Can We Go to Heaven with Tattoos?

Can We Go to Heaven with Tattoos?

Can We Go to Heaven with Tattoos? Tattoos have been a form of self-expression and body modification for centuries, with various meanings and significance depending on the culture and individual. However, within some religious circles, tattoos have been traditionally seen as taboo or sinful. In this article, we will explore the question of whether or not a person with tattoos can go to heaven, specifically within the context of the Bible.

The Old Testament and Tattoos

In the Old Testament, there are a few references to tattoos. One of the most well-known references is in Leviticus 19:28, which states “You shall not make any cuts on your body for the dead or tattoo yourselves: I am the Lord.” This verse is often cited as a prohibition against tattoos, and some interpret it as a commandment from God.

However, it is important to consider the context of this verse within the larger body of scripture. The verse is part of a list of regulations given to the Israelites, many of which deal with ritual purity and worship practices. In this context, the prohibition against tattoos may have been meant to prevent the Israelites from adopting the tattooing practices of the surrounding pagan cultures, which were often associated with idolatry and the worship of false gods.

It is also worth noting that the word “tattoo” in the original Hebrew text is translated as “mark,” and the verse does not specify what type of marks is prohibited. Some biblical scholars believe that the verse may be referring to the practice of cutting or branding the skin as a form of mourning for the dead, rather than tattoos as we understand them today.

Can We Go to Heaven with Tattoos
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The New Testament and Tattoos

The New Testament does not directly address the issue of tattoos. However, it does contain teachings that can provide guidance on the matter.

One key principle to consider is the teaching of Romans 14:7, which states “For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself.” This verse teaches that our lives do not belong to us, but rather to God. This means that our bodies are not our own, and we are called to use them to honor and serve God.

Old Testament and Tattoos
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Another principle to consider is the teaching of 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, which states “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” This verse teaches that our bodies are the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit, and we are called to honor God by caring for our bodies and using them to glorify Him.

Based on these teachings, it could be argued that getting a tattoo may not necessarily be a sin, but it is important to consider the motivation behind the tattoo and whether or not it honors God and reflects a desire to glorify Him.

Tattoos and the Salvation of a Person

Ultimately, the question of whether or not a person with tattoos can go to heaven is not about the tattoos themselves, but rather about the person’s relationship with God.

According to the Bible, the way to obtain salvation and eternal life with God is through faith in Jesus Christ. In John 3:16, it states “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” This verse teaches that salvation is not earned through our own efforts or works, but rather is a gift from God through faith in Jesus.

Therefore, whether or not a person with tattoos can go to heaven is not dependent on their tattoos, but rather on their faith in Jesus as their savior and their willingness to follow Him.

It is important to note that the Bible also teaches that our actions and choices do matter, as they reflect our hearts and our relationship with God. In James 2:17, it states “So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.” This verse teaches that faith should be demonstrated through our actions and the way we live our lives.

Therefore, if a person has tattoos and their motivation for getting them was to honor God and glorify Him, then there is no biblical basis for saying that they cannot go to heaven. However, if a person’s tattoos reflect a rebellious or sinful attitude towards God, or if they are a hindrance to their witness for Christ, then it would be important for that person to consider the impact of their tattoos on their relationship with God and their ability to serve Him.


In conclusion, the Bible does not specifically address the issue of tattoos in a way that would prevent a person with tattoos from going to heaven. Instead, the emphasis is on a person’s relationship with God and their faith in Jesus as their savior. While it is important to consider the motivations behind our actions and choices, including the decision to get a tattoo, ultimately it is our faith in Jesus and our willingness to follow Him that determines our eternal destination.

Reference: Wikipedia & Bible