WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT TATTOOS? - Betty Miller
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Topic: WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT TATTOOS? - Betty Miller
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Subject: WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT TATTOOS? - Betty Miller
Date Posted: 04/27/2011 at 8:17am
WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT TATTOOS?
by Betty Miller
The Bible warns us against tattoos in Leviticus 19:28 (Amplified) which says, "Ye shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor print or tattoo any marks upon you: I am the Lord."
I know some will have a hard time receiving this teaching because tattooing has now become an accepted practice in our society. However, just because society approves of something does not make it right in God's eyes. Our society at large, also approves of abortion and divorce as well. However, the Bible makes it clear that God doesn't approve of these things.
In sharing this teaching, I am not trying to condemn anyone who already has a tattoo; but rather to warn those who are considering getting one. God loves us, and even when we make mistakes in poor judgment, He doesn't condemn us, but rather tries to help overcome the consequences of those mistakes. Having a tattoo will not keep anyone from serving the Lord. We know some very godly people who have tattoos and are serving the Lord and their tattoos do not interfere with what God is doing through them. Anything Satan tries to use for evil, God can turn and use it for good when we commit totally to Him. God takes us as we are and uses us if we will yield to His will. God will use any of us when we come out of the world and start serving Him with our whole hearts to do His will. Our past is under the blood of Jesus and the sins and mistakes of the past will not hinder our God in our serving Him. Only a hard and unrepentant heart keeps us tied to the old life.
There are many dedicated and sincere Christian people that have tattoos. This article is not meant to say they do not love the Lord. God not only can use them, but does use them. The issue is not whether God can use someone, but rather should Christians pursue getting tattoos? Just because something is popular does not mean it is right. We should always examine things by the "roots and the fruits" of the thing in question. @
TATTOOING HAS WITCHCRAFT "ROOTS"
In addition to the above verse, Scripture also warns us not to disfigure our bodies in following verses:
1 Kings 18:28: "And they cried aloud, and cut themselves after their manner with knives and lancets, till the blood gushed out upon them."
Deuteronomy 14:1(Amplified): "Ye are the sons of the LORD your God; you shall not cut yourselves, nor make any baldness on your foreheads for the dead."
When it speaks here about doing this in relation to the dead; this was a witchcraft rite done to mourn or remember their dead. Therefore tattooing, cutting one's body and shaving one's head in defiance have their origin in witchcraft practices. Tattoos have their "roots" in witchcraft. Many young people today are doing these very things because of some evil witchcraft influences in their lives that they are unaware of. They do not realize that partaking of these can open the door to wrong and defiling influences in their lives. Evil videos, depraved rock music albums, wicked Internet games and violent movies are displaying evil trends in order to destroy our youth. Satanic tattoos, skin heads and other cultic rites are opening many of our children to demonization.
This is what makes it spiritually dangerous for people. People do not realize displaying a satanic mark or symbol can open the door for Satanic attack which allows the enemy entrance in their lives. It is not the mark itself, but rather the sin behind it. Today this practice is growing because of the spread of False Religions. Some people are so hideously covered with tattoos that their appearances look evil. Others, only have small tattoos that they believe are trendy or artistic.
Now this article is not meant to hurt or offend those that have tattoos, but rather to help people avoid getting tattoos that later on they might regret (especially young people). Many tattoos have evil and witchcraft themes that are portrayed as devil faces, skulls, ugly demonic signs, vulgar pictures, etc. These things hurt the human spirit, just as satanic displays of any kind do. Some tattoos are obviously Satanic as they look devilish, while others may be flowers or innocent looking names or objects but it is the spirit behind this compromise that makes it dangerous for a Christian. God loves the person who has tattoos just as He loves all of us. However, He would rather we did not deface our bodies in any fashion.
Some people object to using Old Testament scripture as a reference to tattoos since the New Testament doesn't speak of these things. However, in the New Testament we are even called to a higher law. We are to have God's laws written in our hearts. When we remain close to the Lord and obey Him, He can direct us in things that are not good for us. 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. In the New Testament, we are told to glorify God in our bodies. This would include not marring our bodies with tattoos, as the principles in the Bible clearly tell us it is wrong to defile our bodies.
