An Analysis of Biblical Allusions in Lord of the Flies by William Golding

In the story Lord of the Flies there are many biblical allusions; Simon represents Jesus, The pig’s head represents Satan or rather their satanic sides, Jack represents Judas, and the island represents the Garden of Eden. Through out this novel these allusions play large parts in the story and ideals place in the story. Simon, one of the major characters in the story, is set as the allusion of Jesus. Christ always had an affinity with children; in Ch. 4, he shows his way by picking fruit for them. This shows his goodness by nature. Also, like Christ, he saw the atavistic problem of the hunters and tried to bring them back to good. As in the bible, Simon, like Christ, dies as a martyr for his cause; coming back with the news that the beast is a corpse, he is slain by the savage hunters. The Simon, sitting between the twins and Piggy, wiped his mouth and shoved his piece of meat over the rocks to Piggy, who grabbed it. The twins giggled and Simon lowered his face in shame! This quote shows that Simon is kind and sincere as is Christ through out his lifetimes. Simon goes often to the forest to meditate, just as Christ went for 40 days and nights to meditate in the desert.

At the end of his meditation, Christ meets up with Satan, just as the boar skull is planted in Simon’s sacred area. Finally, if you observe Simon’s death, you see that as he drifts off to see glowing unicellular organisms engulf his body and create a halo around his head, creating the visage of a saint. In the Novel, the image of Satan is portrayed by the pigs head representing the satanic, or evil, side of the children. The Piga’s head, dubbed Lord of the Flies and as one of Satan’s names is Beelzebub (Mt. 12:24) which means “Lord of the flies.” shows that the pigs head represents Satan. When Simon goes off to meditate he is confronted with the piga’s head, as Jesus was confronted with Satan when he left for forty days and forty nights. Simons talk with the Lord of the Flies is akin to Christ’s temptation by Satan.

In the New Testament, Satan tells Christ not to kill himself for us but to enjoy life and power. Simon is told that if he doesn’t “run off and play”, the hunters and the Lord of the Flies will “do you in.” Jack, one of the lead characters in the novel, alludes to the biblical figure Judas for his betrayal to the good of the people brought forth by Jesus. Jack is the reason Simon is killed, for he betrayed Ralpha’s rules and brought forth the evil within the children’s minds. Jack refuses Ralph’s ideas and regulations in trade for fun and hunting. This shows his betrayal to the good of man and his want to bring evil forth to the island.

The island, in the novel, represents the Garden of Eden. In particular Simon’s little hideout can be related to the garden of Eden as that what was once beautiful becomes terrifying with the pig’s head being placed in the centre of his hideout. The island that was once lovely, seeming like paradise, becomes burnt by the end of the novel, “like dead wood,” rather like the Garden of Eden was paradise until man betrayed Gods wish, and paradise was taken away. In conclusion, the novel Lord of the Flies clearly shows allusion to the bible and biblical figures. Some critics say this shows a lack of originality on Golding’s part, but who else could have thought to create a story quite like this one? As Simon plays the role of Jesus, he is the Savior and Sacrifice; The pigs head, representing the Lord of the Flies, or Beelzebub, instilling fear in the childrens minds and bringing out that which is evil; Jack, the role of Judas as he betrays that which is good; and the island, as the garden of Eden, as it starts off as a beautiful sacred paradise but is destroyed by carelessness and never to regain its beauty through out the book. The Novel has become a great symbol of tragedy with a dose of reality as it relates to that which so many believe.

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