Here is an outline of essential elements for good preaching from my perspective. Much more could be said about each of these elements. This is only a summary.

1. INTERPRETATION – What is the meaning of the text? Determining textual meaning is the essential first step.

2. TRANSLATION – The job of the preacher is to transfer the meaning of the text to the audience in terms and contexts they understand. This is a kind of “translation,” reproducing textual meaning via the sermon.  

3. ORGANIZATION – In order to accomplish #2, every sermon should be structured for maximum effect. Thus, a sermon should contain the following 7 elements:

Exposition       –          Explaining the meaning of the text.

Illustration       –          Elucidating the meaning of the text.

Application     –          Applying the warranted meaning of the text.

Imagination     –          Helping people penetrate reality.

Argumentation –         Proving the point of the text via its logical trajectory.

Motivation      –          Moving the will to obey – (via rhetoric, passion, exhortation, etc.)

Exhortation     –          Telling them what to believe and practice; to do and not to do.

4. COMMUNICATION – Connecting with people via content and style. 

5. PASSION – Passion for Christ, the Word, and people expressed in delivery.

6. PERSUASION – Preaching to convince people to think & act biblically. Behavior is based on belief. Change how people think and you will change how they behave. James 1:22.

7. TRANSFORMATION – Information is not transformation. Life transformation is the goal of preaching – salvation of the lost; edification of the saved.