Tattoos have become mainstream in the United States. We have around 145 million Americans who have tattoos.  Nearly 50 percent of millennials (25 and 40 years old) have tattoos.  Even Evangelical pastors are getting them.  And one sign that tattoos have become a fixture in our culture is when toy companies start making Barbie dolls with elaborate tattoos:
New fashion standards are being set for our kids with pink-haired Barbie dolls that come with short skirts, leopard prints and a tattoo canvas covering Barbie’s back, neck, chest and shoulder. 
Or you can get the purple haired Barbie doll with bizarre clothes and intricate tattoos all across her arms and chest.  If you don’t think this will inspire young girls to want to permanently scar their bodies with tattoos, then you don’t know the power of marketing. By holding something day after day, we change into that image.
“But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” 2 Corinthians 3:18.
We replicate in life the things we see over and over again. Either we are being transformed into the image of Christ by beholding His righteousness, or we are being molded in the image of our corrupt culture with its tattoos, body piercings, colored hair and bizarre fashions.
Which brings us to the purpose of this article. Above, you will see the front cover of the most recent issue of the Pacific Union Recorder, February 2021 edition. This is the official publication of the Pacific Union Conference of Seventh-day Adventists and is shipped to 76,000 households in Arizona, Nevada, California, Hawaii and Utah.
Wherever you go and everywhere you turn in society, you will see tattoos and other forms of body art, including the front cover of our Seventh-day Adventist publications. On the cover of the Pacific Union Recorder you will see Adventist Health employees.  One is administering what is presumed to be the Covid-19 vaccine to another Adventist Health employee. Both carry the Adventist Health name on their uniforms.
It is impossible not to notice the tattoos. You don’t even have to look for them, they are there staring at you on the cover. Could the Pacific Union Recorder have chosen a different cover photo? Of course they could have. Maybe this was just an oversight, or maybe our publications are no longer conservative.
“Ye shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor print any marks upon you: I am the LORD.” Leviticus 19:28.
“For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” 1 Corinthians 6:20.
Is this an attempt on the part of the Pacific Union Recorder to erase the negative stereotypes about tattoos? Are we trying to legitimize something that God’s word will not sanctify? And are we trying to change our attitudes and preconceived ideas about tattoos? If the answer is no, then the church has a duty not to sanction the popular cultural phenomenon of tattoos. What message are we sending to Seventh-day Adventist youth throughout the Pacific Union Conference and beyond?
But if this is in fact a sign that we are now becoming more accepting, more accommodating and more affirming to tattoos and other worldly trends, then we wonder, what will be next. Body piercings? Ear lobe stretching? Tongue splitting? Body modifications? Dyed hair? Bizarre fashions?
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” Romans 12:1.
“Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.” 1 Corinthians 3:16, 17.