Unlike revising an answer to make it objective, what tips can we offer users to answering objectively and in the spirit of the site? I.e., how do we express and assist users in understanding that answers should be scholarly and that any overlap an answer has with their personal beliefs should be incidental (aside from the simple fact that one's religious affiliation might make them somewhat of a reliable resource).
Guidelines and tips for posting answers
- Answer from the perspective of an outside observer, such as an archaeologist, historian, or other anthropologist about a denomination, a majority Christian belief, a respected and prominent Christian's statements, or Christian history.
Find at least one relatively credible resource to support your answer before you even write it.
- If you heard it last weekend in a sermon, verify it elsewhere first.
- If you're attempting to craft an answer that speaks about general Christian belief, just use Wikipedia -- it's democratic knowledge, so it somewhat reliably represents that majority belief.
- If you're speaking about a particular denomination's beliefs, find an official resource from that denomination.
- If your answer represents a prominent Christian's beliefs, find a quote or citation from that Christian.
- Qualify all personal observations, preferences, and other interjections.
- State at the top of your answer whose beliefs you're attempting to explain. In doing so, if you find yourself typing, in my opinion, click the discard link.
- Offer personal experiences, insights, and analogies only to clarify an official belief, if that official belief is difficult for "outsiders" to understand.
- Research other major denominations and be familiar with differences in beliefs. Offer answers from those denominations when able, and answer from your own denomination (if you're a Christian) in a similar fashion.