There are two basic parts of preparation. The first part is to ask what the text is saying, what the purpose of the author is, and what the biblical writer was saying to the biblical readers.
The second part of preparation is to discover what the text says to people today. How can I get this text across to people in the 21st century in a way that grips them?
When I do that, I will move towards drama, because all drama consists of conflict. A TV movie starts off, somebody is shot, and they can’t explain the murder. The police are called in, and they try to unravel the crime. They work all the way through the evidence until at the end, they discover the murderer was the maid and not the butler.
Sermons can be that way. They start off by raising an issue important to the audience. I am not teaching people the Bible; I’m talking to people about themselves from the Bible. And so I want to talk about issues they have that are reflected by the issues in the biblical text. If we can put sermons together with a sense of conflict, with problems that need to be solved, questions that need to be answered, needs that must be satisfied from the Scriptures, then we will have a dramatic sermon.
From The Art & Craft of Biblical Preaching.
Edited by Haddon Robinson and Craig Brian Larson