Expressing faith with tattoos isn’t a modern practice. Tattoos were used as amulets for protection, health and other reasons for thousands of years. That’s why you won’t see Christian themed tattoos only. You’ll see various depictions of Buddha, the om symbol and so on. On your spiritual journey through life, you might feel the need to mark certain points, so that’s why these 80+ ideas for a religious tattoo will come at hand.
Some Christians are still wondering if tattooing is a sin. To answer their concern, I have to say that the Bible mentions it is not. As long as you ink yourself with no bad reason or the intention to hurt others, you’ll be safe. The only way inking is not good is when it is inflicted upon others without their consent and no pure intentions.
Most religious designs are in black and white, but you’ll also gaze upon a few colored masterpieces. Even if these types of tattoos are symbolic, this doesn’t mean that they cannot look good as well. Realism and minimalism are styles that you’ll recognize while browsing through the following examples. Approximately 25% of all tattooed Americans sport a religious tattoo.
1. Half sleeve of Virgin Mary
Both Christianity and Islamism adorn Virgin Mary. This religious tattoo is pretty standard, consisting of her face, praying hands, wings and roses.
2. Impressive back piece of Noah’s work
The dove and the other elements present in this impressive back piece are Christian symbols and refer to happenings from the Bible. He must be a true believer with a keen eye for art.
3. The portrait of Virgin Mary
A delicate outline of Virgin Mary, this tattoo is more symbolic than a visual treat.
4. You armed me with strength for battle
…you humbled my adversaries before me. This is a quotation of Psalm 18:39. Accompanied by a 3D cross, this tattoo is empowering.
5. An archangel in action
A beautiful drawing of an archangel, this religious tattoo is appealing thanks to its technique and shading. It is meaningful too.
6. Staving off the devil
One of the rosary’s purpose is to stave off the devil.
7. Impossible to separate
A cross filled with lettering and cracked skin represents a common religious design. The quotation comes from Romans 8:38-39 and speaks of the impossibility of being separated from God.
8. Only God can judge me
A cursive and ornamental lettering is associated with wings and the name of what could be this man’s children.
9. Virgin Mary and her infinite love
A naive portrait of Virgin Mary stands as a spiritual arm piece.
10. A rudimentary portrait of Jesus
Jesus’s face while wearing the crown of thorns is also common in the world of religious tattoo. This portrait is rudimentary, but honest.
11. The Guardian Angels
Faith in Guardian Angels is the one that gets some people through the day. This tattoo is a tribute to them.
12. Outstanding realistic dove
Doves mean hope and much more when they are tattooed so beautifully. On a black background, this bird looks almost divine.
13. Dove, cross and a teaching
Bringing three profoundly meaningful religious symbols together is an inspiration for tattoo lovers.
14. Strength and virtue
The face of Virgin Mary also symbolizes strength and virtue.
15. Bust of a holy woman
Many Christians praise Virgin Mary because of how pure and important she was for Christianity.
16. Dove carrying a rosary
There’s is hope in prayer and ways to express that trough the image of a dove that carries a rosary.
17. The stairway to heaven
The idea behind this tattoo is original. It depicts the stairway to heaven and a door surrounded by thorns.
18. Virgin Mary with scary eyes
The eyes of this version of Virgin Mary look a bit scary, don’t you think?
19. The portrait of a praying man
Since this isn’t exactly a typical portrait, I can’t tell who this man is. He is definitely praying, so that’s inspiring.
20. Gorgeous purity in colors
Probably the most gorgeous portrait of Virgin Mary, this one captures her purity, as well as her beauty. The colors are vibrant and I can tell this isn’t a tattoo made too long ago.
21. Quotation from Proverbs 31:25
A religious tattoo can be motivational as well. This example shows it very well.
22. In the kingdom of heaven
When a religious tattoo isn’t a tribute to God, it can be a tribute to a lost one. In this case it was Sara.
23. Rosary as ankle bracelet
When someone is wearing a rosary, that someone is asking Jesus for protection. I guess a tattoo could replace a real rosary because it has the same power.
24. A modern vision of Virgin Mary
As I was saying, having a keen eye for art doesn’t require less belief. This is a very modern interpretation of Virgin Mary.
25. A divine being watching upon us
A tattoo can also serve as a reminder. When you’re close to losing hope, you can recharge your positive energy by looking at your tattoos.
26. Christ lives in you
Galatians 2:20 refers to Christ living in everyone of us. As a chest tattoo, it looks imposing and empowering as well.
27. Cross and crown
A playful and styled tattoo, this one consists of a cross and a crown.
28. Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ
Virgin Mary was the mother of Jesus Christ and they all contributed to the salvation of the mankind. Getting chest tattoos of them is a sort of thank you.
29. A peek of Virgin Mary praying
The meaning of the rose from this tattoo regards the blood of the slain.
30. Peaceful Buddha tattoo idea
Buddha is all about compassion and realistic portraiture also flatters him.
31. Black and white Buddha portrait
The tattoo artist who inked this managed to express Buddha’s wisdom and power.
32. Tiny cross on wrist
A minimalist tattoo, the sign of cross is a universal symbol found in the Egyptian, Celtic and Christian communities.
33. Realistic hands holding a rosary
While this design isn’t original, the fact that these are a man’s hands holding a rosary is.
