Faustus, who embraced evil and shunned righteousness, became the foremost symbol of the misuse of free will, that sublime gift from God with its inherent opportunity to choose virtue and reject iniquity. What shall a man gain if he has the whole world and lose his soul, (Matt. 16: v. 26) - but for a notorious name, the ethereal shadow of a career, and a brief life of fleeting pleasure with no true peace? This was the blackest and most captivating tragedy of all, few could have remained indifferent to the growing intrigue of this individual who apparently shook hands with the devil and freely chose to descend to the molten, sulphuric chasm of Hell for all eternity for so little in exchange. It is a drama that continues to fascinate today as powerfully as when Faustus first disseminated his infamous card in the Heidelberg locale to the scandal of his generation. In fine, a life of good or evil, the hope of Heaven or the despair of Hell, Faustus stands as a reminder that the choice between these two absolutes also falls to us.
I am Envy, begotten of a chimney-sweeper and an oyster-wife. I cannot read, and therefore wish all books were burnt; I am lean with seeing others eat - O that there would come a famine through all the world, that all might die, and I live alone; then thou should'st see how fat I would be! But must thou sit and I stand? Come down, with a vengeance!