Marilyn Cross is a clear Christ figure in Tom Godwin's "The Cold Equations." The most obvious biblical allusion (and connection to Jesus Christ) in Marilyn Cross is her name: Marilyn is a form of Mary, the mother of Jesus, and the cross was the instrument of Jesus's death.
Consider also that both Christ and Marilyn are innocents. Christ never committed a sin in his lifetime. Marilyn is merely ignorant of her transgression. She, like Christ, is pure in heart, wanting only to connect with family. This innocence is in direct conflict with the environment in which they find themselves. Godwin writes that Marilyn “belonged in that world of soft winds and a warm sun, music and moonlight and gracious manners, and not on the hard, bleak frontier.” As she steps out of the supply closet, it is abundantly clear that she does not understand the harshness of life in space or the terribly consequences of her actions.
This innocence is further highlighted by Marilyn’s impending death: “You’re going to make me die and I didn’t do anything to die for—I didn’t do anything.” Her purity is signaled by the image of her shoes, the only item of clothing mentioned multiple times, which are “white.”
As Christ’s death is a sacrifice for the sinners of the world—you could say the “sick” of the fallen world—Marilyn’s death is also a sort of sacrifice for the 6 men who desperately need the serum to cure their otherwise fatal disease. Both characters originally fight this fate. Christ prays for God to “take this cup from me,” if it is His will, and Marilyn asks desperately: “Isn’t there any hope at all that there might be someone, somewhere, who could do something to help me?” Both characters inevitably accept this fate and go to their deaths willingly. Christ carries his own cross to the place of execution, and Marilyn steps into the airlock on her own.