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Religious Studies

This guide offers help in finding books, articles, and other sources on world religions. The guide is introductory and broad in scope.


Use a style manual to cite your sources correctly. Ask your professor which style to use.

Check out the Library's citation-specific guide for all your citation needs!

How to Cite the Bible

When you're writing a paper that contains stories or quote from the Bible, you'll need to cite it in-text and in most cases in the Works cited as well. The information that you'll need to include is the version of the Bible that you're using (King James? English Standard? etc) and the chapter and verse that you are quoting or discussing. Here is how to do so in MLA, APA and Chicago. Please check with your instructor about which citation style they'd like you to use, and if they have any changes to it they want you to use when citing the Bible. 

How to cite the Bible in MLA (from Purdue OWL)

For the in-text citation, you use the version you're citing in italics, followed by the book, the chapter number and then the start and ending verses that you are quoting or referencing like so:

(Version of Bible, Book. Chap#.StartVerse#-EndVerse#)
(New Jerusalem Bible, Ezek 1.5-10)

If you are using the same version of the Bible for your whole paper then you only need to say which version you are using in the first in-text citation, the others all you'll need to put in is the book, chapter and verse.

First citation: (New International Version, Gen. 3.15)
Next citation: (Phil. 3.8)

For your Works Cited page, you'll start the citation for the Bible with The Bible italicized, followed by the version you are using, the publisher and the year the version you are using was published. 

The Bible. Authorized King James Version, Oxford UP, 1998.

How to cite the Bible in Chicago (from The Chicago Manual of Style (17th ed.) available in the Reference section)

In your footnotes or endnotes (depending on the version of Chicago you are using), you should include the book (usually abbreviated) chapter and verse, followed by the version of the Bible that you are using. You should write the version out fully in your first citation and then after that you may abbreviate.

1. 2 Kings 11:18 (New Revised Standard Version). 

2. Gen 25:19-36:43 (NRSV)

You don't need to include the Bible in your reference list at the end of the paper unless the instructor asks you to. 

How to cite the Bible in APA (from Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) available in the Reference Section)

In your in-text citations, cite the book, chapter and verse, followed by the version of the Bible that you are using. After your first citation, if you are only using one version of the Bible, you do not need to cite the version for later citations. 

First citation: In 1 Cor. 13:1 (Revised Standard Version) it is stated ...
Next citation: In Gen 25:30, the following events...

You don't need to then include the Bible in your reference list at the end of the paper unless your instructor asks you to.