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Are Tattoos Wrong

Is getting a tattoo sinful?

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 ---Larry on 12/17/07
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//But how many guys regret their "Annie" tattoo when they decide to marry to marry Jane.//

Amen Donna, been there done that. Wish i hadn't got it, but there are more important things I wished I hadn't done. I keep them covered with the blood of Christ and go on with my life.
---michael_e on 6/2/11

But how many guys regret their "Annie" tattoo when they decide to marry to marry Jane.
---Donna66 on 5/31/11

Donna, reminds me of a favorite painting...

Google the image rockewell tattoo
---NurseRobert on 6/1/11

I see no way in which a tattoo (depending on what it is, of course) can, in itself, be called sinful. But it should be an object lesson on how permanent some ill-considered actions can be.
(Like sin, the effects can last longer and be uglier than we ever anticipated)

A tattoo of medical information might be a good idea since the writing can not be obliterated. But how many guys regret their "Annie" tattoo when they decide to marry to marry Jane.
Worse, the distress of a newly born-again Christian who is permanently displaying demonic symbols.

It's not painless nor cheap to have a tattoo removed.
---Donna66 on 5/31/11

We are to respect our temples(bodies) that mean no graffitti! Our bodies does not belong to us they belong to Jesus(those who are saved).And besides I like my beautiful skin. I won't to continue to love its beauty until the day I die. No tattoo is more beautiful than real skin.
---Robyn on 5/23/11

Tattooing the temple of God is like grefitti on a building - it's against the law and, besides, it shows your territory is of the world.
---Steveng on 5/22/11

Good advice Cluny. We do have such lists as we have lived on a first name basis with
911 and EMC. What I meant is getting my wife's allergic reactions tatooed on her when
I said, "Maybe I will check with her about getting it in writing! "

Of course she does not like tatooes but I have no objections to people getting them.
---Nana on 5/19/11

Nana, I carry a list of my meds and conditions in my wallet at all times. It's been a big convenience on more than one occasion when referred to a specialist who wanted to know all my meds.

I have a friend who does the same thing, and it's been a life-saver when he's had to call 911.

This is a practice I would recommend to all.

Christ is risen!
---Cluny on 5/19/11


I am glad to hear of your kidney function stabilized! My wife has a bracelet which lists all her ill reactions to common meds. It keeps on breaking and that is a worrysome thing. Maybe I will check with her about getting it in writing!
---Nana on 5/19/11

Cluny ... I think you know the answer to that question

I think you are asking it only to point out the stupidity of those who come up with blanket condemnations

But I am sure there will be those here who will say it would be a sin to have that tattoo.

So I will say that you definitely would not be sinning, and I would encourage this very sensible, practical and possibly life saving action.
---alan8566_of_UK on 5/19/11

Over three years ago, I had a fistula put into my left arm to make a port for kidney dialysis.

Since then, my kidney function has gone up from 19% (at 15% dialysis is started) to 49%, and has stabilized there. Thank God, dialysis is postponed indefinitely.

However, my left arm is now useless for taking BP and IVs.

I've been toying with getting a medical tattoo saying, "NO IV OR BP L ARM."

Would this be a sin?

Christ is risen!
---Cluny on 5/15/11

except "a" tattoo most often leads to another and another and one never knows what THING they encounter that can lead to addiction ...some are addicted to food others are addicted to alcohol and the list goes on

painting ones skin may not be spelled out as a sin however NT is clear to treat our bodies as the temple of God

there is no honor in marking up ones body ...yet anything that can be done for harm most want to do ...and do more of
---Rhonda on 5/14/11

Cosmetics used to enhance a persons persoanl appearance is not a sin, but tatoos can be done in a distasteful manner. I have seen people with tatoos covering large areas of their skin, and I think it looks like Too Much. A little one may be nice, but that does not mean that more would be nicer. I personally have a tatoo that I got in the military, and I am currently having it removed by using TAT-Med to erase it.
---Eloy on 5/10/11

