Christian body art is becoming more common as people are representing their faith through permanent ink. I think it’s beautiful, but I’m a bit biased.
Tattoos have been around forever. Dating back to thousands of years before Christ, people preserved bodies being discovered with body art. People would mark their bodies in celebration of God, making their bodies a walking testimony for their faith. Is it wrong to be a witness and testimony of faith in God?
Leviticus 19:26-31 mentions tattoos, and is usually where most Christians against body art get their argument. But after reading carefully, this passage is referring to a pagan funeral ritual where the pagans would mark their bodies to appeal to their false gods in order to gain favor.
God is warning the Jews not to follow the pagans in their worshipping of false gods. Christians today aren’t getting tattoos in order to worship false gods; they are getting tattoos and worshipping one God. According to 1 Corinthians 6, we should treat our bodies like a temple, but the entire passage that phrase is in pertains to sexual immorality, not body art.
We see a person marking his body for God in Isaiah 44 and 49, and again in Galatians 6:17 and Revelation 19:16. All throughout the Bible we see people painting themselves in honor of God and their faith. This leads me to believe that it’s not wrong.
Years ago I met a guy at work whose faith was astounding. He had the Christian fish tattooed on the inside of his wrist, and one day I asked him about it.
Long ago, when Christians were being persecuted, they would draw an arch in the sand with your foot when they first met someone. If the other person were a Christian, he or she would also draw an arch in the sand starting at the tip of one end going through the first arch, making the fish symbol.
My friend is a missionary, and he has traveled to some really risky places for Christians to go. Now, people have started putting tattoos on the inside of their wrists to identify that they are Christian instead of drawing a fish in the sand. When you shake a person’s hand, you can see that he or she is a Christian and can be trusted. He got this tattoo on one of his first mission trips to symbolize his faith.
We’ve seen the t-shirts, the bumper stickers and other things advertising a person’s faith. Christian body art is another thing to add to the list. It’s another way to identify a fellow brother or sister in Christ. They didn’t get that cross put on their body just because it looked cool, but as a symbol to show the rest of the world their faith.
Deciding to get a tattoo is ultimately a personal decision, and it should stay that way. And the motives for getting one should remain pure, not out of spite or rebellion. But, regardless of a person’s motives for choosing to get ‘inked,’ it is not anyone else’s place to judge that person.
Alisha Carranza is a junior English major from Rowlett.