an ext honestly than carry out disingenuous human tongues, clever books and smooth sermonizing. Also rocks are better company 보다 courtiers, and also far less treacherous.

You are watching: Sweet are the uses of adversity

Shakespeare’s allude here is entirely regular with the restored gospel’s teaching the this life is around what (borrowing native the late man Hick) i have termed “soul-making” (see this previous obelisk “A ar designed to do saints,” Nov. 6, 2014).

Today, however, the expression “sweet room the uses of adversity” might most regularly be used sarcastically. Certainly, it seems too smug, as well easy and comfortable, to be supplied in earnest through anybody that isn’t considerably suffering or that hasn’t suffered substantially in the past. Us would, because that instance, regard it as appallingly unreasonable if a healthy person to be to congratulate those struggling with grave diseases on the glorious chance they’ve been offered to construct their personality thereby. A rich male with plenty to eat and a comfortable residence probably shouldn’t explain to a poor, hungry guy who poor is a gift bestowed upon him for his eternal benefit.

But below we involved one of the unique aspects of Christianity, i beg your pardon teaches the “the Word was made flesh, and also dwelt among us” (John 1:14), and also that “God remained in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself” (2 Corinthians 5:19). The Savior actually is in a position to tell united state that “all these things shall give thee experience, and also shall be because that thy good.” Why? since “The kid of man hath descended listed below them all. Arts thou greater than he?” (Doctrine and also Covenants 122:7-8). “For,” says the writer of the epistle to the Hebrews, “we have actually not an high priest which can not be touched through the feeling of our infirmities; yet was in all points tempted choose as we are, however without sin” (Hebrews 4:15).

As the prophet Alma explained to the people of Gideon early on in the an initial century before Christ’s birth, “he will take top top him your infirmities, that his bowels might be filled v mercy, follow to the flesh, the he may understand according to the flesh just how to succor his human being according to their infirmities” (Alma 7:12).

A revelation provided through the Prophet Joseph blacksmith at Kirtland, Ohio, throughout the winter that 1832-1833 explains Christ together “He the ascended up on high, as likewise he descended below all things, in that he comprehended all things, that he might be in all and also through all things, the light of truth” (Doctrine and also Covenants 88:6).

“He is despised and also rejected the men,” says the prophet Isaiah in his renowned “suffering servant” poem, traditionally construed by Christians as a description of Jesus, “a man of sorrows, and acquainted v grief” (Isaiah 53:3).

But “soul-making” eventually justifies deep suffering and also gives an interpretation to challenges only if those adversities no the end of the story. In the play, senior — presumably a far better and wiser guy for his time exiled in the wilderness — is revitalized to his dukedom. In sports, overcoming defeat and also discouragement builds character, but does so generally for life past the game and even exterior the stadium. In ~ the video game itself, a defeat is just a defeat.

“My son,” claimed the lord to the Prophet Joseph, imprisoned in Missouri, “peace be depend thy soul; thine adversity and also thine afflictions shall be however a tiny moment; and also then, if she endure the well, God chandelier exalt thee ~ above high; you shalt triumph over all thy foes” (Doctrine and also Covenants 121:7-8).

Five years later, imprisoned again, faithful Joseph was murdered by a lot (see Doctrine and Covenants 135) — and those who murdered him room remembered just as note to his story.

See more: How Does The Number Of Electron Pairs Around A Central Atom Determine Its Shape

Daniel Peterson teaches Arabic studies, started BYU’s middle Eastern messages Initiative, directs MormonScholarsTestify.org, chairs mormoninterpreter.com, blogs daily at patheos.com/blogs/danpeterson, and also speaks only for himself.