What Does The Bible Say About Tattoos and Piercings?

A couple looking off into the distance contemplating what the Bible says about tattoos and piercings.

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The subject of tattoos and piercings is highly debated within the Christian community.

Can Christians have tattoos and piercings?

Is it a sin?

To begin to answer such thought-provoking questions, we need to dive into the Bible to see what it says about the issue.

What Does The Bible Say About Tattoos and Piercings?

For the most part, when Christians discuss this issue they almost always point to the following Bible verse:

“Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves. I am the LORD.”

Leviticus 19:28

After reading this verse you might think,

“Why is there a debate over this? It is clearly a sin.”

However, this verse has been taken out of context.

To fully understand its meaning, we need to understand what was going on during the time period this was recorded.

What Was Happening When The Book of Leviticus Was Written?

According to Allen Parr, Moses warned the Israelites about not adapting practices of the pagan nations which included cutting your body for the dead and getting tattoos for the pagan gods.

This law and many other laws are part of the ceremonial law.

Finally, Allen Parr goes on to say that New Testament Christians are no longer required to observe the Old Testament ceremonial law.

Final Thoughts

It’s pretty clear that tattoos and piercings are not a sin.

For tattoos specifically, a more important question to ask is whether or not the tattoo you would like to get on your body is sending a Christian message.

For example, although the concept of getting a tattoo is not a sin, it’s probably a bad idea to get a tattoo that depicts a pagan god.

The best thing to do if you are considering getting a tattoo or piercing is to pray and ask God to guide you.

He will not lead you astray.

If you want to read more about tattoos and piercings, consider buying a Bible if you don’t already have one!

The Jerusalem Gift Shop has a very unique Bible that is made with olive wood.

Also, The American Bible Society has a wide variety of Bibles.

You can’t go wrong with either of these choices!