With this said, while there may be no clear passage in the Bible addressing tattoos, this is hardly a license for unrestrained tattooing. ~ Leviticus 19:28, Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? ~ 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords. ~ John 3:16, Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. https://www.learnreligions.com/is-it-a-sin-to-get-a-body-piercing-712256 There is nothing wrong with being an art lover. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body. Biblical Evidence When it comes to tattoos, many Christians who are against the practice use verses from the Bible to justify their conservative stance. His people did not enjoy the advantages of 21st-century society: hospitals, doctors, and antibiotics. Tattoos in the Bible - What does Scripture say? Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them.” Self-harm says “Christ’s sacrifice wasn’t enough. Some cultures tattooed their slaves to identify them, others placed tattoos on military soldiers, and in some cultures prostitutes wore them. Tattoos have been around for thousands of years. Candice Lucey loves Christ and writing about His promises brings her much pleasure. Be strong and courageous. What Does The Bible Say About Tattoos and Piercings? Many people wear a semicolon tattoo indicating they stand with survivors of suicide and people who suffer from mental health concerns. So what does the Bible say about tattoos? Obtaining a tattoo can spark gospel-centered conversation and act as a missional ice-breaker but is not as compelling as a heart changed by Jesus. The worship of Baal has been dated to at least before the Exodus, making it contemporary with the time in which Moses was given the law. ~ 1 Corinthians 10:31, And try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. Verse Concepts. You shall not cut yourselves or make any baldness on your foreheads for the dead. ~ Colossians 3:14. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true) and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. If self-mutilation went wrong, one could die a painful death or at least create ugly scars, all to please the pagan gods. One ancient verse describes ritual masochism: “She cuts cheek and chin/She lacerates Her forearms/She plows lake a garden Her chest/Like a vale She lacerates the back.”. “All things are lawful,” but not all things build up. Please enter your email address associated with your Salem All-Pass account, then click Continue. In the Ne… The Bible makes no specific reference to tattoos as we understand them in modern times. In conversation with others who sport tattoos, they provide a natural avenue to discussing the gospel and demonstrating that the important change has taken place inwardly, where Christ has exquisitely and tenderly marked the inner person. Is it a sin? “The Scriptures never ask Christians to deny the feeling of grief — it is a right and holy sadness.” Yet, some people think too much about those who are gone; they look backward and fail to move forward. We cannot leave the discussion of tattoos without looking at the Old Testament law that prohibited tattoos: “Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves. Talking to a loved one, keeping a shrine to the deceased, making a shrine of one’s body by way of a tattoo: this is idolatry. Seek out the direction of the Holy Spirit in prayer, by reading the Word, and by asking wise friends. There have been people, Christians, that say having a tattoo is nothing but sin. Do people regret tattoos? 7 Questions to Answer When Considering a Tattoo, Inspiring Bible Verse Tattoos - Top Scriptures for Tattoos, California - Do Not Sell My Personal Information. God did not want His people to hurt themselves gratuitously. People sometimes self-injure themselves for the same reasons they get tattoos: the pain is part of how they cope with difficulty or feel a sense of power for a short period of time. Misconception: In Bible times, only people in God’s disfavor were burned after death. Tattoos borne out of self-hatred are legacies of darkness rather than light. ~ 1 Peter 4:8, And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. Answer: Body modification, including piercing, tattooing, scarring, branding, cutting, and outright mutilation, has been an increasing trend in recent years. Leviticus 21:5. Wise Christians weigh their motives. ~ 1 Corinthians 16:14, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. You are not your own ~ 1 Corinthians 6:19, For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil. If a Christian is considering getting a tattoo as a way of honoring one who has died, of glorifying that person posthumously and identifying with grief more than with Christ, he or she might want to think twice. Gifted experts have turned many scars into beautiful works of art, but Christians have to ask themselves whether those tattoos activate a sense of inner strength or remind them of God’s powerful grip on them during times of darkness and pain. Fact: The Bible says that those who die return to the dust, which is what naturally happens to a corpse when it decomposes. ~ 1 Corinthians 3:16-17, But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified. It does not mention it by name in either the Old or New Testaments. You are not your own; you were bought at a price. of Therefore honor God with your bodies.” