It’s great to quote scripture and provide scripture references when you’re writing for your church website. In this quick tutorial, I’ll show you how you can set up your scripture references so that you hover your mouse over the reference you see a little window with the actual verse. Here’s a quick example for one of my favorite verses, John 7:38.
The really cool thing about this tip is that once you install this little script I’m about to show you, you don’t have to ever do anything again. The script just looks through the words on your website and automatically links the scripture up for you. So, it’s even easier than making links to other pages of your own site. All the work is done by Reftagger.
WordPress plugin: On the Reftagger website you will see the code to install on your site along with some specific instructions for platforms like WordPress. There is a Reftagger WordPress plugin available, but it hasn’t been updated in a long time. I haven’t installed the plugin because I just included the script on my site as I’m about to show you how to do.
Easy Manual Installation
Go to the Reftagger website https://reftagger.com/
On their homepage, you will see the Get The Code section. You can customize what translation you use for your scripture references. I like the New King James Version, so that’s the translation I selected.
If you want to get super fancy, they have a page with a bunch of different options you can customize like heading styles, font sizes, and colors.
Once you’re happy with your customizations, you just copy and paste the code they give you into your website. I work with WordPress and almost exclusively with Genesis themes. All Genesis themes have a settings page where you can easily paste in header and footer scripts. So, just paste the Reftagger code into the Footer Script section like this.
Click the Save Changes button and you’re all set.
Other Installation Options
If you are not using a Genesis Theme you can install the Header and Footer Scripts plugin that will give you this same feature of being able to paste in the Reftagger scripts without having to edit any theme files.
Another option is to edit your theme’s footer.php file and include the Reftagger script. I generally try to avoid editing child theme files if at all possible, so this is my least favorite option to get this going.
You really don’t have to do much after installing Reftagger to use it. Just write out the name of the book and the verse (or range of verses) and Reftagger pretty much does everything for you. Reftagger is pretty good at finding the verses in your website. It even knows about abbreviations for book names. Here are some examples of how it works.
Reftagger is able to detect most of the common abbreviations for the names of the books in the Bible. All of these formats work.
- Gen 1:1
- Gn 1:1
- Ge 1:1
- Genesis 1:1
Linking To Chapters
You can link to an entire chapter of a book in the Bible too. The pop-up will just show the first verses of the chapter, and there is a link to continue reading the rest of the chapter. Like if you wanted to share John 3
Note that chapter level linking is an option you may need to enable for yourself on the Reftagger customization settings page.
Ranges of Verses
Lastly, you can link to a span of verses. For example, if you wanted to share John 3:18-19