Leviticus 19:28 must be kept in its right context by reading the two verses before it. Lit.Hb: "You all will not eat with the blood: neither will you all use enchantment nor soothsaying. You all will not round the sides of your heads, neither will you mar the sides of your beard. You all will not make any cuttings in your flesh nor write any marks upon you for the dead: I am Yhwh." Lv.19:26-28. This cutting of the hair and of cutting in the flesh and of writing in ones flesh is in reference to mourning for the dead, and it is not prohibiting all cutting and marking of the flesh for every occassion, else if so then the hair on the sides of all of our heads and beards would be grown over the years and come to be yards and yards long.
---Eloy on 5/9/11

Tattoos are seen as art, also as heathen marks. Us being the created, can't justify either. So let's leave that up to the Creator. As Christians we should know, God wants us to live holy & righteous. Would getting a tattoo.. which requires money that can be given to the poor, or time that can be spent in prayer, & a showcasing of flesh that we all know isn't Heavenly??? Be smart folks. God Bless!
---SaintMac on 5/8/11

In Ethiopia, it's considered a great act of piety and faith for Christians there to have a beautiful cross tattooed on their foreheads or right hands so they can't take the mark of the beast.
---Cluny on 2/23/11

Interesting brother Cluny, interesting. However in the U.S. most tattoos have a pagan origin and are simply done because other people have done so.
Watch an old game of any sport on ESPN classic and notice how few players had any tattoos. Its stunning. What has changed since then beyond the coarseness of society?
---larry on 3/2/11

If we're gonna go there then lets all pay attention to ...

Lev 19:28
Ye shall not round the corners of your heads, neither shalt thou mar the corners of thy beard.

Why just attack tattoos with the Old Testament laws? Why not evil haircuts as well? How many of us men would be guilty of breaking Lev 19:28.... my my my

I believe this entire topic falls under Romans 2:3. Trying to find justification by judging the sins of others when we are equally as guilty of breaking the law on a daily basis.
---CraigA on 2/26/11

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That all depends on whether you see ink on your skin as causing harm to the temple of the Holy Spirit.

If it is then we should punish our children severely for drawing cartoons on their hands during lunch break at school. Im goin with stoning them to death like in the Old Testament! Get real.

Im convinced that at times people (out of fear) make God out to be far more harsh than what He is.

A tattoo of a demon stabbing Jesus with a spear...yeah that is evil and desecrates the temple duh

A tattoo of Christ holding out his hands in love... evil? really?
---CraigA on 2/26/11

Considering your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit what's the point of a tattoo anyway. I mean please?
---larry on 2/23/11

Is Leviticus 19:28 admonishing tattoos and cuttings, in general, or just when either are done in memory of the dead?

If it's in general, then piercings of any type are wrong, too, no?
---AlwaysOn on 2/23/11

In Ethiopia, it's considered a great act of piety and faith for Christians there to have a beautiful cross tattooed on their foreheads or right hands so they can't take the mark of the beast.
---Cluny on 2/23/11

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Something else--

There are such things as medical tattoos.

Sometime they are put on people undergoing radiation therapy so the tech will know where to aim the rays.

I had an AV fistula put in my left arm to make a port for dialysis. Thank God it's not been necessary! But I've been toying with having a warning tattooed inside my left arm so it's not used for blood pressure or IV should I be unconscious.
---Cluny on 2/23/11

---I am more along the lines that a tattoo draws attention to one's self---

I think that depends on the tattoo. Ive seen some beautiful tattoos of Christ holding out his hands showing the holes in them.
---CraigA on 2/22/11

our bodies are the temples, We donot need anything like tatoos on us. If someone got one & was not a christian, you learn from it ,move on.Do not get anymore. remember the older you get it won't look as beautiful anymore when the skin ages.
---candice on 2/22/11

You think you're going to have that tattoo in Heaven?
If you don't think so, and all corruption is wiped away, it would stand to reason that a tattoo is considered corruption.
Now, if you think your tattoo will remain in Heaven, that is a belief that may be hard to prove scripturally.
I am more along the lines that a tattoo draws attention to one's self and changes that body God has given you in a purposeful sense.
1Co 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.
Rom 14:21 [It is] good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor [any thing] whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak.
---micha9344 on 2/22/11

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Leviticus also says I can stone my neighbor for working on the Sabbath, I can own slaves and sell my daughter into slavery...