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). ~ 2 Corinthians 5:10, Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness. Salem Media Group. Consider the financial cost, the time commitment, and the pain one endures, not to mention the permanence of a tattoo: this is no minor undertaking. It makes sense for someone who is religious to act wisely before they ink and consider what the Bible has to say about tattoos before making that permanent decision. ~ Revelation 19:16, So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. However, the Bible does mention skin tags , and over time this phrase has been translated into several versions of the Bible as tattoos on the skin. Well there is this other one in which Jesus is pictured with a tattoo… Revelation 19:16. You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. (Genesis 3: 19) Cremation speeds up the process by reducing the body to ashes, or dust. In whatever we do, we must make sure that we include Him in our plans. To begin to answer such thought-provoking questions, we need to dive into the Bible to see what it says about the issue. The New Testament does not specifically command against tattoos or body piercings, but it also does not give us any reason to believe God would have us get tattoos or body piercings. Some Christians condemn all tattooing as immoral because God clearly forbids them in Leviticus 19:28. In this article we will consider the three parts of God’s law in Leviticus 19:28 as it refers to tattoos: “cuttings in your flesh;” “for the dead;” and “print marks” to try and establish a biblical stance for Christians today. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. Any publicly visible image makes that image and associated ideas famous. I am the Lord.”, Leviticus 19:28 literally translates, “And a cutting for the dead you will not make in your flesh, and writing marks you will not make on you; I am the Lord.” The word writing refers to inscribed or engraved symbols/words and is used only here. Trying to run one’s life without God is like that first rebellion in the Garden, but while “many are the plans in the mind of a man, [...] it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand” (Proverbs 19:21). A popular reason to get a tattoo is in order to honor a loved one who has died. Some Christians condemn all tattooing as immoral because God clearly forbids them in Leviticus 19:28. But what is important is that we always take the time to pray for guidance from the Lord. ~ Ephesians 5:10, “You are the sons of the Lord your God. For example although the Bible does not say, Thou shalt not smoke or Drug addiction is bad for you; we know that these things are destructive to the human body. The verse in the Bible that most Christians make reference to is Leviticus 19:28, which says,"You shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor tattoo any marks on you: I am the Lord." Since the word tattoo does appear in this verse in some popular English translations, this argument seems straightforward. Since the word tattoo does appear in this verse in some popular English translations, this argument seems straightforward. ~ Romans 12:1, Flee from sexual immorality. Some commentators say the statement forbidding tattoos only refers to pagan customs for the dead. It states, “You shall not make any cuttings on your flesh for the dead, nor tattoo any marks on you: I am the LORD.” This is actually not a proper use of this passage. ~ Psalm 27:1, Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. However, in context, it is clear that 1 Corinthians 6:13-20 is about sexual immorality, not about tattoos. Some people object to using Old Testament scripture as a reference to tattoos since the New Testament doesnt speak of these things. Yes, we must speak the truth in love, but let us make sure we are loving them and not condemning them. Does God See All Sins as Equal to One Another? A believer has the opportunity to use a tattoo to declare Christ’s name, but Christians without tattoos are identifiable without ink on their skin. She lives in the mountains of BC, Canada with her family. How Can I Identify Messianic Prophecies in the Old Testament? You shall not make any cuts on your body for the dead or tattoo yourselves: I am the Lord. Ancient cultures used tattoos for various reasons. The most common of these verses is found in the Old Testament, in the book of Leviticus. It’s important and biblical to support one another, but that support always begins in Christ; we have nothing to give without Him. That’s it. Can Christians have tattoos and piercings? Recent archeology indicates that, while Egypt did tattoos, it was limited to women. Once that mark has been made it cannot be removed easily. They are known by their gentleness (Philippians 4:5) and by the “fruit of the Spirit” (Galatians 5:22-23). God directed His people to disassociate themselves from Canaanite traditions such as slashing their bodies as a way to “mourn their dead.” What about designing beautiful markings in honor of loved ones who have passed on? Over 40 Bible Verses About Tattoos Bible Verses For Tattoos… The Bible does not say anything about tattoos as we know them today. I am the Lord.” Even the cross etched permanently into one’s chest can be an idol if one regards and describes it as a protective device, believing the cross is protective rather than Christ, imagining that salvation protects one from disease and muggers rather than protecting one for eternity with Jesus. | (Photo: REUTERS/Jason Reed) Among the contested issues within churches today is what the Bible says and means as it pertains to tattoos, a topic that proves challenging given that they have become normalized in … The Father wants His children to bear fruit, and a fruitful life is repentant. I am the LORD” (Leviticus 19:28). Here is a further look into what the Bible says about tattoos. For God's temple is holy, and you are that temple. In Canaan, evidence indicates that instead of marking the body with ink, more extreme scarification measures, like branding, slashing, or gashing the skin were used. A good tattoo is a work of art, no different from a beautiful painting. When we remain close to the Lord and obey Him, He can direct us in things that are not good for us. The very first verse is from the Book of Leviticus back in the Old