OUR BODIES ARE A TEMPLE
When the Lord created man and woman and placed them in the garden along with His other creations. He spoke these words in Genesis 1:31, "And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day." When the Lord created the human body, He pronounced that the way He created it was very good. The Lord desires that our bodies be a reflection of His own beauty. When people tattoo their bodies they are tampering with what the Lord said was very good the way He made it. We should never mark our bodies as this is unnatural. Our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit and we are admonished not to defile them. Tattoos on one's body is like graffiti on a wall. Having tattoos on our bodies does not glorify God.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20: "What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."
What is it within man that makes us dissatisfied with the way the Lord made each of us? Most people are not happy with the way they look so they seek ways that will cause them to feel better about themselves or cause others to accept them. This is not wrong when it comes to having good grooming habits, but we need to understand true beauty comes from within, not from what we wear or how we look. When the emphasis is put on the outward appearance we can be ensnared in vanity, rejection, fear, pride and even racial discrimination. One of the most wonderful things about receiving the Lord is that He wants to deliver us from the outward things that we think we need to feel good about ourselves. When we are in sin we do not feel worthy or acceptable, but through Christ we are. When we can fully walk in the knowledge that we are acceptable before God through Christ, we are then free to be the person God made us to be without having to create a different image. Many people are consumed with trying to be different or become acceptable not only by getting a tattoo but by other things as well.
Some Christians argue that they have the name Jesus or some Biblical word or sign tattooed on their body so they can witness by the tattoo. However, God is more concerned how we are living our lives than by displaying a religious mark on our body. That is not the highest way He would have us witness. The Lord would rather us witness to others by the character of Christ being demonstrated in our lives than display Christian slogans that many times are not matched by the life of Christ. Certainly, the Lord can use a tattoo of a cross or other religious symbol when a Christian has one of these as God knows the heart of the one who truly wants to share Christ with others. However, it is not necessary to use any worldly thing to attract sinners. It is the Holy Spirit who draws people to Christ through any yielded vessel of the Lord. When we pray and witness to others the Lord will cause them to listen.
Just because a person has had a tattoo, it will not prevent God from using people to witness nor keep them from being a minister of God. God looks on the heart and can use different things to testify of Christ's love, even tattoos. However, well- meaning people can be deceived in their methods of evangelism.
THE YOUTH CULTURE AND TATTOOS
I really believe that one of the compromises we see today is parents allowing their children to mark or tattoo their bodies. Christians can look at someone who has tattoos all over them and know by discernment that it is not God, but the same Christians may get a small tattoo themselves or allow their children to have one without thinking anything about it. Toy makers today even sell washable ink transfer kits so children can mark their bodies with designs. This may seem like a harmless game but this is the enemy preparing or setting up our children early to receive real tattoos later on.
Many young people today do not realize that they may be sorry in the future that they chose to put tattoos on their bodies today. We know of many people who have said to us that they wish they had not been foolish when they were young as now they must live with the reminder of what they did when they were young. Only a few people have the money to have them removed by laser.
Years ago our young boys in the military had to go to foreign lands to get a tattoo, now tattoo parlors are everywhere because our nation here in the U.S.A. has opened its doors to many heathen practices and false religions. Another danger in receiving tattoos is a medical one through faulty procedures. One of the latest discoveries of another way AIDS is being transmitted is through contaminated ink or dirty tattoo needles. If fresh ink is not used, then the last person who was tattooed who had any kind of transmittable disease could leave behind that virus or bacteria. Not only Aids, but Hepatitis as well, has been traced to tattoo ink and needle contamination.
Some young people are having them done in defiance and rebellion to their parent's wishes because they want to be like their friends. This is displeasing to God as the Lord tells children to honor and obey their parents.
Colossians 3:20: "Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord."
The reason so many people are deceived on this issue, as well as others, is that there is a lack of knowledge in the things of God and a lack of discernment in the body of Christ. Hosea 4:6a says, "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge." Many have not been taught nor grounded in the Word of God. We as church leadership owe an apology to the youth of our day because many of us have failed in our responsibility to speak out on the issues of the day and have allowed the influences of the world to shape our society. Many Christian parents have failed in their responsibility also, as they have been too involved in chasing the American Dream instead of raising our children in the nurture and admonition of God as commanded in the Bible. Ephesians 6:4: "And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord."
