Pastor Joyce Meyer recently joked she's has been toying with the idea of getting a tattoo. In a recent conference, she told an audience that she might get inked just to rile up the religious people who believe that a tattoo is against the Bible.
In a video clip from the Joyce Meyer Ministries, the pastor explained during a conference on March 14 that living in holiness is not about being bounded by legalism. The latter, she explained, dictated certain prohibitions, rules and regulations -- such as not wearing makeup, not going to parties, not dressing up in pretty dresses and not getting tattoos -- that religious people established in the name of holiness.
In 2014, Pastor Pat Roberston cited Leviticus 19:28 to discourage Christians from getting tattoos and described this as a "heathen practice." Meyer, however, disagreed with this statement and maintained that even God has a tattoo and cited Isaiah 49:16.
"The Bible says in Isaiah 49 that God has a picture of you tattooed on the palm of His hand," Meyer said, adding that she just might get a tattoo that says "I belong to the Lord" on the back of her shoulder.
"I'm right on the verge of going and getting a tattoo," she said. "I thought I might as well just push all the religious people right off the cliff and just get it over with."
She added: "Why would I do that? Just to make religious demons mad, no other reason."
Meyer's statement received cheers from the audience. She further explained that legalism could take the fun out of serving Jesus and suggested this could be why some Christians are uptight and miserable. The pastor insisted legalism turns people off from going to church for fear of being judged and criticized. She ended by encouraging Christians to pursue holiness and work on their faith, but emphasized that this should not be at the expense of living miserably because of certain rules imposed by people.
Getting a tattoo usually triggers a debate among Christians because some believe it's a sin based on the Bible. Last year, Pastor Carl Lentz of Hillsong New York City defended himself from criticisms after he got a tattoo. He also brought up the Leviticus verse and challenged its interpretations.
"We don't believe that when Jesus died and rose again that old Levitical scripture applied to our modern life," Lentz said. "That is ridiculous," he added.