Testament. Conclusion An important scriptural principle on issues the Bible does not specifically address is if there is room for doubt whether it pleases God , then it is best not to engage in that activity. Since the word tattoo does appear in this verse in some popular English translations, this argument seems straightforward. When one’s body is marked by trials, God uses those scars to point out His Sovereign touch — His ultimate healing. by Lex Meyer. Christians grieve for their dead, but they do not worship them. Article Images Copyright © 2020 Getty Images unless otherwise indicated. ~ 1 Peter 3:3-4, Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. A believer has the opportunity to use a tattoo to declare Christ’s name, but Christians without tattoos are identifiable without ink on their skin. So glorify God in your body. ~ 1 Corinthians 9:27, I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. All rights reserved. We'll send you an email with steps on how to reset your password. ~ 1 John 4:8, Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. ~ 1 Corinthians 6:18, It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is just not enough evidence to make a case that tattoos are always sin, but there is enough evidence to make any sincere believer in Jesus stop and really think and pray about the reason and motivations why they want to get a tattoo. Study the Bible, pray and ask God for wisdom, and seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Is the image or message a reminder of past guilt, a way of inflicting emotional distress every time one sees it? Look around, and one might see body art idolizing celebrities, death, or even a religion. ~ Joshua 1:9, For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. Paul writes “let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice” (Ephesians 4:31). But it doesn’t mean that the controversy surrounding them has completely gone away. We talked about the process of injecting ink into the skin with a special machine as an artistic expression. The Bible does not say enough about tattoos to make a hard and fast rule. The subject of tattoos and piercings is highly debated within the Christian community. Is the purpose to take control of one’s punishment and salvation? Obtaining a tattoo can spark gospel-centered conversation and act as a missional ice-breaker, but Christians without tattoos are identifiable without ink on their skin. Usually in the New Testament God shows that some things are permissible such as eating pork. Early in the history of Christianity as it spread from Rome into the rest of the world, “tattooing was severely frowned upon.” In fact, “Pope Hadrian banned tattooing, stating that God made man’s body in his image and to deface it in any way was to deface God’s gift.” In defense of tattoos, we now understand that the image of God is a spiritual one conveyed as “salt and light.” (Matthew 5:13-16) Marking one’s body is not necessarily vandalism. Leviticus 19:28 seems to imply this when it says, “you will not make cuttings in your flesh, for the dead, nor print marks on you.” In light of this information from Egypt and Canaan, it would seem God was forbidding scarification, not tattooing as we know it. There are some Christians who believe it is a sin. “No matter the type of brokenness — physical or mental — Christian identity is found not in a diagnosis, but instead in our position as redeemed children of God" (Romans 8:16–17). I know someone is going to say, “it’s in the Old Testament,” but the fact that it says, “no tattoos” should cause someone to think twice about getting a tattoo. It is all about the heart that declares Christ's name. Here are some bible verses about tattoo. If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy him. Many people who are against tattoos say that their dislike for them has to do with their religious beliefs. ~ Deuteronomy 14:1, “All things are lawful,” but not all things are helpful. Question: "What does the Bible say about body piercings?" The Hebrew for “imprint” is “qaaqa” which also means “tattoo” or “incision.” “In the Near East, tattoos were used to mark slaves.” If one wore a brand “on his hand or forehead,” he or she was quickly identified as someone’s property. The Bible actually only explicitly mentions body modifications once and nothing about present day tattoos. If it is in rebellion to parents, it is clearly not acceptable … Is obtaining a tattoo about self-punishment? All rights reserved. Is Christ number one? Can I bring him back again?” (2 Samuel 12:23). He wants us to turn to Him in times of trial and say, “When the cares of my heart are many, your consolations cheer my soul” (Psalm 94:19). ~ 2 Timothy 1:7, I sought the Lord, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears. The Bible does not say that it is against tattoos; it also doesn’t promote tattoos. Global Impact International. Cutting and even some methods of tattooing are associated with punishment throughout the ages in many cultures, whether self-inflicted or as a means of torture by others. Further, the word tattoo did not enter into the English language until the late 1700s. Posted 14 December 2020 14 December 2020 “For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. You shall not make any cuts in your body for the dead nor make any tattoo marks on yourselves: I am the Lord. If the Bible says that tattoo is not good, then we should stay away from it. They are known by their gentleness ( Philippians 4:5) and by the “fruit of the Spirit” ( Galatians 5:22-23 ). You still need to think before you ink, especially if you’re a Christian. Leviticus 19:28. So if it’s good enough for Jesus… Back to Leviticus… “Do not cut your bodies for the dead, and do not mark your skin with tattoos. We are to have Gods laws written in our hearts. 1. 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