It is rare to see Priestley's play interpreted in such a Christian context today, even though England today remains a Christian nation and retains a high percentage (but a decreasing percentage) of Christians. It is interesting that Priestley's message has found more resonance in modern theories of politics and sociology than in Christian conceptions of sin, forgiveness, and guilt. This set of different, even contradictory, interpretations suggests a universality that might ensure the long-term endurance of Priestley's play.
“We do not live alone,” the Inspector says in his final speech, “we are members of one body.” This perhaps is the most important and central theme of the play: that we have a duty to other people, regardless of social status, wealth, class, or anything else. There is, Priestley observes, such a thing as society, and he argues that it is important that people be aware of the effects of their actions on others. The Birlings, of course, initially do not think at all about how they might have affected Eva Smith, but they are forced to confront their likely responsibility over the course of the play.