God Invented Tattoo's
I know that may shake some people's thinking, but let's look at what the Bible says. In order, we'll look at God's use of tattoo's, how the devil uses them, how cultures used/will use them, and then a conclusion - so read on!
The first tattoo mentioned is in Genesis 4:15: "And the Lord said to him; 'Therefore whoever kills Cain, vengeance will be taken on him sevenfold. And the Lord set a mark on Cain, lest any finding him should kill him."
I've heard pastors teach ridiculous things about what that mark was - everything from the Lord turned him into a black African, to Cain became a homosexual. Of course neither of those are correct. It was a 'mark' on his person, a sign on his flesh marking the fact God had dealt with Cain about the murder of Abel and everyone else was to leave him alone.
Ezekiel and the Tattoo
Ezekiel's eyes are opened to the Spirit realm and he sees an angel standing before the Lord, ready to judge between those who truly know and serve the Lord, and those who do not:
"...and one clothed in linen (the angel) with a writer's inkhorn by his side. And the Lord said to him; 'Go through the midst of the city (Jerusalem) and set a mark on the foreheads of the men that sigh and cry for all the abominations that are done in the midst of it....don't touch any who have the mark..." Ez 9:1-6
What is interesting is that this ancient Hebrew word 'mark', 'tav' (tawv) was written as a + or x in Ezekiel's time. So the Lord was having his angel write a cross or x on the foreheads of His people. Because this was a vision Ezekiel was having, unlike Cain's mark, these tattoos were applied in the Spirit, not physically.
The Lord's Personal Tattoo
"Don't hurt the earth, nor the sea, nor the trees, until we have sealed the servants of God in their foreheads."
"And there were 144,000, having His Father's name written in their foreheads."
"And they shall see His face, and His name shall be in their foreheads." Revelation 7:3,14:1, 22:4
God's Purpose for a Tattoo
We can see from these examples that God uses tattoos as a means to designate people who belong to Him. From Cain to Ezekiel to a future time of Tribulation on the earth, God uses tattoos in Spirit or in the flesh to show (His) ownership, purpose, and the eternal destiny of that person.
Of Course the Devil Perverts Anything that God Invented
By the time Israel enters the promised land, the various religions of the area used tattoos and cutting themselves as part of their worship of demons and their ancestors. That is why Leviticus 19:28 says: "You shall not make any cuttings in your flesh (for the dead), nor print any marks on you: I AM (the Lord)."
If you have listened to my series 'The Jezebel Spirit' you'll remember how they danced around poles (shaped as phallic symbols) naked, and enticed men and women to sexual acts as they worshipped and conducted business deals, praying to the demon that their business deals, crops, and animals would be fertile and produce well. In many religions cutting themselves and/or tattoos were involved as well. (Another reference would be Elijah's experience with the prophets of Baal in I Kings 18:28)
Enter the Roman Empire
When Rome took slaves they took away that person's name and gave them a number instead. They would tattoo that number on the person's forehead or wrist, indicating this slave's thoughts (forehead) are now for Rome, and/or their actions (wrist) are now for Rome alone. You may recall the movie "Ben Hur", when he is a rower on a Roman ship and renamed 'number 41' as his new identity.
One of my favorite passages is Romans 16:22-23: "I, Tertius, who wrote this letter, greet you in the Lord. Gaius my host and the whole church, greets you. Erastus, the treasurer of the city greets you, and Quartus, a brother."
Paul dictated most of his letters, and Tertius was the one receiving dictation from Paul there in Corinth, thus he was the one who did the actual writing of the book we call 'Romans'.
The name 'Tertius' is the Roman numeral 3, and 'Quartus' is the Roman numeral 4. These two slaves, were equal in Christ with the great apostle and the Treasurer of the city of Corinth, which had a population of over 75,000.
Revelation 13: 16-18 tells us there will come what a basically a revived Roman Empire with an economic system where everyone will be 'owned' by the system, and marked in their forehead or wrist accordingly if they want to buy or sell anything.
I think it would be safe to say that you and I spiritually speaking, have God's mark and/or name in our foreheads and wrist - the forehead representing thoughts, and the wrist representing actions - thus our thoughts and lives are for God.
As far as we know, Jesus is the only One who throughout eternity will have a glorified body with earthly scars from the marks received on the cross. He is 'tattooed' if you will, with those marks for eternity. Our brothers Tertius and Quartus are now free from their Roman slave tattoos.
So a person needs to consider the spirit behind the reason for their tattoo. A tattoo in itself isn't evil. There are many motives for getting tattoos, ranging from being 'cool' on the one hand, or like an accessory decoration on the body as jewelry might be used, to using tattoos to intimidate people because the person has a poor self image so they use tattoos to project a false persona - and that's where cutting and self-mutilation enters in as well.
Something else to consider is what actress Megan Fox recently revealed on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, that she is now having her tattoos removed that she got when she was 18. She said when she was 18 she thought she knew what she wanted and the idea those would be there forever didn't really matter. Then she grew up and her outlook changed. She turns the ripe old age of 26 this May...my how outlooks change!
So those two things - the motivation behind the getting of a tattoo, and the permanence. Those are some thoughts this week...next week, gambling.
God Invented Tattoo's