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Michigan State University

Bible Resources: Using the Online Catalog

Using the Online Catalog

The M.S.U. Libraries Online Catalog may be searched by keyword (any word that might be in a book's title or bibliographic entry), by specific book title, by author (last name first), or by subject heading.  Areas of the stacks can be browsed by call number on your computer.

To look up the text of particular books of the Bible, do a title search like this:  Bible Genesis.  Bible John.  Bible Psalms.

Following a productive keyword search, click on one or more of the subject headings near the bottom of the record to find more books on that subject.

Subject headings come from a set of fat red books in the Reference collection, at Z 695, in the center lobby of the Main Library.  Subject headings are standardized words and phrases assigned to each book when it is cataloged; they describe a book or electronic resource's contents intellectually, whether those words actually appear in the title or not.  To do a subject heading search, click on Advanced search on the Libraries’ home page under Library Catalog, near the top left of the page.   Some commonly used subject headings are below.

Search for information about different books of the Bible by using subject heading phrases composed like this:  Bible--[name of book of the Bible]-- [standardized sub-heading for type of material desired].  Here are some examples:

Bible Genesis--concordances

Bible Isaiah--criticism, interpretation, etc.

Bible Matthew--commentaries

Bible Acts--history

Bible Acts--criticism, textual

Bible Acts and Epistles--commentaries

Commonly Used Subject Headings about the Bible

Abraham--biblical patriarch

Apocalyptic literature



Bible. English. [name of version of the Bible], for instance, Bible English New International Version

Bible. English. Authorized, to find copies of the King James Version

Bible. [language] for Bibles in other languages, for instance Bible. Latin. Vulgate or Bible. Spanish



Bible—Black interpretations


Bible—criticism, interpretation, etc.—[country name]

Bible—criticism, interpretation, etc.—history [time periods]

Bible--criticism, narrative

Bible—criticism, textual


Bible—feminist criticism


Bible—history of Biblical events

Bible—in motion pictures

Bible and evolution

Bible and science

Bible as literature

Bible films

Creation--biblical teaching

Dead Sea Scrolls

Isaiah (biblical prophet)

Jesus Christ

John, the apostle, saint

Luke, saint

Moses (biblical leader)

Paul, the Apostle, Saint

Ten Commandments

Wisdom literature

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