Sermon:
One of the first things we did after we moved to St. Albert was to make our car Canadian. Besides getting a new license plate this meant installing a block heater for those cold Albertan mornings. As wonderful as a block heater may be it is useless unless you plug it in. No, really Pastor - you had to tell me that? Well do you realize that we are just as dead unless we are plugged into Godís Word? As we head into the new year the Apostle Peter encourages us to stay plugged into Godís Word because the Word alone gives us new life and a new attitude towards others.

Why do we say that we are useless unless plugged into Godís Word? Jesus once told Nicodemus that unless he was born again he could not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. When we were born we inherited certain physical and spiritual traits from our parents. Maybe you have your fatherís eyes, or your motherís hair. One thing is certain though; we all inherited our parentsí sinfulness. Thatís what Jesus meant when he told Nicodemus that flesh gives birth to flesh (John 3:3).
Therefore, before we can see God face to face we need to get cleaned up. Jesus told Nicodemus that he could receive such cleansing through the washing of water and the Spirit (John 3:5). This was a reference to baptism assuring those who have been baptized that they have been wiped clean of their sins.
Unfortunately many Christians are skeptical of baptismís power. They wonder how water can do such wonderful things. The power to cleanse, however, lies not in the water but in the Word. Peter speaks about the power of Godís Word when he says, ďFor you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of GodĒ (1 Peter 1:23). Just as detergent gives water the power to clean our clothes so Godís Word gives the water of baptism the power to cleanse us from sin.
Therefore those words that we read in the Bible are not just a bunch of stories written thousands of years ago by some quirky religious guys; itís Godís Word. And when we read the Bible we are grabbing onto a power line that connects us to a potent power source. Godís Word in the Bible has the same power as the Word that he used to create and sustain the world. It has the same strength as the Word that Jesus used to bring Lazarus back from the dead. Just think, when doctors want to treat someone today they have to hook them up to IV tubes, give them drugs, and in extreme cases try to get their hearts beating again by electro shock treatment. Jesus didnít use any of that though to bring Lazarus back to life; he simply spoke the Word. If the Word can bring back a dead body think of what it can do to a spiritually dead heart.
Stay plugged into Godís Word. Thatís what brought you to faith and thatís what will continue to sustain you in the days ahead. The great thing about the power of Godís Word is that itís free. While the cost of heating and powering our homes may be on the rise, the cost of strengthening