One note of warning to the church on this subject of tattoos. We have a generation now of young people that love the Lord yet do not understand all of His ways. Soon we are also going to be seeing a great revival among the youth of the world. The youth of this day want a real cause to live and die for. Most have not seen true Christianity. However, when they do come to Christ many will be bringing their tattoos, dress, music and old habits with them right into the church. We must be sure that we do not despise them nor look down on them, but rather welcome and love them and gently teach them the ways of the Lord. We are called to love and pray for them and help them avoid making some of the mistakes we have made in our own walk with the Lord. We need to be true mothers and fathers to them. Yes, we must speak the truth in love, but let us make sure we are loving them and not condemning them. On the other hand, we must not accept all that they would desire to bring with them that would harm them and compromise the Word of God. We will all need God's grace to bridge the generation gap. We would recommend a great article written by a young Christian on this very subject. http://www.bible.com/bibleanswers_result.php?id=148 - Click here to read "Bridging the Generation Gap."
If you, through ignorance, have received a tattoo or allowed your children to have one, you should pray against any evil or witchcraft that may have come through the circumstances when that tattoo was received. Some people receive tattoos before they are "born again" and after they are touched by the Lord, they wish they had never had it done. The Lord loves you, so do not come under any condemnation, just pray over them and ask the Lord to remove any spiritual influences denoted by the tattoo and He will do it. The Lord looks on our hearts and motives and judges us by those, not our outward appearance. However, if the tattoo bothers you and you cannot cover it, you can have it removed by laser surgery.
The bottom line for this issue would be to ask the popular youth slogan, "What Would Jesus Do?" I don't believe we will ever see Jesus with a tattoo. The only scars on His body are the ones put there by evil men that crucified Him. They were not self inflicted. Overcomers will put away anything that leads to bigger compromises.
This article was taken from the Overcoming Life Digest (Jan./Feb. 1997 Issue); http://www.bible.com/overcoming-life/archives.php
- click here to view Digest
Betty Miller has written several books on other topics as well. To view titles or purchase those books click here: http://store.bible.com/
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TESTIMONY REGARDING TATTOOS
When I was in high school I really wanted to get a tattoo and a body piercing. So, during high school I got a body piercing (in my bellybutton). Shortly after I graduated from high school I got a tattoo. Neither action was well thought-out, but more of a spur of the moment thing. In fact, Ifm grateful that the man who did my tattoo wouldnft do what I originally wanted. He told me to go home and really think about it until I knew what I wanted and where I wanted it. If he would have done whatever I wanted at that moment, I would be even more regretful at this point. So, I ended up getting something I thought I would want for the rest of my life on my ankle. Now, about five years after I got my tattoo I have a scar where my body piercing was and a tattoo that I wish I didnft have.
I got a navel piercing and tattoo to be different and cool. After a while of having both, I didnft care much about showing them off. It really surprised me in a way when people would point to me and ask me about my tattoo. It started to annoy me that when certain people noticed my body piercing or tattoo, I suddenly had become more cool in their eyes. I felt like they liked me more, only after they had found out that I was the type of person who would have a body piercing or tattoo.
Shortly after I got my tattoo, I realized that a lot more people from many different groups of society were getting body piercings and tattoos. The trend of tattoos and body piercings was becoming popular among more and more people regardless of what "group" they were in (i.e. the "rebellious" crowd, as well as the more average straight-laced group of people).
After a few years I got sick of my body piercing because so many other people were doing the same thing. Then it came down to deciding whether I wanted metal or a scar. I chose the scar.
After I was touched by the Lord I was told by a friend that body piercing and tattoos were wrong because the Bible said so. I was immediately defensive and confused. I wanted to follow the Lord and do what was right in His eyes. So, while I was with my friend one time we decided to look it up in our NIV Bibles for ourselves. We found Leviticus 19:28: "Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves. I am the Lord."
We couldnft find anything that directly said you should not pierce your body. In fact, I was surprised to see in certain parts of Scripture that women wore nose rings in the Old Testament. For instance, Abrahamfs servant gave Rebekah a nose ring as a gift when he knew he had found the right wife for Isaac (Genesis 24:34-51 NIV). I believe, however, that nose rings were common in their culture, just as common as earrings have been in American culture for a long time. Therefore, there is not the same reasons behind Rebekah wearing a nose ring as someone in America might have today. It would be as simple as her being given earrings today.
I decided to pray about whether it was right for me to have a body piercing and tattoo. During the time I was praying and seeking God about this the Lord led me to Scriptures such as 1 Corinthians 6:19 NIV: "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body."
