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Citation Resources: The Bible

Bible Citations: Where

Cite Bible passages/verses in footnotes, or insert them in parentheses in the body of your paper. 

You do not need to include these citations in the bibliography. 

Mistakes to Avoid

Do not italicize, underline, or use quotation marks around books and versions of the Bible. 

More Information

For more guidance on citing the Bible, refer to these sections of Turabian:

  • 16.2.3
  • 16.4.3.1
  • 17.8.2
  • 19.8.2
  • 22.3.2.3
  • 24.6

Bible Citations: How

To cite a Bible passage, include the book name, chapter and verse. Separate the chapter and verse numbers with a colon.

Books may be abbreviated by using Turabian's traditional or shorter abbreviations. 

Traditional abbreviations: Shorter abbreviations:
  • Josh. 1:1
  • Jo 1:1
  • Matt. 28:1
  • Mt 1:1

Turabian's traditional and shorter abbreviations are listed in the documents below.

Be consistent in your use between the two types. Check with your professor which format is most appropriate.

Picture of Bibles

Citing Bible Translations

Include the Bible translation in parentheses after your first Bible citation:

  • Prov. 31:1 (NASB)

You may state in the footnote: "Unless otherwise noted, all referenced biblical passages are in the North American Standard Version." 

If you use more than one Bible translation in your paper, be sure to include the version in parentheses whenever you introduce a different translation.

  • Neh. 2:1 (NKJV)
  • Ezek. 40:2 (NIV)