Summary: Many pastors preach against tattoos, too bad they didn't tell God. He has tattoos on His hands!
God Has Tattoos!
A. In the Book of Isaiah 49:16-17, we read that Israel was in a time of great trouble. God was judging them for their rebellion and sin. The Babylonians had come in and destroyed their country and carried many away captive. The people were crying out, "Where is God in all of this? Has He forgotten us?"
B. What was God's answer? “I have not for¬gotten you, how could I? Why I even have a tattoo of you on the palm of my hands!” "Behold, I have graven (inscribed) thee upon the palms of my hands..."
C. The word "graven" does NOT mean carved like a graven image. The Hebrew word is “kawkak” which means to write, or to print. It is the same word used for, “It is graven upon the table of their heart,” in Jer 17:1 and Ex 32:16.
D. The other word for graven used in the Bible is “pacal” which means to CARVE, like graven image or carved image. This is not the word that is used in Isaiah 49:16.
Why does He have tattoos on His hands?
A. God has tattoos of us on His hands so that He can see them often. It is not like when people get tattoos on their arms or places where they can't see them. God wants to see these tattoos everyday.
B. He likes to look at reminders of us just like we may like to look at pictures of our loved ones. Some wives and husbands carry pictures of their spouses and chil¬dren in their wallets. Many of us have pictures of our family on our walls. They serve as reminders of people we love. Pictures make us feel good when we look at them.
C. In the Book, Song of Solomon 8:6, the Shulamite woman, who is a type of God's people, cries out to her lover, who is a type of God, "Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal or a mark upon your arm." A seal means a mark made with a pen or a ring. She was crying out, “I want to be a permanent part of your life.” God, by tattooing us on the palms of His hands, is telling us, we are a per¬manent part of His life.
D. God asks in Isaiah 49:15 "Can a woman forget her child?" It is not likely that she could. A mother cannot but have compassion on her own child, yet as hard as it may sound, even a mother can forget her child. But God will never forget us. His compassion for us infinitely exceeds that of mothers towards their children.
E. It is a comfort to know that God has put a tattoo of us on His hands as a picture before Him so that He is continually conscious of each one of us. It is a comfort to know that we are the objects of His love and care and that He is thinking about us every moment.
F. "Many are your thoughts towards us, so much so that they cannot be numbered." Psalm 40:5
G. In an earlier chapter, 44:21-22, God says that He will never forget us, "You will not be forgotten by Me, I have blotted out your sins." God will forget our sins but He will never forget us!
What do these tattoos look like?
A. Isaiah 49:16 tells us what these tattoos look like. "Your walls are con¬tinually before me"
B. What does He mean by "walls?" Your walls can be the blueprints of your life. “The walls and plans that I have for you are continually before me. This is how I see you.”
C. “Your walls, the walls of Jerusalem, are al¬ways before me.” Even though Jerusalem’s walls had been torn down, God says He still sees them before His eyes. The plan for the nation still remained in God's sight, even though the Babylonians had thor¬oughly destroyed it. “I see what is going on in your life, but I am not set back by this, your time will come.”
D. Worldly tattoos or worldly pictures remind of us the past. God's tattoos speak of the future or the eternal present. The God who calls Himself the "I AM" is ever in the present.
E. Another difference between worldly tattoos and pictures and God's tattoos is that worldly tattoos fade and become blurred as time goes on, but God's tattoos be¬come more focused and clearer as time goes on.
F. It is important to realize that God calls us as He sees us, not as we see ourselves. When God visited Gideon He called him, "Oh mighty man of God." Gideon was anything but a mighty man of God. He was hiding from the Midianites and just trying to get a little food, figuring if he didn't bother them maybe they would leave him alone.