You shall not make any cuts in your body for the dead nor make any tattoo marks on yourselves: I am the LORD.
19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.
I would like to ask you this question. Have you ever wondered why a person’s first name is known as his/her Christian name? It is because when a person is baptized, he is given a name, which recognizes him as an individual in society and though his last name ties him to his family, his first name or Christian name as I should say, is what distinguishes him as an individual called out of the mediocrity that is this world into Jesus Christ. Owing to European colonisations over most of the world in the past, such a naming system in now standard around the globe but there are still many cultures where there is no clear system as such as having a first name, which as I said is also called a person’s Christian name, this today is regardless of a person’s religious background. In India, many people call each other by their last name because though we have made significant progress on the people’s equality front, there is still a significant element of the caste system present today, which appears to be engrained in the people’s mindset because calling a person by their last name reveals the nature of that person’s caste and work.
If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.
Tattoos were purposed to work in a similar manner, they indicated a person’s social status in society and served to mark the kind of pagan rituals a person was entrusted with in that society, rituals ranging from human sacrifice to harvest preparations, as practiced in that culture. Tattoos were also used by warriors to instill fear in their enemies. The role of tattoos hasn’t changed much, back in the day tribals used tattoos to mark their own and today gangsters use tattoos as well to brand members who are aligned to them, just like we do with cattle. Of course, there are people who voluntarily go in for tattoos but such is the nature of their unbelief because they desire to conform more to society concerning what is cool and happening than choosing to conform to a lifestyle of truth by King Christ (Jn14:6) because these poor souls haven’t tasted the regenerating power of God to help them walk by faith and not by sight.
5 Thus says the LORD, “Cursed is the man who trusts in mankind And makes flesh his strength, And whose heart turns away from the LORD.
6 “For he will be like a bush in the desert And will not see when prosperity comes, But will live in stony wastes in the wilderness, A land of salt without inhabitant.
7 “Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD And whose trust is the LORD.
8 “For he will be like a tree planted by the water, That extends its roots by a stream And will not fear when the heat comes; But its leaves will be green, And it will not be anxious in a year of drought Nor cease to yield fruit.
9 “The heart is more deceitful than all else And is desperately sick; Who can understand it?
A look at Mat 7:13-14 makes us wonder why the road to destruction is broad while the path to God is narrow. The thing is from the fall; Adam has passed to all his posterity a standard of righteousness which is each their own and yet separate from the righteousness of God. So, it is that a person is naturally given to ungodliness, making the traversing of the road to destruction well within a person’s nature. Hence people naturally conform to wickedness in society. The funny thing about such demonic deception, prevailing in society is that these same emasculated people who condone homosexuality in society, somehow have come to figure that wickedness is more fearsome/potent than Godliness and this reflects in the nature of their tattoos as well because on the surface they look vicious but the very fabric of their nature says they are emasculated of strength and are nothing more than squatters waiting to be overthrown as just payment for their poor stewardship and unbelief over all that they were given charge of. Such was the case of Adam; He was given stewardship over all the earth (Gen 1:28) but his fall to sin corrupted the earth over which he was given stewardship and so today creation itself is anxiously waiting for the revealing of God’s adopted sons (Rom 8:31) who by the saving merit of Christ (Rom 5:17), shall take their rightful place as faithful stewards overall the earth.
1Sam 15 (in the context Lev 19:28)
22 Samuel said, “Has the LORD as much delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices As in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams.
23 “For rebellion is as the sin of divination, And insubordination is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, He has also rejected you from being king.”
Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
Now in dealing with the subject of Christian tattoos, I would like to site scripture from 1 Sam 15:1-23. We ought to understand that when God clearly commands something as He has done concerning tattoos in Lev 19:28, there are no two ways about it but if one acts like he/she knows better then that undermines the wisdom of God and God then is not really Lord/King over his/her heart because he/she has proven himself/herself to be a self-serving fool, who thinks he/she can do better by himself/herself than by obeying God’s instructions concerning morality.
“But this is the covenant which I make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the LORD, “I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.
Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said, “I will dwell in them and walk among them; And I will be their God, and they shall be My people.
The world has the uncanny ability to go about doing things without knowing what they are doing. In most cases people do what they do, simply because everybody is doing it. You name it: piracy, porn, fornication; people’s excuse for doing it, is simply because everybody is doing it and such is the case with tattoos as well. However, if you were to check the statistics of social behaviour that is prevalent among people who wear tattoos, you would come to understand the implication of wilful disobedience unto God. Another reason that goes against any such thing as Christian tattoos is that the Christian life is lived not according to the world but according to God and so when we understand the mindset of the world in their unbelief versus the mindset we are to have in Christ, we learn that unlike the Christian who lives loving God first and then neighbour at par with himself, the unbeliever lives serving himself first while his neighbour is not at par with himself but is merely the means by which they each serve their own lawless appetite viz. adultery, covetousness and other aspects of sin. It is in this manner that a gulf exists between the believer and the unbeliever in creating and sustaining trusting relationships and so a believer cannot use to serve God what an unbeliever uses to serve his/her own appetite, which in this cases is tattoos.