ChristianAnswers.Net WebBible Encyclopedia
…the flesh in various ways was an idolatrous practice, a part of idol-worship (Deut. 14:1; 1 Kings 18:28)
The Israelites were commanded not to imitate this practice (Lev. 19:28; 21:5; Deut. 14:1).
The tearing of the flesh from grief and anguish of spirit in mourning for the dead was regarded as a mark of affection (Jer. 16:6; 41:5; 48:37).
Allusions are made in Revelation (13:16; 17:5; 19:20) to the practice of printing marks on the body, to indicate allegiance to a deity.
We find also references to it, thrugh in a different direction, by Paul (Gal. 6:17) and by Ezekiel (9:4).