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Religion & Philosophy Research Guide: RLGN 490 - Capstone (Online)

This research guide features resources and strategies for finding information and conducting research related to Religion and Philosophy.

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Welcome to the RLGN 490 course research guide! This page serves as an additional help to you in using the library effectively to complete the course's research assignment.

The page is organized as follows:

  • Citing Information Sources
  • Interlibrary Loan Services
  • Biblical Texts Online
  • Dictionaries and Encyclopedias
  • Commentaries
  • Journal Articles

Each resource section describes the type of information source, how to locate it in the library, and provides recommended titles.

If you need additional assistance, please feel free to contact the liaison librarian listed on the left side of the page.

Citing Information Sources

The following resources will help you to correctly cite the information sources you use in completing your assignment. Plagiarism is a serious academic offense with serious consequences, yet it is easily avoided by citing the sources you use. Remember to cite whether you paraphrase, summarize or directly quote another work.

Interlibrary Loan Services

Many valuable information resources in theology are still only available in print format, including key theological dictionaries and commentaries. However, the physical materials owned by the Jerry Falwell Library are accessible to you via interlibrary loan (ILL) services. Through ILL you may:

  • Request that items be checked out and mailed to your residence
  • Request pages in certain books be scanned and delivered to you electronically

To use these services, you must create an interlibrary loan account, which can be done from the ILL page.

Please note: Be sure to allow sufficient time to have requests processed.

Biblical Texts Online

This site provides full-text access to standard academic original language editions of the Bible, including the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia (BHS), the Novum Testamentum Graece (NA 28), and the United Bible Society's Greek New Testament (UBS GNT). Access to the Septuagint and Vulgate is included.

Dictionaries and Encyclopedias

Several key reference works in biblical studies and theology are listed below. These authoritative, classic works are not available electronically but you may utilize interlibrary loan services to obtain needed informarion. In order to help you identify relevant pages or articles, consider using the preview featuers in Amazon ("Look Inside") or Google Books ("Preview").

To locate concordances, execute this search in the JFL catalog and locate the Bible translation you use.


Commentaries provide in-depth analysis of books of the Bible verse-by-verse. In addition, they provide important background information related to the author, audience, historical setting, cultural setting, etc.

  • Access the library’s online catalog at for print and electronic books.
  • From the library’s web page under where you find “Find Resources” click on “Books.” 
  • Under the search box you will see a default search for “Print,” "E-book” and "Audiobook." 
  • For commentaries on biblical books search “Bible” and the name of the Bible book followed by the word "Commentaries, e.g., “Bible. – Matthew -- Commentaries.” For books that a number in front of them such as in I John use, "Bible -- Epistles of John -- Commentaries" or for I Samuel use, "Bible -- Samuel -- Commentaries."

As you look through the results, be on the lookout for noted scholars in the field and reputable academic publishers (B&H Academic, Brazos, Eerdmans, Baker, IVP, Zondervan, etc.).

Note: If there is a particular commentary you want to use that is available only in print, you can use interlibrary loan to request scans of pages corresponding to the passage you are studying.

Below are a few recommend commentaries to begin your study of Matthew.

Journal Articles

Articles in theological journals can be a good source for scholarship on very specific topics. Below is a sample search on the canonization of the Bible, which you can also perform by clicking this link.