I was also convicted by 1 Corinthians 3:16 NIV: "Donft you know that you yourselves are Godfs temple and that Godfs Spirit lives in you? If anyone destroys Godfs temple, God will destroy him; for Godfs temple is sacred, and you are that temple."
I felt that I had harmed my body by tattooing it and piercing it. I passed out when I got my body pierced and came close to passing out when I got my tattoo. Basically, I went through a lot of pain to look cool. I felt that it was wrong for me to have pierced and tattooed my body, especially because of the reasons behind both--vanity and pride. Between vanity and pride and harming my body that the Lord had created I knew that I had sinned. Now I can see that I was not honoring God with my body by piercing it and putting a permanent mark on it. Although I was able to remove my piercing, my tattoo is not something that I can just wash away. It is on my leg to stay.
I know the Lord has forgiven me. His grace and love are so amazing. I was living a sinful, ungodly life and then I found the Lord. Jesus died for us all and God raised Him from the dead so that our sins can be forgiven and that we may be cleansed of our iniquities. Now, we can enter into an amazing love relationship with Him. God did this all through Jesus! The point of this testimony is to share how I was convicted of sin in my life. It doesnft matter what the sin was. We all need to repent and follow the Lord. If we love Him, we will obey Him. John 14:15 NIV: "If you love me, you will obey what I command."
1 John 5:3-5 NIV: "This is love for God: to obey his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God."
Blessings and Love,
Rev. Daniel Garza
White Wings Int'l Healing Ministry
mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org - email@example.com
Posted By: Pamela Susette
Date Posted: 05/16/2011 at 9:58pm
I personally do not believe that Christians should get TATTOOS and all those pieces but you need to use some New Testament scriptures concerning tattoos. I haven't found anything in the New Testament scriptures forbidding tattoos. Also just because some ancient people use tattoos as a form of occult worship or witchcraft does not mean people do this today. God looks at the heart at why people do what they do not what someone did along time ago?
The Christmas tree is also a pagan object but yet Christians across America put up a Christmas tree during the Christmas season. Just because some ancient pagans worship a decorated tree doesn't mean that we worship a Christmas tree when we put it up. Each year I carve a Jesus O Lantern. I carve two hearts for the eyes a cross for the nose and the name of Jesus in the smile. I had a Christian brother condemn me for this that my Jesus O Lantern was cultic. Just because some ancient person carves a pumpkin to make a good luck charm doesnt mean I do the same when I carve my Jesus O Lantern. I carve it to be a witness on Halloween night. This is the only night in the year that the children come to me and I cam going to share Christ with them.
Jesus mentions in scriptures that we cant mix the Old with the New. I know that the Old Testament says no tattoos but you have to back this up with New Testament scriptures. Can you find the word tattoos in the New Testament? I sure dont find anything in the New Testament that we are to tithe ten percent of our pay checks to the church and the very few scriptures on tithing in the New Testament is referring back to the Old Testament. What the New Testament says is be a cheerful giver and meet the needs of the saints if you have he means to meet it. Christians need to be careful that what they teach is in the New Testament and not Old Testament.
The Holy Spirit convicts each one of differently and we cant put our own convictions on another.
Love is patience, Love is kind.
Posted By: Brenda Deese
Date Posted: 05/26/2011 at 10:42am
Wonder how many oppose tattoos with their spouse, children, their own pierced ears?
What gets me is the way Christians usually treat other Christians who have tattoos - usually it's with absolutely not one minute bit of love. We're hearers of The Word but often not doers - me included.
Posted By: Alexa T Heyns
Date Posted: 05/26/2011 at 12:42pm
You cannot just exclude the Old Testament from your thinking. Jesus himself said that the Law will never pass away. While we are not under the condemnation of the Law it is still there to help us stay out of trouble. The Law is rather like God being the parent laying down the rules.
Don't stick your finger in the plug.
Don't play with matches.
But instead He says things like don't mix God and the world. Don't get involved in weird and wonderful religions. Don't kill, cheat, steal, murder. Don't look at your neighbour's stuff with possessive longing. Don't do immoral things. Don't stick holes in your body or mark it. Don't .... and all the other don't's there are in the Old Testament.
We have the cross and grace to help us if and when we do do something 'unprofitable' as Paul puts it but that doesn't mean we can just ignore the strictures God has seen fit to give us, for our own good.
