That's the question David Jackman of Proclamation Trust asks and answers in this excellent article. (HT: UA)
Colin has abstracted Jackman's pleas:
1. Get rid of the idea that we have to make the text relevant.
2. Go back and work hard on the text, to find out what it meant to its first hearers or readers.
3. Make sure the original context determines your contemporary application.
4. Set the passage also in its wider Biblical theological context.
5. Focus your understanding and purpose in key sentences.
6. Develop a clear programme.
7. Study your congregation.
8. Apply the truth to the whole person.
9. Make your language count.
10. Pray for the Holy Spirit to blow his life-giving breath through it all and to do the gracious and powerful work of which only he is capable.
Are you Evil and Pernicious? (Mark Jones) - "FOR TO THIS YOU HAVE BEEN CALLED, BECAUSE CHRIST ALSO SUFFERED FOR YOU, LEAVING YOU AN EXAMPLE, SO THAT YOU MIGHT FOLLOW IN HIS STEPS." --1 PETER 2:21 [im...
3 hours ago