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Turabian 9th Edition: Using the BIBLE

Referencng the Bible


Referencing the Bible


In the footnote

If you use only one Bible version, note this in the first footnote. After this first footnote, the version no longer needs to be included. 

    Jeremiah speaks of 'great and unsearchable things you do not know' (Jer. 33:3 ESV).1

If you do reference additional versions, each change of versions requires a similar footnote.


      The omniscience of the Lord is further emphasised in the rhetorical question, "Who can hide in secret places so that I cannot see them?" (Jer. 23:24 NIV.2

1 All subsequent Scripture quotations are taken from the English Standard Version unless otherwise stated.

2 New International Version


In the assessment text

If just a reference is given to a Bible verse in a sentence, no footnote is necessary. The reader can look up the Bible reference and translation rather than write the whole verse. The Bible reference is placed in brackets.

      Paul is continually encouraging the early believers to stand firm in the faith (1 Cor. 16:13; Gal. 5:1; Eph. 6:14; 2 Thess. 2:15)


In the bibliography

The Bibel does not need to be included in the bibliography. However, if you are referencing study notes, commentary, articles, maps or other materials found in a Bible, include the full referencing information in your bibliography.

      The advice that each of Job's friends gave represents a well-known way of understanding and dealing with suffering.1

1 Life Application Study Bible, Large Print ed. (Wheaton, ILL: Tyndale House, 1996). 1003.



Life Application Study Bible. Large Print ed. Wheaton, ILL: Tyndale House, 1996.


Additional Information

  •  Do not include the page numbers
  • When referring to whole chapters or books of the Bible, write the complete name- do not shorten, underline, italicise or put in quotations: 

             The Old Testament contains books of poetry.

              This passage is taken from the New American Standard Bible.

              Exodus 20 contains the Ten Commandments.

  •  Use hyphens to indicate a series of verses- Gen. 1:2; John 1:1
  • Use a hyphen if all verses in a range are being used- Rom. 12:1-4 (every verse from 1 to 4 is being referenced)
  • Use a comma to separate verses if not using a whole section of verses- Rom. 12:1, 4 (only verses 1 and 4 are being referenced)
  • It is not necessary to include the faces of the publication (city, publisher, date) in a Bible footnote.

Other Scared Texts

Adapt the general pattern for biblical references as appropriate, as many of these texts are divided into parts similar to the Bible's.


Capitalise the names of the works themselves but italicise the names of their parts

       Qur'an, al-Baqarah

Do not abbreviate the names of these works or their parts

Abbrevations for books of the Bble

Abbreviations for books of the Bible