Saturday, January 28, 2006

Tattoos--what would Jesus do?

This fall I had a meeting with a broker I have known for 15 years. We were meeting to discuss the long-term leasing of a commercial office building. Along with him was an associate, a young woman, with whom I was impressed—smart, knowledgeable, and personable. As she was leaving the office, I noticed a tattoo just above her ankle.

Now old Beef here considers himself to be quite tolerant of other people; as a matter of fact, I rather enjoy free spirits and eccentrics. Immediately, I judged this young lady with the tattoo to be a tramp. Upon further thought, I was amazed how quick I formed a lasting negative opinion.

In his book In, But Not Of by Hugh Hewitt (a practical short book on how to walk the walk) says this about tattoos:

“Fads fade; tattoos don’t. These permanent displays of youthful exuberance trigger at best mild amusement, but in some a serious concern about your maturity.
“Whether or not you believe that concern to be fair, it is real. That tattoo you covet today will be an obstacle in some situations the rest of your life. Do you need it that much? Is it worth compromising your effectiveness?
“This rule of tattoos is easily applied to many other areas of your style of living. Do you do anything to call attention to yourself or to make a statement? If so, is the attention worth it? Most such indulgences are self-defeating, whether it is idiosyncratic hair or clothes, a loud motorcycle, or—later in life—a palatial residence far beyond any ordinary need. The attention you are drawing to yourself is defeating your ambition by marking you as concerned with silly things.
“Serious people do not seek attention except for serious purposes.”

We are not bound today to the code of Leviticus (Leviticus 19:28; Galatians 3:19-25) but in the New Testament we are asked to treat our bodies “as a temple of the Lord” (I Corinthians 6:19-20) So who of us would deface the temple of the Lord? Tattoos? What’s next—coloring our hair, make up, nose piercing, ear piercing, a new beard, etc. This train of thought results in “hyperfingerwagging” (a German word to define the slippery slope of legalism) and we are sliding downhill very fast. Isaiah 58:9 NIV

I wonder sometimes about this “What Would Jesus Do” movement, but I ask the question: Would Jesus have a tattoo???????????

Read Revelations 19:11-16. This reveals the warrior side of Jesus. Notice verse 16. I quote “On His robe and on His thigh He has His name written: King of Kings and Lord of Lords.” God could write that name on His thigh any way He wants—a tattoo??? Maybe, maybe not.

But old Beef, when will you ever learn? So quick to judge, so slow to learn.

1 comment:

Steve Thorson said...

Hey Jerry! Do you look at comments on OLD posts? I started blogging a couple of months ago. Wayne Murphy mentioned a long time ago that he regularly reads yours. I've looked at a couple of your posts but haven't read much. Today I got a note from Mike Lawyer saying that he reads yours so I thought I'd give a look. I have always appreciated your ministry from afar. It's my guess that we see things quite similarly. At least we do as regards tattoos. Some of us get our undies in a bundle over superficialities. On the other hand, tattoos are, in my opinion, often not wise.