What Does the New Testament Bible Say About Tattoos? You Won’t Believe These Insights

Tattoos have become a popular form of self-expression, but you might wonder what the New Testament Bible says about them. While the Old Testament has clear guidelines, the New Testament offers a different perspective that many find intriguing.

What Does the New Testament Bible Say About Tattoos? You Won’t Believe These Insights

If you’re curious about how your faith intersects with body art, you’re not alone. Let’s explore what the New Testament says about tattoos and how it can guide your choices.

Exploring Tattoo References in the New Testament

The New Testament doesn’t provide clear directives on tattoos. However, understanding its texts can help guide your decisions.

Understanding Context and Translation

Early Christians didn’t focus on tattoos since they adhered to Jewish customs, which cautioned against them. The Greek words used in the New Testament don’t directly reference tattoos, meaning translation nuances can play a role.

Key Verses and Their Interpretations

Romans 12:1-2 emphasizes offering your body as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God, rather than conforming to the world. Also, 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 reminds you that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, encouraging you to honor God with your body.

Theological Perspectives on Tattoos

The New Testament doesn’t explicitly address tattoos, leaving room for interpretation. Different denominations and leaders offer varied perspectives on this topic.

Views from Different Christian Denominations

Different Christian denominations approach tattoos in unique ways. Some, like Catholic and Orthodox Christians, might focus on the body as a temple. They often reference 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 and stress honoring God with one’s body. Others, like many Protestant groups, may emphasize personal conviction and the heart behind the decision rather than the act itself.

Modern Christian Leaders on Tattoos

Modern Christian leaders offer varied opinions on tattoos. Some pastors, like Craig Groeschel or Steven Furtick, advocate for careful consideration of motives. They stress that what’s in your heart matters most to God. Leaders like Rick Warren often remind Christians to seek wisdom and ensure that their choices reflect faith and respect for their bodies.

Cultural Impact of Tattoos Among Christians

Historical Views vs. Modern Acceptance

Historically, many Christians avoided tattoos, viewing them as pagan or rebellious. Today, views are more relaxed, with many believers accepting tattoos as personal expressions.

Early Church leaders often warned against altering the body, treating it as a temple of the Holy Spirit. In modern times, this perspective has softened, with many focusing on the intention behind the tattoo instead.

Tattoos as a Form of Expression or Rebellion

Tattoos can be both a form of personal expression and a symbol of rebellion, depending on the context. Some Christians use tattoos to express their faith or share their testimony.

For others, tattoos symbolize a break from traditional values or past experiences. It’s essential to consider your motives and seek wisdom from trusted Christian mentors when contemplating a tattoo.

Legal and Ethical Considerations in Christianity

In Christianity, certain legal and ethical considerations surround the topic of tattoos. Let’s delve into what the New Testament and theological discussions say about this.

Biblical Laws and Modern Interpretations

The Old Testament mentions tattoos in Leviticus 19:28, telling Israelites not to mark their bodies. The New Testament doesn’t repeat this command. Instead, it focuses on living a holy life and honoring God with your body.

Modern Christian interpretations vary. Some see tattoos as personal expressions while others view them as inconsistent with honoring God. It’s crucial to align your actions with biblical teachings.

Ethical Discussions Among Theologians

Theologians often debate the morality of tattoos. Some argue tattoos can be a way to witness faith, sharing Bible verses or Christian symbols.

Others warn against tattoos leading to vanity or rebellion. It’s essential to seek wisdom, pray about your motives, and consult trusted Christian leaders.

Overall, consider how your tattoo choice reflects your faith and aligns with biblical principles.


When thinking about getting a tattoo, it’s essential to consider how it aligns with your faith and biblical principles. The New Testament doesn’t explicitly address tattoos, leaving room for different interpretations among Christians. Seeking wisdom from trusted Christian leaders and reflecting on your motivations can help guide your decision.

Remember that your actions should honor your faith and the teachings you hold dear. Tattoos can be a personal expression, but it’s important to weigh them against your beliefs and the ethical discussions within your community. Ultimately, your choices should resonate with your understanding of biblical teachings and your relationship with God.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does the New Testament say about tattoos?

The New Testament does not explicitly mention or give directives regarding tattoos. Unlike the Old Testament, which has specific guidelines, the New Testament offers broader principles on Christian living that can be interpreted in various ways.

Are tattoos considered a sin in Christianity?

The belief about tattoos being a sin varies among Christians. Some interpret certain biblical principles as discouraging tattoos, while others find no sin in getting them. It’s essential to seek wisdom and guidance from trusted Christian leaders.

How did early Christians view tattoos?

Early Christians had diverse views on tattoos. There is limited historical evidence, but it suggests that early Christian perspectives were influenced by cultural and contextual factors of the time.

What verses in the New Testament are relevant to the discussion on tattoos?

While no verses explicitly address tattoos, passages like 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, which speaks about the body being a temple, are often cited in discussions about the appropriateness of tattoos for Christians.

How should modern Christians approach the topic of tattoos?

Modern Christians are encouraged to reflect on their motivations and how their tattoo choices align with their faith and biblical principles. Consulting with trusted Christian leaders and engaging in personal prayer for guidance is also recommended.

What are the ethical considerations for Christians thinking about getting a tattoo?

Ethical considerations include respecting one’s body as a temple, the potential impact on one’s witness to others, and avoiding content that contradicts Christian values. Reflecting on individual motivations and seeking spiritual counsel is crucial.

Are there legal considerations for Christians getting tattoos?

Legally, Christians must follow the laws and regulations regarding tattoos in their respective regions. Ensuring that the tattoo parlor is compliant with health and safety standards is also important.

Can tattoos be used to express faith?

Yes, many Christians use tattoos to symbolize their faith, such as scripture verses or religious symbols. It’s a personal choice that should align with their beliefs and values.

How do different Christian denominations view tattoos?

Views on tattoos vary widely among Christian denominations. While some denominations may discourage or prohibit tattoos, others may have no specific stance, leaving the decision to individual believers.

What is the importance of seeking guidance before getting a tattoo?

Seeking guidance from trusted Christian leaders and engaging in prayer helps ensure that the decision to get a tattoo is made thoughtfully and aligns with one’s faith and biblical principles.