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What does the Bible say about tattoos?

August 3, 2020

Although there is a lot of speculation, no biblical passage seems to ban tattoos. Leviticus 20:8 and Deuteronomy 5:31 both contain the requirement of piercing your skin with a needle or by any other means. Leviticus 12:12-14 reads “If anyone does not have an ear or a nose, clasps their hands behind their backs and does not look at the face, and is a stranger and is not a member of their household, they will be in danger of the judgment.” So, this would be a violation of the laws of God. But do we have a Bible verse that clearly bans tattoos? Not very. The Bible says that there is no need to wear any outward sign of worship to a priest, or to anyone else. Matthew 5:28,31-22 describes how we are to act. If a temple or a church is built, or someone comes to worship here, they must remove their visible signs of worship. Matthew 5:32 says, “…Then all the people answered, and said, Who is this that speaks to us in the gospel, and brings other gods before us? and bring us to the cross, and let us receive the gold of his testimony.” So, the Jews did not have a written prohibition against wearing an outward sign of worship, and certainly didn’t say, “No matter what we do, please do not tattoo us.”

If a tattoo is a real injury or death, is it in the Bible? A tattoo can be used to make an animal or a person “vulnerable” or “in the wrong.” However, this term is often used to apply to the human body, since it is so important that we are fit to be alive. However, it is clear that to wear a tattoo is to make a person “in the wrong”. The Bible does not condemn tattoos, but it does say they are to be used for “sins.” However, it does not say that all tattoos are bad, although there are certainly many types of them. There is also no mention of a written prohibition against tattooing, but that may have been the reason that Christians were given the legal basis we have today.

The following quote from Ezekiel Chapter 11 refers to the use of tattoos and tattoos were forbidden:

10 And it came about in the days of the king, behold, they were doing the same which I had commanded them: 11 And it came about in the days of the king, behold, they were doing as