Biblical Christianity is a very simple thing in essence. God incarnate gave his life for our sins so that if we believe in Him we shall have eternal life. Most would agree that this is very basic in nature. The actual life leading up to and following this decision happens to be the interesting part that is shrouded in much confusion in the world today. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury actually manages to offer loads of simple clarity on what this Christian life basically consists of through the life of Guy Montag as a fireman, his pursuit of knowledge and knowledge’s pursuit of him, and his ultimate escape into freedom.
The idea seems farfetched at first, but start with the beginning of the book. Guy is walking by himself thinking about absolutely nothing when, for no reasons other than pure coincidence, he meets Clarisse McClellan. Clarisse quickly reveals to him that something in his soul is not right, that there is more. She begins to make his brain churn and think for the first time with statements such as, “You laugh when I haven’t been funny and you answer right off. You never stop to think what I’ve asked you (8).” Guy does not immediately realize this but the ball has begun to roll and books will begin to embody this invaluable knowledge that he needs. This is very similar to the Biblical teaching of Jesus revealing himself to people and their subsequent realizing that there is more to this life than the day-to-day strivings after wind. Knowledge has begun its pursuit of Guy just as Jesus begins the pursuit with people.
This pursuit highlights the emptiness of Guy’s life that he had been unaware of before. The unquenchable flame of the fire is leading him nowhere and knowledge offers a new life with lasting value. The Bible parallels this with teachings such as Jesus stating that he is “the light of the world” and that whoever follows Him will no longer live in darkness but rather gain understanding. Guy is quickly realizing that he must do more and even goes into deeper issues of the Christian life such as evangelism with Guy desiring for everyone to have this knowledge that he has tasted. The interpretation succeeds from the early pursuit, however, into the actual salvation and freedom that come from accepting Jesus.
Montag, upon giving into the pursuit of knowledge, flees from his previous life as a fireman and crosses the river into the wilderness. This entire...