Much of the Bible comes to us in story form. We should as familiar with the basic ingredients of a story as we are with riding a bicycle or driving our car. Sadly, many preachers are not. Rather than quickly dissecting a story into preachable points, take the time to review the basic ingredients. How does this story work? Consider:
1. The Setting. Where does it begin and end? What is its written context? What is the historical, geographical and cultural setting?
2. The Plot. What is the background information provided? Then what is the crisis, complication, tension point? As the tension rises, where is the resolution or climax of the tension? Then finally how does the story conclude? Is the plot simple or complex? Does it have a second complication and a second climax? Is the story left unresolved? Why?
3. The Characters. Who is major and who is minor in the story? What clues are there to help you picture the characters? Is there direct description? What do they do? What are they called? What do they say?
4. The Narrator. Every story has a story teller, but he is usually very inconspicuous. What is the perspective of the narrator? Does the narrator make any overt comments in the story? Are there brief moments of explanation or helpful asides?
Basic stuff, but we are not harmed by reviewing it again.