Sometimes, it will be hard to find the perfect tattoo with perfect meaning. Every person that loves tattoos probably wants something that will have profound meaning and symbolism. However, there are tattoos which are abundant in meaning, but after 5, 10, 15, or even 50 years, their meaning is not that important. Over time, tattoos have lost much of their meanings, and a lot of people consider them a form of art. However, it is still possible to get a tattoo that you will regret. That’s why you have to be really careful and make sure that you choose the right design. Tattoos related to religion are really common these days. Religious tattoos play an important role in various religions in the world. Although some religions permit tattoos, others prohibit them. The followers of the Christian religion often get tattoos which find their association with Jesus Christ and his living and teaching.
Here, we will present you the 6 Christian tattoos you cannot go wrong with:
The scene of the crucifixion of Christ is a popular theme in Christian tattoo iconography, rendered in numerous different ways. For some people, it may be as simple as three small Latin crosses on an inverted crescent. However, for others, it is a large portrait-style image, replete with Roman soldiers, bleak landscapes, and dark foreboding clouds.
Still, another type is one which capitalizes on the name of the site of the crucifixion, Golgotha. Aramaic for the word “skull,” Golgotha is a skull-shaped hill, outside the city walls of Jerusalem. In allegorically, as well as symbolically laden images, some tattoos place the three crosses atop a skull. In these ways, they combine the two popular images in tattoo art.
- Holy Trinity
The number three is a sacred or divine number in most of the cultures around the world. In the Christian imagery, the three intersecting circles which form an equilateral triangle are the symbol of the Holy Trinity.
The Christian doctrine of the Holy Trinity holds that God is one God. However, three coeternal consubstantial persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, are one God in three Divine Persons. The three persons are distinct, still are one substance, essence, or nature. The Holy Trinity’s symbol is common in tattoo art, especially among people who have a close relationship with religious matters.
In more recent times, the letters “IHS” served as the acronym for different words relating to Christ. For example, they mean “I Have Survived,” in English, “Jesus Hominum Salvator,” in Latin, meaning “Jesus, the Savior of Men. Other meanings are “Jesus, Heiland, Seligmacher,” in German, which means “Jesus, Lord, Savior.”
However, the origin of the letters is not of an acronym at all, but an abbreviation. Christian symbolism used “IHC” as the abbreviation of Jesus’ name, based upon the spelling of Jesus using the Greek alphabet. When translated to Latin equivalents, the first three letters iota, eta, and sigma, would appear I, H, C. Sometimes, their translation was I, H, S, where the letter “S” instead of “C” replaces sigma.
- Holy Lamb
The theme of portraying Christ as a lamb is another popular one in Christian art and Coptic tattoo work. In the Old Testament, as elsewhere in the world, people offered lambs in sacrifice as atonement for sin. However, in the New Testament, Jesus replaces the lamb. John the Baptist says of him, “Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world.”
The lamb is even the reflection of the gentle nature of Jesus Christ. The Holy Lamb tattoo generally shows a haloed lamb, and staff flying a banner of white cloth with a red cross sometimes accompanied it. This hearkens back to the crucifixion.
- Good Shepherd
Coptic and Christian tattoo images alike, touch upon a lot of different aspects of Christianity. This includes the image of Christ as the good shepherd to which he himself alluded.
In tattoo artwork, or otherwise, this image frequently takes the form of Jesus carrying a lamb or a shepherd’s staff. In these images, it is caring and compassion that this tattoo primarily symbolizes.
Each of the gospels of the New Testament has its associated symbol, based on the evangelist who wrote it. The vision of the Old Testament prophet Ezekiel also influences each symbol. He saw four creatures supporting the throne of God.
The symbol of Matthew is a winged man since his gospel emphasizes the humanity of Christ. The symbol of Mark is the winged lion because his gospel stresses miracles and power. The symbol of Luke is the winged ox, as his gospel makes many references to the sacrificial death of Christ. And, the symbol of John is the eagle, as his gospel emphasizes the deity of Christ.
The Christian world has a love-hate relationship with tattoos for centuries. However, the number of tattoos based on this religion is huge. Remember to think twice before you choose your tattoo design, as you may regret it later.