Just Say No

Larry Robertson
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Following is an illustration brother Larry often used in his "Daniel" sermon. When I ran across it, I felt a lot ofyoti would like to "hear " it again. Larry haa just started to write the word "no " on the board but got sidetracked, and that's where we begin....

A didn't put the word down that I ^/started to put down-NO! It's a word we need to learn. Really. A word that needs to be a part of our vocabulary. We're not "yes" men when it comes to the Devil. Our response to his bid for us must be negative. It must be no. And if we have learned to use that word before we come to the forks in the road, ii seems to come out fairly easy-No!

In this sermon and in others that I preach, I have told a story which is true, I suppose. History supposedly relates this story about a young man who had great talent who was going to college. He was on a debating team and had a great deal of ability. But he also had not done what Daniel did about drinking. He began to drink a little more and a little more, and of course, to start out is a mistake as we all know. We better say "no" to that to start out with. Every alcoholic took the first drink sometime, when he should have said 'no' to to begin with.

But he had shown his ability to debate, and there was in that audience an old gentleman who knew him and his family and loved him quite a lot and could speak to him. So afterward he said to him, "Why don't you quit your drinking and make something of yourself? Why don't you just turn things around?" The young fellow went home and the instructions of the old gentleman he had some confidence in rang in his ears. And that night he promised himself and promised his God he would never drink again. Never again.

He grew more quickly in various fields, and even in fields of politics and was noticed by quite a few around, and was once invited to take a message to the president of the United States, Mr. Adams. Mr. Adams knew something about his background, knew something about the young fellow and asked him to stay another day and a dinner would be given in his honor and he would meet many of the dignitaries of the time, and the young man agreed.

The next day they sat down at the table for dinner. At the table was a wine glass which was customarily there. Here was a fork in the middle of the road, if you please. Here was decision time. "Here I am in a place where all men do this, and, really, am I going to just stick out like a sore thumb and not drink this wine?" But there was no decision as far as this young fellow was concerned. He thought about his promise to God and to himself and he said,"Mr. President, I'm sorry, but I cannot drink this wine. I will not drink this wine." He said it loud enough for the press to hear, for the congress to hear, for everybody who sat at that table to hear. He was not ashamed of it. It is said it was reported the next day as front page news, that the President of the United States had stood and said, 'All glasses to the center of the table. There'll be no drinking this day in honor of this young man who promised himself he would drink no more. There will be no drinking at this table today!' We might be surprised how much influence we might have if we not only stood for the truth, but said it loud enough for somebody to hear it."