So why are tattoos wrong?
---NurseRobert on 2/22/11

so all of you who quote say that getting a tattoo is wrong, are just putting people under the law.
---mikeO on 2/22/11

I believe in what God said in Lev.19:28 (quoted by other responders before this) that we should not print marks on our bodies.
---Adetunji on 2/21/11

I am a Christian, since I was young i've wanted a tattoo, but people have warned me from doing it because its seen as "sinful" by some. They've quoted scriptures and declared their opinions at me! But the way I see it, if God didn't let me in to heaven based on whether i had a tattoo or not, then everything else I have read about God'S GRACE is for naught.
---jazzcakes on 2/20/11

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My youngest son took great interest in tatoos a couple of years ago and threatened to get a tatoo as soon as he was over 18. I reminded him that tatoos are the method of marking animals and slaves...and not to be forgotten, the Jews in the Nazi camps.
Horses have their upper lip tatooed as a means of asserting their registration. (thorobred racing horses and others)
The connotation of the tattoo signifying a mark of being "owned" was repugnant to him, and I haven't heard any more about it.
---Elaine on 5/15/10

"tatoo" comes from the words "tat", "mark" + "tow", "draw". Thus "tatoo" means, "to draw marks", that is (on the skin). It would depend upon why and what is being tatooed in order to rightly judge whether or not a tatoo is sinful. People get pictures or words or names or symbols tatooed in their skin. I think it is a kind of style or statement that is being displayed or worn by the wearer of the tatoo, moreso than the tatoo being classified whether or not it is sinful. Now if I would tatoo my body with some kind of antiChrist symbol, then yes that would be sinful: but on the otherhand if I tatooed my body with a Christian symbol, then no that would not be considered sinful.
---Eloy on 5/14/10

I heard the story of a guy who got saved and had all these tattoos all over his body,and he was sorry he had ever gotten them,and he prayed and asked God what to do,and within time,all the tatoos disapeared,they faded all away,as though he had never gotten tattooed in the first place.
---L. on 5/13/10

Yes, the bible does say that we shouldn't put marks on our bodies, but it also says in Leviticus 19 that we shouldnt wear clothes that are made from two different fibers, that men are to never trim their beards, you arent supposed to trim your sideburns, you cant eat meat that isnt cooked well done, you cant plant more than one type of seed in your field, and several other things. If all these are still applicable today, than we are all constantly in sin. According to God no sin is worse than the other, its us humans who have said that one sin is worse than the other. Also the Bible says that we are not judge one another.
---Zack on 5/9/10

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To get a tattoo is not wise, but I don't believe it is wise to judge those who have tattoos either, based solely on the fact that they may have a tattoo.
---Anne on 4/3/09

Leviticus 19:28 forbids tattooing. And Jesus said Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets, I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. (Matthew 5: 17,18 NIV). Of course, its almost impossible for us to keep the Law down to the smallest letter or the least stroke of a pen, but I happen to know its very easy NOT to get tattooed....
---Frank on 4/3/09

There was a cult in the late 70's that had "prostitutes for Christ" these women would prostitute themself and then try to lead others to their church. does that justify prostitution, or is prostitution still an abomination? as such tattoos are not justified just because they express a christian symbol or thought. for those that have them i say. ask God to forgive you, and do not try to find excuses.God forgives and he will not look twice at the fact that you ghot cheated, yet do not justify sinn, for that God will not forgive.
---Andy on 2/19/09

I can attest to tattoos being a major influence in ones life. Not just for the person receiving the tattoo, but for those observing that person as well.
I'm a Marine. And as such, it's really easy for most people to overlook the tattoos on my body. But for me, it's so much more than supporting my Corps. And my God. I have the Marine Corps Emblem on my left shoulder, and the hebrew script for, "Yeshua Heals" (left wrist), and "Yeshua Saves" (right wrist). Time and time again I've been able to witness to marines in my platoon because of those tattoos on my wrists. I'm so blessed. God has turned something as simple as a tattoo, into a mission field. OORAH.

