Video answer: Part 1: tattoos - what does the bible say?
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There are some Christians who believe it is a sin. 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.” So, why is this verse in the Bible?
Video answer: What does the bible say about tattoos and piercings?
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Will God forgive me if I have tattoos? So no, God would not forgive you for getting a religious tattoo, because he wouldn’t consider it a sin to begin with. Getting a tattoo is forbidden in the Bible… Read Leviticus 19:28; “ And you must not make cuts in your flesh for a deceased soul, and you must not put tattoo markings upon yourselves.
Some want to establish their identity or independence, while others get a tattoo in order to assert ownership of their body. However, the Bible encourages Christians: “Present your bodies a sacrifice living, holy, acceptable to God, a sacred service with your power of reason.”.
With tattoos, I’d ask these questions of myself: What does the witness of the Holy Spirit tell you about this choice? (John 14:26) What does it mean to honor God with my body? Or that my body is the temple of the Holy Spirit? (Col 3:17, 1 Cor 6:19-20) This tattoo may be permissible Scripturally. Is it beneficial? To my heart? To my witness?
Leviticus 19:28 says You shall not make any cuts on your body [in mourning] for the dead, nor make any tattoo marks on yourselves; I am the Lord. In other scriptures, God punished the Israelites for wearing earrings because they were doing it at a feast to the idol, Baal.
A person who desires a tattoo to garner attention or draw admiration has a vain, sinful focus on self. God sees the heart, and our motivation for anything we do should be to glorify God (1 Corinthians 10:31). Motivations for getting a tattoo such as “to fit in,” “to stand out,” etc., fall short of the glory of God.
Still, the important question remains: Is getting a tattoo a form of pagan, worldly worship forbidden by God today, or is it okay now for Christians to get tattoos? Perhaps the correct and most appropriate answer is both yes and no.
The other go-to argument against Christians getting tattoos is that our bodies are God’s temple. Thus if we get a tattoo we are causing damage to something sacred. Most people who use this argument will point to 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 claiming that tattooing is damaging our body which is God’s temple. At first glance that might make sense.
Yet the Council of Northumberland in England decreed in 787, the same year as the Second Council of Nicaea: “When an individual undergoes the ordeal of tattooing for the sake of God, he is greatly praised. But one who submits himself to be tattooed for superstitious reason in the manner of the heathens will derive no benefit thereof.”
Why did God prohibit tattoos in the Old Testament? Some commentators say the statement forbidding tattoos only refers to pagan customs for the dead. For example, the writers of the Zondervan NIV Bible Commentary believe that there is nothing “morally wrong” with tattooing, but that “these practices then, and also now in some places, were parts of heathen ritual” (vol. 1, 1994, p. 150).
Pastor John, almost daily we get email questions from listeners about tattoos. What, if anything, does the Bible say about tattoos? There is one explicit reference to tattooing in the Bible: Leviticus 19:28. It says: “You shall not make any cuts on your body for the dead or tattoo yourselves. I am the Lord.”