I’ve just completed reading your article on tattooing and the truth of it all deeply troubled me. I am a Christian, and like most I’ve back-slidden several times throughout my life. During one of these times, I received two tattoos. One is a “tribal” band on my left arm, though it doesn’t fully circle the whole upper-arm. The other is on my right shoulder, the letters “MSC” in cursive writing signifying the names of my best friend, his wife, and their little daughter. Even though I love my friend and his family, I deeply regret getting their initials tattooed onto my body. Moreover, I seriously and gravely regret with all my heart getting my other tattoo (the tribal band on my left arm). Being a few years older now (29 and married) there is not a day that goes by that I don’t regret getting these tattoos. When I dress, I’m forced to see them in the mirror. When I shower I’m forced to see them. What makes matters worse, is that I knew all along that it is was wrong. I justified it with a back-slidden mind by thinking such things as “God only considers the heart and mind”, “physical sins don’t compare to spiritual sins”, and so on, and so on. With my depraved and back-slidden mind, I justified an abomination to God Himself, who instructs us through His divine law not to print any marks on our bodies (Leviticus 19:28). If this is the law that will be used to rightly judge the world, how much more should we as Christians observe and uphold it? The woman doing my first tattoo (the tribal band) had to stop several times for mysterious reasons. She was visibly shaken and could not concentrate. She kept saying, “man, I need a break.” Though It wasn’t for my sake, I hid the pain very well and tuned it out for the most part–but this woman could not wait to get me out of that chair. She claimed that she drank quite a bit the night before (I was getting the tattoo on a Saturday afternoon), and this seemed to be the most logical reason that she was having such a tough time. I can’t help but wonder, however, if there was more to it. Even then my diminished discernment was working, and I sensed a spiritual conflict taking place. When the woman had finished, she made a disturbing remark that will forever echo in mind, “there ya go, you’re no longer a virgin.” Of course, she spoke not of physical sexuality, but of spiritual defilement against God in the form of marking my flesh. Now I was “one of the gang”, one of the “cool people”, and one of the rebels who shakes their fist at the law of God. I’m still troubled, even knowing that I’m forgiven. My only hope is for the glorification of the body, when the Lord shall raise us incorruptible. My tattoos stand as constant reminders of my past depravity when I forsook truly walking with God, and only rendered Him lip-service. They will continue to be my marks of shame for the rest of the time appointed. Thank you for your article. Hopefully this message will get out and all the right people will hear it, and save them from the fate of my shame and regret. It would bring great solace to know that another person would read your article and avert my mistakes–which I would take back in a second if only I had the chance. Through my own research, I’ve drawn all the same conclusions you have concerning tattooing, body modification, and other self-destructive practices. May the Lord bless you and grant you peace and understanding,
If you haven’t any tattoos, great. Keep your skin clean. If you already have tattoos, know that the Father loves all His children and is willing to forgive all indiscretions. Remember that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit — the Spirit of God that lives in you. Treat your body like the temple that it is.
Forearm tattoo written in French: “I do not regret anything” – Image per User: Leets Tattoo, flickr