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josie's avatar

Did Jesus have a tattoo?

Asked by josie (28695points) January 6th, 2011

Human beings have been decorating their skin with tattoos or scars since before they even knew that they were human beings. Did Jews or the Romans in the eastern Mediterranian region tattoo themselves 2000 years ago? What is the likelihood that Jesus had a tattoo?

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18 Answers

jlelandg's avatar

YES…no…err YES!

Foxtrot's avatar

Leviticus has a verse about not getting tattoos if I remember correctly, so I’d assume Jesus wouldn’t have had a tattoo. Assuming he listened to the book.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@Foxtrot The verse you are thinking of is Leviticus 19:28. “You shall not make any cuts in your body for the dead nor make any tattoo marks on yourselves: I am the LORD” (New American Standard Bible).

Note that the prohibition is generally held only to apply to voluntary, permanent tattooing.

josie's avatar

So I figure nobody in the NFL or the NBA has read it either…
I know I never read it.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@josie People ignore most of the prohibitions in Leviticus until they have a political movement to support. Also, many Christians believe that those laws do not apply anymore (or at least do not apply to those who are not of Jewish descent). This is a matter of some debate among Christian groups, but there is an unfortunate dearth of people who are both professional athletes and religious scholars.

Foxtrot's avatar

I haven’t read the bible in about 10 years. Though, I do remember how insane Leviticus is.
Edit because I @ mentioned myself.

downtide's avatar

It annoys me sometimes, how some Christians pick and choose to suit themselves. They’ll happily ignore the rule about tattooing themselves or eating shrimp, but then the one about homosexuality is the most evil thing ever just because the Bible says so.

ucme's avatar

More than likely had a “tramp stamp” on his arse cheeks. Oh & Insert nails here on the palm of each hand.

ratboy's avatar

He had “DAD” on his deltoid.

filmfann's avatar

@Foxtrot has the correct answer.
Before being crucified, Jesus was a model Jew, so he didn’t have tattoos.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

I thought he was heavily into piercings.

john65pennington's avatar

How could anyone possibly have the answer to this question?

Ron_C's avatar

I think that the early Jewish people were against marking their bodies, mostly because a lot of gentiles did. If Jesus existed, it is likely that he was unmarked, at least until the Romans got ahold of him.

incendiary_dan's avatar

Considering that the historical Jesus was probably such a holy guy by following the Jewish scripture, he probably wouldn’t have violated Leviticus by getting some ink.

Life28SBK's avatar

If you read a verse in relevlations 19:16 it tells you plain as day that Jesus had a tattoo (writing) on his thigh that said “King Of Kings & Lord Of Lords”

Ron_C's avatar

Revelations was written by a guy spaced out on magic mushrooms or some early for of crack. I doubt that anything in that book of the bible is believable. Regardless, the writer is talking about the returned Christ, not be Christ that was previously written about.

SavoirFaire's avatar

Regardless of what we think of Revelations or its author, the verse in question only tells us that the incarnation of Christ described has the name “KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS” written on his thigh. There is no indication that it is a tattoo, as opposed to an intelligently designed bit of skin pigmentation.

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