-Lcpl. Starr, USMC-
---Steven on 1/22/09

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jason I totally agree with you. But just because tattoos may be no worse than wearing bad tee-shirts, or piercing your ears, or other forms of vanity, doesn't make it right. Two wrongs dont make a right. I have tattoos on both arms, once of a cross, one of a grim reaper, and some other stuff. I regret them very much. I doubt in heaven God will leave the tattoos on my arm...if God doesn't want something in heaven, it's probably not good to have down here either.
---Todd on 5/20/08

I got a cross tattoo last year and I absolutely love it. I do not think that it is a sin, rather I see tattoos as a form of expression just like any other art form. Tattoos can be just as beautiful as skin. In fact, I am planning on my next tattoo in a week or two. I do not think you can pick and choose what bible verses to support and what not to so that it fits your personal beliefs. Tattoos are beautiful!
---Mandy on 5/18/08

Tatoos are not at all bad because of the picture, yet its origin is IDOLATRIC, that is why we should not do it when a born-again, besides the new testament does speak about modesty, so to look at the vanity sin of your brother/sister for a justification is like going to a prrostitute because the elder in church is a divorced man
---andy on 2/28/08

So, I guess if you eat bleached bread, cut your sideburns, or pierce your ears you are sinning according to Old Testament scripture. Tattoos are no worse than the vanity/envy so many live by on a daily basis (fixed hair, style of clothing, vehicles we drive, cell phone we carry, etc.) Maybe, just maybe the t-shirt on one's back is a worse message than the ink on another's skin. One's removable and one's not.just a thought.
---Jason on 2/27/08

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Yep the heart's where God Looks and if it's rotton and full of sin/rebelion it will be judged acording to the fruits it repesents. It's sad that God said hide his words in your heart not tatoo it onto your skin, thats pathetic/worldly and perverting the the gospel for your own fleshly desires. Your not surposed to tattoo your flesh you were purchased from the devil for Christ so why flirt with the world. what will you gain by gaining the whole wide world and then loose your soul through ignorance.
---Carla5754 on 1/26/08

No problem Rob. To err is human to forgive is divine. I forgive. I feel divine today.
---Robyn on 1/23/08

How many people who hate tattoos because of the Old Testament reasons against it also support the injunction against wearing clothes worn from more than one type of fibre (Deuteronomy 22:11)?

This isn't a post in favour of tattoos, I'm not a big fan of them myself. The post about them 'looking ungodly' bothered me a little - God knows whether something is really ungodly or more important than someone being His child, no matter what other people think.
---Rob on 1/22/08


I misquoted you and made it sound like all you cared about was other people's appearances and were a really judgemental person.

I'm sorry, I'm in the UK, it's 3am and I've just discovered this site so I've spent over an hour browsing it when I really should have given in and hit the hey (or hay, even).

I'll take more care in future (or have a more readily available supply of caffeine!). I'm sorry anyway, forgive me *guilty puppy look*?
---Rob on 1/22/08

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God surely looks at the heart of the matter. The question is, "Why are you getting a tattoo?" Up until the early 1960's, tattoos and body piercings were for pirates, slaves, and anyone against authority. Now it's a cultural fad. Do you want a tattoo or body piercing to glorify God or bring attention of others to yourself? The Scriptures proves the latter.
---Steveng on 1/22/08

I got a tattoo on my leg after I accepted Christ into my life to remind me He is there for me and so I will never turn down the wide harmful path of my life again.
---Amanda on 1/22/08

1 Cor 10:23

all things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expeidient, all things are lawful for me,but I will not be bought under the power of any,

Pauls example is according to the Gospel of Christ and he did not display them or encourage worldy behavior (N/T) so I guess It would be inappropriate because tatoo's do not glorify God but brings attention to the flesh.
---Carla5754 on 1/22/08

Its not very godly or attractive to me. But if the tattoo is not visible. I guess it would be ok. But why would someone want to mark their bodies up like this? Pretty skin is more attractive than tattoos and ugly markings on the body.Nice clean, well cared for skin is beautiful. Any color.
---Robyn on 1/22/08

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I see a lot of what people think. The only scripture being used is from the old testament. The laws that were written in the O.T. are no longer valid. Read Heb. 8:8-13. The bible also says JUDGE NOT LEST YE BE JUDGED! Matthew 7:1
---Denise on 1/22/08

