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How to Cite Bible Verses

11 May 2018

The Bible has become a popular resource for a lot of research papers, but not everybody is aware of how to cite Bible verses correctly. Below you will find the style guides and how to use them when citing stanzas or rhythms.

Popular Style Guides

The most popular existing style guides are MLA, APA, Turabian and Chicago styles. Let’s review how to use them! 

How to Cite Bible Verses MLA

MLA stands for Modern Language Association and is frequently used by people.

When you do your first verses citation in the text, you should open parentheses and list the name of the translation, then write the Bible verses reference. When you do your second in-text verses citation, open parentheses and write only the scripture reference. 

You must write abbreviations correctly. The MLA handbook contains well-formed varieties. 
A period is required by MLA format when distinguishing between the chosen sentence and chapters, not a customary colon. 

It’s forbidden to underline individual Bible’s books or its stanzas. 

In general, the reference for verses includes:

  • translation or/and the Bible’s version you used
  • the editor’s name (the author’s name, if available)
  • the date of publication
  • print copy/accessed online

How to Cite Bible Verses APA

When you want to cite and do your first in-text citation from the Bible verses, you should open parentheses and write down the book and chapter, verses afterward.
Once you mentioned verses, you will not need to repeat it again. 
When distinguishing, you can use either a period or a colon. It is up to you.

How to Cite Bible Verses in Text with Turabian Style

Using Turabian Style when you cite requires writing the Bible scripture reference first, only then you need to list the translation. 
It also requires using a colon when distinguishing, not a period. It is important because if you do not follow these rules, you violate Turabian style’s format for verses. 
Turabian allows using one of the two sets of abbreviation writing. It may be a traditional set or a short version. 

How to Cite Bible Verses Chicago

Using that style requires to write the abbreviated book’s name, the chapter’s number and the number of verse, never use a page number. 

Use colon between verse and chapter.

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