34. Angel wings and cross tattoo
Angel wings tattoos are a separate category, but they are connected to religious tattoos because they also refer to faith, hope and salvation.
35. A very profound combo
Most tattoos part of the spiritual category consist in one leitmotif. The latter refers to a central piece. However, this one has three points of interest. The technique is especially vaporous.
36. An angel of death
The skull gazing upon the angel makes me think of the Angel of Death. This is not a very positive side of spiritual tattoos, but it’s definitely part of it.
37. May the Lord and angels watch over you
Jesus’s sacrifice is hope for humanity. The clouds and the Kingdom of heaven are included in this composition.
38. The Holy Trinity is love
An intelligent combination, this line tattoo speaks of God’s love.
39. Tribal tattoo with red cross
Masterfully taking the shape of wings, the tribal linings merge nicely with the red cross.
40. A sturdy masculine cross
A religious tattoo situated on the forearm is a statement.
41. Big chest cross filled with black
Placed above the physical heart, this big cross represents faith and love for God.
42. Ornamental cross as chest piece
Simple or not, the cross stands for love, power and grace.
43. In loving memory of…
A tattoo comprising a cross and the name of the lost one is a beautiful tribute.
44. An anatomically correct sacrifice
Everything about this tat is detailed, including the wood’s texture. Jesus’ body is an aesthetic marvel as well.
45. A simple cross for humbleness
Some individuals don’t need complexity to express their faith.
46. Commitment to Ganesha
Simply drawn, this tattoo represents commitment to Ganesha, the god of beginnings.
47. A symbolical composition
True ink enthusiasts and religious people opt for huge pieces that encompass numerous symbols.
48. Virgin Mary is hope
If a virgin human being can mean so much for the human race, then she is hope.
49. Buddha’s unlimited wisdom and peace
The chosen elements from this composition send a message of peace and wisdom, encouraging us to meditate.
50. The om symbol
Om is representative for Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism.
51. Good fortune, luck and well-being
Swastika is older than Hitler, so don’t associate it. It stands for good fortune, luck and well-being. That’s why it is tattooed on the portrait of Buddha.
52. The purity of angels
Not a very realistic tattoo, this one speaks of the purity of angels.
53. May God watch upon lost ones
Until we end up in heaven, we have to live mourning for the lost ones. This is an expression of mourning.
54. Virgin Mary in her holiness
Conceived more detailed than usual, the body of Virgin Mary lies on a woman’s forearm.
55. God as people see it
A hyper-realistic tat, this could be how people see God.
56. A traditional vision of Jesus
The technique used for this tat is traditional although it lacks colors.
57. Om circled in tribal designs
Typical masculine shapes, tribal tattoos go hand in hand with the Indian om symbol.
58. Realism applied on Jesus Christ
While we don’t have a picture of Jesus, this is how we see him.
59. Separate Christian symbols on chest
I have a feeling all these tattoos will become a full-chest piece.
60. Rays of hope behind the cross
Thanks to gray tones and highlights, it looks like rays shine behind the cross.
61. Color for deity
Even if seeing a colored religious tattoo isn’t a treat that we stumble upon very often, we should appreciate it when we do.
62. Virgin Mary’s bloody tears
The impact of red color is high in case of black and white tattoos.
63. Ring of rosary
A miniature rosary can make a wonderful ring to wear permanently.
64. Inventive composition for Leanne and Mark
The person who got this tat seems young, so Leanne and Mark could be his parents.
65. A cross with Celtic motifs
The symbol of the cross adorned with Celtic embellishments.
66. Minimalist cross behind the ear
Regardless of its size, a cross tattoo means the same thing.
67. A sleeve dedicated to hope
Not a very good tattoo visually speaking, this one is about hope.
68. Virgin Mary praying on man’s arm
Virgin Mary usually looks down when praying, but here she looks up.
69. Realistic design of Virgin Mary praying
This tat was superbly inked. The technique is realistic with emphasis on face.
70. Christianity on one arm
If you gather the most important Christian symbols, you come up with something like this.
71. In loving memory of Don Jesus
Coping with loss may mean getting a tattoo.
72. A complex sleeve about faith
Copying the renaissance style, this sleeve is dedicated to faith.
73. Jesus Christ crucified
The crucifixion of Jesus Christ is an important moment in history.
74. Rosary as cool bracelet
Effective and cool-looking, this is a bracelet tat of a rosary.
75. Ankle bracelet from a rosary
Now she can have the rosary always with her.
76. Cross on the nape of the neck
A more of less hidden tattoo, this cross fits nicely on the nape of the neck.
77. Cross with tribal background
The tribal background has no religious significance, but looks good though.
78. A wrist tattoo of a cross
Just a reminder of how tiny crosses look like.
79. Roses and the mother of Jesus
Roses are almost always part of a Virgin Mary tattoo.
80. When Jesus was a baby
This is Virgin Mary caring for her baby, Jesus Christ.
81. Dark and realistic portrait
For some reason, happy colors aren’t associated with religion.
82. A different portrait drawing manner
Do you like a certain drawing style? You can get any design drawing the way you like.
83. A less successful icon
The way this tattoo was inked reminds me of the paintings from churches.
84. Green cross on orange background
After looking at so many black and white tattoos, I find this out of place. The cross is green and the background is orange, which makes no sense because these two colors aren’t exactly compatible. It is a religious tattoo nevertheless, with or without vibrant colors to make it stand out better.