Posted By: Bill Evans
Date Posted: 05/26/2011 at 7:22pm
Listen I am covered with them,Did I get any of them after I got saved No I am stuck with them,Do they bother me No,Do I wish I never got one,Yes, Here is my two cents,If God tells you to get a tattoo go right ahead,otherwise I would steer clear of them.But love the tattooed person regardless of his choices
Posted By: Gayle Getz
Date Posted: 05/26/2011 at 8:31pm
Amen,,,'love the tatooed person regardless of his choices." I like what a prophet once said about tatooed folks coming to Jesus, (quote), "just think here they are ALL decorated for JESUS". I really appreciated his sharing this as it took the 'branding' label off these precious ones and also the condemning spirit lifted from the place.
Shalom-nothing missing, nothing broken-Gayle
Posted By: Don Rice
Date Posted: 06/04/2011 at 11:13am
Yes, we should love everyone, tats or no tats.
If you are a witch and you get a tatoo, your bigger problem is not the tatoo. If you are in the occult and you get a tatoo, your bigger problem again, is not the tatoo, the problem is in your heart. I received all my tats after I was born again. None have anything to do with occult or witchcraft. I have an Israeli flag flying from a wooden cross, amoungst other things. If you were to see, you would problebly come to the conclusion, I might be a Jesus Freak. I do not discount the Old Testament, but in context, the scriptures used in this thread are in relation to practices in honor, or greiving the dead. I don't do that. I further have nothing to do with Christmas, Easter, Halloween, or any other pagan holiday. My concern is not going to be tatoo's, or holiday's, My concern is, Have you been born again? Do you love Jesus? Where will you spend eternity? I don't care what you look like, smell like, if you have ear ring's in your nose, with purple and green hair. Have you met My Saviour? Have you been filled with the Holy Ghost? Do you know Jesus loves you and has a plan for your life? This is the message we need to be loving the world with, all the way to heaven.
Praise His Holy Name!
Posted By: Alexa T Heyns
Date Posted: 06/04/2011 at 12:12pm
Just out of curiousity, are you as so many are, once they have a tattoo, addicted to getting another one?
Posted By: Don Rice
Date Posted: 06/04/2011 at 2:05pm
Not really, I have five. I want one more. I have a picture of a lions face with a lamb laying in the grass in front of the lion. That should do it. This one will be expensive, and things seem to be getting tight, so I may have to wait. I have heard others say that.
Posted By: Alexa T Heyns
Date Posted: 06/04/2011 at 10:49pm
So you do really want another one and this one might 'be it'. Have you said those words in the period between any of the other tattoos, you know before the urge to get 'just one more', before you start looking for a good picture and feeling of 'oh I just want this one' sets in?
I have not asked God if this desire is because the reason people get tattoos in the first place is because of some unmet need / self esteem issue which is only temporarily satisfied by the tattoo, or whether the act of getting one opens the door to some spiritual forces, or if the kind of person who gets tattoos is some one with an tendency to an addictive personality, or if the rush of the pain in getting one kind of feels good and so people seek that feeling again, or if its a combination of all those factors but the fact is I haven't spoken to a single person who has a tattoo who hasn't at some point wanted another one. Even if they don't always act on it, the feeling has still been there. And any time a person has a feeling like that, which is contrary to normal behavior (pain is not good and tattoos are ugly and largely socially unacceptable) I think hmmm something is not right.
Posted By: Don Rice
Date Posted: 06/06/2011 at 12:31am
The pain wasn't to bad, just in tender part of the arms. The only rush I got, is when it was over. If there would be another reason not to get another it would be the pain. I don't think my tatoos are ugly, they are very clean and easy to see. I don't have a problem with being or not being socially unacceptable, and worries about self esteem is the first stage of the pride of life. Most people look at me funny anyway. I love the Lord with all my heart, and that can be socially unacceptable too.
Posted By: Jac Gagnon
Date Posted: 06/11/2011 at 5:18pm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BIeLvfgsLWM&feature=playe r_embedded - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BIeLvfgsLWM&feature=playe r_embedded
They will know we are Christians by our love.
I praise You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because You have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children...
Posted By: Jac Gagnon
Date Posted: 06/11/2011 at 6:04pm
or maybe try some piecings instead.
I praise You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because You have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children...