Police said the suspect, from Worcester, was detained under public order laws on suspicion of causing alarm or distress by displaying abusive or insulting writing.
Officers from West Mercia Police launched an inquiry on Sunday after a man was seen wearing a T-shirt describing the 1989 disaster, in which 96 Liverpool fans died, as “God’s way of helping” a pest control firm.
Pictures have been posted on social media of the man, who was asked to leave the Brewers Arms, in the St John’s area of Worcester, by the landlord.
Superintendent Kevin Purcell said: “I understand the alarm and distress the offensive language shown on this t-shirt will have caused to both the people in and around the pub and further afield.
“I would like to thank the landlord of the pub for his support and all the members of the public who were in the pub at the time and came forward to report it.
“Police acted very quickly to arrest the individual and he remains in police custody at this time.”
The Hillsborough disaster happened in April 15, 1989 before and during an FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest when 96 supporters were crushed to death.
This led to a series of safety improvements at the ground and other stadia.
In April the Hillsborough Inquests concluded that the tragedy’s 96 victims had been unlawfully killed.