So, Can Christians Get Tattoos Or Not?
(Scriptures to be in the Body of the Article)
Floyd Allen, Editor-in-Chief, GOD’S GOOD NEWS GAZETTE
I’m sure many of you are thinking, “Martha, get out the Air Freshener Floyder has just opened up a ten day old can of worms!” And, I guess you could be right. Now, inasmuch as this is a Thought Provoker, I am just going to share a few verses of scripture with you and leave it at that. But, you will want to consider them all as your thoughts are, in fact, being provoked!
Let’s start with the verse that most people immediately jump to in regard to this topic: Leviticus 19:28 – Ye shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor print any marks upon you: I [am] the LORD. Seems pretty definitive, doesn’t it? The “swing point” may very well be that little punctuation mark right there in the middle, that “,”! Is this verse saying that we should “not make and cuttings in our flesh for the dead, nor print any marks for the dead,” OR is it saying that these are two separate activities and should be considered on their own merit?
Blast you, comma!!!
All right, so there is room for debate on Leviticus 19:28. So, let’s next go to Deut. 4:1 which, depending on your take, clarifies the situation OR makes it more muddled: Ye [are] the children of the LORD your God: ye shall not cut yourselves, nor make any baldness between your eyes for the dead. Again, it seems that this is talking about accomplishing these deeds on behalf of the dead. BUT, does that mean if, in tribute to our Mom, we have MOTHER tattooed on our arm that we are in violation of these verses?
So, now let’s take a quick look at
1 Corinthians 10:31 – Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. So, doesn’t it glorify God if we are tattooed with a cross and the phrase, “JESUS SAVES?” I mean, you are spreading the Saving Grace of Jesus every time someone just looks at you!
That sounds as though the tattoo might actually be a valid form of witnessing. The question still is, “Are Christians allowed to get Tattooed?” Well, now we will take a quick look at what Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 10:23 – All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not. WOW!!! Another great question: “Do Tattoos Edify?” The answer, I fear, depends on who you ask!
So far, is this clear as crystal or clear as mud? Welllll, it gets worser! (Worser must be a word, ‘cause I just used it!) I think we can all agree that “Christian” means “Christ Like.” That being the case, let’s now take a peek at
Revelation 19:16 – And he hath on [his] vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS. Again, we have to check out the way this verse is grammatically written! We are told that Jesus has written on His vesture (clothes) AND on his thigh KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS. Does that mean that Jesus has a tattoo proclaiming who He is? And, if we get tattooed are we only being “Christ Like?”
Have I provoked your thoughts yet, or just plain provoked you? Well, I do have some GOOD NEWS in all of this, and it’s found in Matthew 7:1 – Judge not, that ye be not judged.
See, we don’t have to worry about what others have chosen to do in regard to their bodies, we only have to be concerned about our own. Now, I have found some even GOODER NEWS (GOODER also must be a word ‘cause I also just used it!) in I Samuel 16:7b – For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” Purity of heart is what God is looking for/at, and, Praise God, that’s the way we all should want to be judged!
So, can Christians get Tattoos? Welllll – – this is a Thought Provoker, not a definitive dissertation!