God told Israel in Leviticus 19:28, “You shall not make any cuts on your body for the dead or tattoo yourselves: I am the LORD.” Christians are not under the Law Covenant. Therefore, its commands are not binding for Christians. Yet, it may be important to consider why God may have issued a law or what might be the reasoning behind an ordinance.
When God created mankind in Genesis 1, He pronounced His creation as “very good”. (See Genesis 1:31.) Man’s skin was beautiful and perfect. When people choose to receive a tattoo, they are marring God’s work. The only scripturally sanctioned cutting of flesh was circumcision. “You shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskins, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and you.” (Genesis 17:12) Circumcision was an outward testimony that an Israelite man had entered into the Law Covenant with God. This was an important and holy witness.
Some may similarly think a religious tattoo could be a witness. However, Jesus said the world will know Christians by their love. “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you,…by this shall all men know that ye are my disciples” John 13:34, 35. Additionally, as we develop the fruits of the spirit (love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance, Galatians 5:22, 23), our characters will testify to our walk with God. Therefore, we believe it is reasonable to think that any tattoo is not in accordance with God’s arrangements. However, because we do not have a specific scripture in the New Testament, we are merely offering our opinion.