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I received this comment on an answer I gave.

Please edit this to quote all those verses in full. – curiousdannii

Am I suppose to quote all the scripture I reference to? Is this an official site policy or his opinion? I took the time to provide a link for each verse. It seemed it would have appeared overwhelming if I fully quoted all 9 or so references. Isn't providing a link where they can read it themselves sufficient? Also is there a way to do that hover your cursor over a verse and it appears?

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    From my perspective, you can interpret "verses in full" as the relevant parts of the verses in question. For example, if John 1:1 is your verse, but the only part relevant to your answer is "the Word was God," you can simply quote that, rather than the whole verse. – Nathaniel is protesting Sep 25 '15 at 13:00
  • Which post was that on? I can't find it now. – curiousdannii Sep 25 '15 at 23:42
  • If I remember correctly your answer was basically nothing but a list of verse references. Without quoting the verses it is borderline not-an-answer. – curiousdannii Sep 25 '15 at 23:44
  • They were 7 verses supporting how the Spirit helps the believer, but they were backing up an answer that was only a sentence long, so it appeared like just a lot of verses. The answer was deleted because it was a duplicate question. – Matt Clark Sep 26 '15 at 0:58
  • @MattClark Did you delete the answer yourself? We normally keep answers on questions which are closed as being dupolicates. And yes exactly, one sentence plus a list of verses doesn't count as an answer. – curiousdannii Sep 26 '15 at 1:18
  • Caleb deleted it, and those 7 verses were connected to support a sentence which was part of the answer, there was 2 verses connected to the other part of my answer. So the whole answer wasn't a sentence. Anyways, it's good you commented because it helped me understand how better to answer in the future, just making sure it wasn't just your opinion, so I asked for a larger consensus, thanks dannii. – Matt Clark Sep 26 '15 at 1:23
  • @curiousdannii Answers on duplicates may or may not survive. Basically the rule of thumb is that any time there is activity on any of them they all get nuked and usually redirected to the canonical post. If somebody is editing to improve a post, it should usually be moved instead. If there is a NAA flag on dups, we usually just clear the whole slate. It's not really fair to go on editing and using normal functions when new answers are not allowed and hence the post vetting system isn't really functional. If posts are really duplicates then any good answers can find a home on the dup target. – Caleb Sep 26 '15 at 12:27
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    @Caleb If only it were easier to migrate answers without fully merging the question – curiousdannii Sep 26 '15 at 13:00
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There are many examples of great answers on this site that don't fully quote every verse they reference, like this one and this one.

What makes these generally acceptable? The unquoted verse citations are used as references to support a point being made in the answer. That is, the citation is tangential to the argument, and is there only to make it more convenient for the reader to do an in-depth analysis of the strength of the author's argument.

If the argument relies on the text of the verse, then it needs to be quoted or summarized. Making a claim central to the argument and then saying, "This is supported in Passage A, Passage B, and Passage C," without quotes or summaries or analysis, is not conducive to a coherent argument.

I don't remember the details of the answer you are referring to, so I can't go into more detail than this. But a good argument, whether here or elsewhere, always guides readers carefully from start to end. It never requires them to leave the confines of the argument in order to understand the argument.

Recommending extra resources (like Bible passages) without quoting them is fine so long as they are not essential to understanding the argument.

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  • Ok, thanks, I'll take the time to quote those that are most pertinent. Thanks for your answer and time. – Matt Clark Sep 26 '15 at 0:49
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While not absolutely required, it is the preferred method of referencing sourced material.

See the help center article on how to answer.

When you find a useful resource that can help answer a question (from another site or in an answer on Christianity Stack Exchange) make sure you do all of the following:

  • Provide a link to the original page or answer
  • Quote only the relevant portion
  • Provide the name of the original author
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  • Thanks, I'll check out that link. – Matt Clark Sep 26 '15 at 0:51

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