There are places in the Old Testament that shows God is not pleased with marking, cutting or piercing ones body. A real tattoo does all of these things. However, what's in the mind and heart is what counts. Your words are what is condemning, either by your mouth or by your writing even if it is on your body. (Matt. 12:37)
---Dr._Rich on 12/25/07

not if it is in the name of jesus christ. do not wear the cross - carry it. A O.
---peter_steele on 12/23/07

I like how you stated it, every other nit picky thing. When we cease to love each other and start saying God does not like, what we do not like, we need to get some real prospective about how He sees things. He looks at us differantly then we do. Then we have to remember that our lives as believers are to show love so that others will know how much God loves them. We become the light of God so they know who He really is from our example.
---marge on 12/21/07

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If we are nit picky then the world will believe He is nit picky.
---marge on 12/21/07

I got a tatoo before I was saved - it is not ugly - it is a crying sun - it just means something to me but JESUS LOVES ME, THIS I KNOW, BECAUSE THE BIBLE TELLS ME SO and I LOVE JESUS and I know HE knows!!! PEACE ^j^
---Karen on 12/21/07

If a person receives a tattoo prior to the Lord being revealed unto them it is no different than any other sin. The same grace covers drugs, unbelief, catfish sanwiches, clothing of divers materials, women wearing pants, guys wearing skirts, women who cut their hair, men who don't and every other imaginable sin that could be nit picked from now unto the trumpet sounds.
---Frank on 12/20/07

I am seeing a lot of "we shouldn't" and "should not" but if we were to be tattooed and then receive Jesus as our savior, is it a sin, I believe not. It is not about our outward appearance but what is in our heart. That is where God looks and sees. The tattoo puts US off not God. He loves us and He is impressed with our heart and what we do in LOVE.
---marge on 12/20/07

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No. Tatoo's are not sinful.
---sue on 12/20/07

YES! The bible is very clear when it says that our bodies are the temple of the Holy spirit. Therefore I think that you should not get tattos, because they are defiling the temple of God. Not to mention the fact that when you get saved Jesus from that piont on, lives inside of you, do you think that He wants to be represented by someone covered in permanent ink? Now if you get tattos before you get saved, what can you do? That's the question.
---Michelle on 12/18/07

About tatoos:
"Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves. I am the LORD."
But look what it says in the verse right before that:
"Do not cut the hair at the sides of your head or clip off the edges of your beard".
According to this standard, I suppose I'm in sin due to having my beard trimmed frequently. Wearing clothes of different fabrics is also against Levitical Law. 1/2 cotton, 1/2 polyester, also sin. Tisk tisk.
---j._nonymous on 12/18/07

Yes....and yes again.I'll tell you why.
Ispeak for God when i say this.
He made our Terrestrial bodies[flesh]
And we misuse and abuse them,such as tattoos
and holes in the body of both the male and female gender,we disgrace his creation and
give no respect to His deity.
If i bought you a bike,and you punch holes in the tires, and bent the frame of it.
This action shows a lot about what you think
of me buying it for you.Read my profile.
I am jack8773.Be prepared
---Jack_8773 on 12/17/07

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The message and the motive is a factor also. To him who thinks it is sin, to him it is. There is no way of truthfully saying they are all sinful.
I don't have any and don't plan on it. I've got much better things to spend money on.
---john on 12/17/07

Our bodies are the temple of the Holyghost. I think it is a sin according to the person who is getting a tattoo, is it their God? Or they got one out of ignorance, they just did not know better.
---trell on 12/17/07

They're ugly no matter how many bright colors you use.

When you look at a tatoo, a rose on an ankle or a butterfly on your shoulder, or one big massive tatoo that covers your entire body - they're not a pretty sight.
If you're a Christian now, why would you want more of them?
It's strange, but I almost have to turn my head when I see someone covered from head to foot in tatoos. I can see why God forbid them in the OT.
---Chad on 12/17/07

The most difficult ones to look at are those on the face. You are defacing God's property.
---Chad on 12/17/07

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That which is not of faith is sin. You decide.
---Mima on 12/17/07

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