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← Conrad Murrell's Funeral: Forever With the Lord

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Showing Revision 8 created 03/31/2018 by Carrie Spradlin.

  1. We welcome you to this special occasion,
  2. this special moment,
  3. as we come to give thanks to God
  4. for the life of Herbert Conrad Murrell
  5. of Bentley, Louisiana.
  6. He was born December 15th, 1928 in Bentley
  7. and went to be with his Lord
  8. February 23rd, 2018
  9. at the age of 89 years,
    2 months, and 8 days.
  10. He's survived by his children
  11. Timothy Murrell and his wife Shirley,
  12. James Murrell and Cherry,
  13. Kenneth Murrell and Sylvia,
  14. William Murrell and Brenda,
  15. and Pamela Johnson and Dale.
  16. Step-children, Gary Gatch and Lynn,
  17. David Gatch and Melissa,
  18. Julia Cogan and Christopher,
  19. and Stephanie Holliday;
  20. 17 grandchildren,
  21. 17 great-grandchildren,
  22. a sister Glenda Landry
  23. and a host of other family
    members and friends.
  24. He was preceded in death
    by his first wife Eunice,
  25. his second wife,
    Grace Owens Gatch Murrell,
  26. his daughter-in-law,
    Kay Malone Murrell;
  27. his parents Alvin and
    Era Thompson Murrell,
  28. brothers Kerwin, Fred,
    and Waynon Murrell,
  29. and a sister, Lila Gayle Willingham.
  30. "Forever with the Lord."

  31. Those were Conrad's words
    about his father Alvin
  32. when he passed in 1971.
  33. I heard him say it in a sermon
  34. joyfully, powerfully -
  35. "forever with the Lord."
  36. And now it applies to him.
  37. To his father and his mother
  38. and his first wife Eunice
  39. and his second wife Grace,
  40. and now Conrad himself,
  41. forever with the Lord.
  42. "And I heard a voice from heaven saying,
  43. 'write this: Blessed are the dead
  44. who die in the Lord.
  45. From now on, blessed
    indeed, says the Lord,
  46. that they may rest from their labors
  47. and their works do follow them.'"
  48. "A good name is to be chosen
  49. as better than precious ointment."
  50. So how can one describe Conrad Murrell?
  51. How would you describe what he was to you?
  52. Perhaps a beloved father or grandfather?
  53. A father in the faith?
  54. The greatest influence in your life?
  55. The deepest thinker and
    preacher you ever heard?
  56. A faithful brother and a true friend?
  57. Or, just a godly, humble man?
  58. He was one who carried the mark
  59. and fragrance of Christlikeness
  60. for over 65 years as a Christian.
  61. Mark LaCour, on his first trip to Bentley
  62. to meet his preacher he had heard of,
  63. said this, "I drove to nowhere
  64. to meet a man no one knew,
  65. who would become my father in the faith.
  66. That day changed everything.
  67. Who I would marry,
  68. what work I would do,
  69. the brethren I would come to love,
  70. how I would minister,
  71. and who this great God is
  72. that I would come to know more fully
  73. because of Conrad Murrell."
  74. (Incomplete thought)
  75. We could stay here till the end of March
  76. sharing memories.
  77. What single greatest memory do you have
  78. of Conrad's life or ministry?
  79. Well, the first time I heard him preach
  80. was 1977 on a cassette tape.
  81. A friend gave me a cassette series
  82. called "Faith Cometh."
  83. I was forever changed.
  84. First time I heard him in person
  85. was in Weatherford, Texas, in 1980.
  86. And then the last time I heard him preach
  87. was in St. Louis at his beloved friend
  88. Holmes Morris' conference in April 2013.
  89. I, like many of you, remember
  90. many particular sermons
    that were life-changing.
  91. The Ruth series;
  92. the Sin of Jeroboam;
  93. the Passover series on
    redemption from Exodus;
  94. "Paul, a Pattern of Conversion," Acts 26;
  95. the Mysteries of the
    Kingdom on the parables.
  96. Don Johnson said God gave His church
  97. a great gift when He
    gave us Conrad Murrell,
  98. with his unique ability to show us
  99. the difference between
    truth and popular error.
  100. I remember personal times in our home
  101. and his kindness and
    prayers for our children.
  102. And I remember him distinctly saying
  103. how children grow up too quickly
  104. and are soon gone.
  105. I remember a two-mile walk with him
  106. one morning when he was 84
  107. over here at his house.
  108. He was walking so briskly,
  109. I could hardly keep up with him.
  110. I remember conversations on theology
  111. and sharing some of my views,
  112. hoping he would be impressed,
  113. or at least that he might agree.
  114. He wasn't impressed.
  115. But he would begin graciously sharing
  116. the truth with me more,
  117. and insight and wisdom would flow,
  118. and I realized I had not seen as much
  119. as I had thought I'd seen.
  120. I remember his love for all his churches.
  121. Your churches.
  122. And many others he loved over the years.
  123. He always had his churches on his heart,
  124. and in his mind, and in his prayers.
  125. We all remember how wonderfully
  126. he led the Bentley camps,
  127. and those afternoon Q&A's.
  128. He would try to get you to ask questions
  129. and very few would ask questions,
  130. because they knew he was going to sum up
  131. at the end the things that we had said
  132. that were incorrect.
  133. In two sentences, he could just distill
  134. the gold from the moment.
  135. I, like so many many,
  136. greatly benefitted from his great wisdom
  137. and discernment,
  138. and his ability in giving out counsel.
  139. I once sought his counsel on
    a major decision in 2017.
  140. Several people affirmed
  141. my considering this choice.
  142. He alone said to me,
  143. 'Don't do it. I don't think God's in it.'
  144. And he was right.
  145. I was spared a great mistake.
  146. I remember his humility.
  147. His simplicity of life. His honesty.
  148. His no sense of self-importance.
  149. His godliness, his sense of humor,
  150. his love for his wife,
  151. his children, his grandchildren.
  152. And, of course, I remember
  153. the power and the authority
  154. of his preaching.
  155. Gary Gatch said this:

  156. "I remember vividly how his messages
  157. fed my soul.
  158. I had never experienced that before,
  159. but I had longed for it.
  160. I remember thinking
  161. that is what preaching should be -
  162. the heavenly power,
  163. the solid doctrinal content,
  164. the experiential reality,
  165. the accurate, deep
    theological understanding,
  166. coming under the anointing
    of the Holy Spirit
  167. like an irresistible force
    of awesome truth.
  168. When you heard Conrad preach regularly,
  169. it would hit you, it would slap you,
  170. it would startle you, surprise you,
  171. rattle you,
  172. even confuse you for awhile.
  173. You'd go away saying
  174. now wait a minute.
  175. I thought I knew.
  176. I thought that...
  177. I've always believed...
  178. I've never heard such things before.
  179. That's what his ministry would do to you.
  180. But in the coming days,
  181. a metamorphosis happened
    supernaturally in your life.
  182. You start being changed by the truth.
  183. You're freed. You're transformed.
  184. You begin to love the Bible more.
  185. You begin to have clarity on doctrines
  186. that you never were clear on before.
  187. You begin to love God's people more.
  188. You begin to see salvation in a way
  189. never seen before.
  190. You begin to see this is a much bigger
  191. and bigger God and more glorious Christ
  192. than you've ever realized.
  193. And you even joyfully begin to realize
  194. the Holy Spirit is real and wonderful.
  195. Conrad's ministry did that
  196. to hundreds, perhaps thousands.
  197. The force of truths by the Spirit
  198. through a man from Bentley.
  199. Unknown and yet well known.
  200. Conrad and his friend Leonard Ravenhill

  201. stood alone in power in preaching
  202. above all others, in my opinion.
  203. And time fails us to share
  204. all that we remember and treasure,
  205. but an old Christian said
    of a godly friend of his
  206. who passed away, whose example and life
  207. was powerful. He said this.
  208. And I thought this
    applies to Conrad Murrell.
  209. "In a day of hustle and bustle
  210. and busy activity,
  211. it would do us well to study the life
  212. of one who stood in
    the midst of this world,
  213. but was not of this world,
  214. was never drawn into it
  215. and spent his life
    drawing others out of it
  216. into the joy which
    he himself so fully knew.
  217. In an age of false ideas
  218. and shallow hero worship,
  219. it is good to have seen one
  220. who took at his model the Son of God,
  221. and he knew above most
  222. what intimacy with God means
  223. in producing a true and fragrant life."
  224. His dear friend Holmes Morris
  225. said of Brother Murrell,
  226. "Conrad saw and felt deeply
  227. that which was wrong with modern churches,
  228. and was not afraid to
    take a stand against error."
  229. Well, that's kind of an understatement.
  230. He writes a tract:
    "Mourn. God may hate you."
  231. Or I could mention others.
  232. "He was not afraid to
    take a stand against error.
  233. A man has to have the
    power of the Spirit of God
  234. upon him to have such
    a ministry for years."
  235. Holmes Morris says,
  236. "I believe he had special
    gifts and anointing
  237. which became the key
    to his entire ministry.
  238. It has been said when
    a giant tree finally falls,
  239. it leaves an empty space in the sky.
  240. When God finally takes Conrad Murrell
  241. home to glory, it will certainly leave
  242. a huge empty space in our sky."
  243. In the early years of his ministry,
  244. Conrad wrote a weekly column
  245. in the Colfax Chronicle
  246. called "Bread from the Book."
  247. It was just devotional commentary
  248. on Psalms.
  249. And on Psalm 42, Conrad said this:
  250. "It is a terrifying experience
    to look around you
  251. and find yourself alone
  252. without anyone on earth
  253. to rescue you from peril,
  254. but it is a most wonderful
  255. and blessed reality when
    you lift your eyes
  256. above the land of the living,
  257. all of whom shall very soon die.
  258. It's a blessed thing to lift your eyes
  259. to the eternal God who ever lives
  260. and to find Him to be
  261. your everlasting refuge."
  262. Praise God for our dear brother.
  263. To the children:

  264. Herbert Conrad Murrell.
  265. Do you know him?
  266. Tell me.
  267. His name they did mention.
  268. Among the saints he did labor.
  269. With boisterous voice, he spoke His favor.
  270. I am crucified with Christ,
  271. nevertheless I live.
  272. He stood firm.
  273. His life the Lord did sieve.
  274. You've heard the power
    in which he did speak.
  275. Christ in His glory,
    and yet this man weak.
  276. No great man in his own stature.
  277. His Lord, his only pasture.
  278. Tell me you've heard.
  279. He didn't speak his own name.
  280. The faith of the Son of God his only fame.
  281. A man remembered for his God.
  282. A testimony of where our Savior trod.
  283. Tell me they've told you
    about his great King.
  284. Tell me they've told
    you His praise to sing.
  285. Tell me they've told you
  286. about the kingdom he'll inherit.
  287. Tell me they've told you,
  288. it's not by his merit.
  289. Tell me they've told you,
    it should be yours.
  290. Tell me they've told you,
  291. Christ would open the doors.
  292. Tell me they've told you
    why he did preach.
  293. He could not contain the
    love he had for each.
  294. Tell me you've heard
  295. of the great God he should soon behold.
  296. Tell me you've heard
    of the riches he's told.
  297. For his telling is past,
  298. but yours is not.
  299. Abound in what you've heard.
  300. Let it not rot.
  301. Children, speak.
  302. Love others to the end.
  303. For our great God a Savior did send.
  304. Tell me they've told you
  305. the power of obedience and humility.
  306. Tell me they've told you
  307. his peace and victory.
  308. I am the youngest of five children.

  309. I was the baby.
  310. I was kind of apart
  311. from my brothers and sisters growing up.
  312. And I just wanted to share
  313. some of the things that I observed
  314. of my dad.
  315. You may not know.
  316. These are little things; small things.
  317. My dad had a little room.
  318. It was no larger than a small closet.
  319. He could barely fit the little desk in it.
  320. He had some homemade bookshelves.
  321. His library was in that bookshelf.
  322. Spurgeon.
  323. Wesley.
  324. Brainard.
  325. Josephus.
  326. See, those of are some of the books
  327. I remember reading.
  328. Some of the scholarly,
  329. some of the sermons - Spurgeon's sermons,
  330. he studied those very, very deeply.
  331. He was a big fan of the Reformation.
  332. That was the strongest part of his drive;
  333. formed in what occurred
  334. during the Reformation.
  335. A lot of the truths that he discovered,
  336. that God showed him,
  337. came from the teachings
  338. of these great preachers
  339. that taught during these times.
  340. But he would get up in the morning,
  341. and you wouldn't see him.
  342. He would go to that room.
  343. He would not come out.
  344. You could hear him pray.
  345. You could hear him talk to God.
  346. That's how he started his day
  347. every single day.
  348. On Monday's, he didn't eat.
  349. Monday was his fast day.
  350. For most ministers that I've seen,
  351. their focus is on Sunday
    and Wednesday night,
  352. and maybe some business
    meetings in the church,
  353. but dad's - what I saw was daily.
  354. I never saw him get mad at something
  355. that he shouldn't have gotten mad at.
  356. He's gotten mad at me.
  357. He got mad at a lot of things.
  358. But I never saw him get mad
  359. at a lot of things that we
    would have gotten mad at.
  360. Case in point:
  361. We lived on Hanley Loop.
  362. He stuck his hand
    underneath the lawn mower.
  363. And it split his fingers.
  364. And his vernacular was not extreme.
  365. What he said was not extreme.
  366. He very calmly called me over.
  367. I was seven years old.
  368. Called me over and said,
  369. "Billy, go get your mama."
  370. That was it. Go get your mama.
  371. He knew he needed help.
  372. There was no point in
    saying anything else.
  373. His humor - he was a pragmatist.
  374. He was a sneaky, sneaky pragmatist
  375. when it came to work.
  376. Now, as a young man, I didn't
    like to work too much.
  377. I worked very hard because
    my dad made me work,
  378. and I learned to work.
    He taught me to work.
  379. I remember this one particular time
  380. that I had discovered
    a few games at school,
  381. and one of them was pick-up-sticks.
  382. You remember pick-up-sticks?
  383. He said, "you want
    to play pick-up-sticks?"
  384. Yeah!
  385. We all know what happened next.
  386. I'm in the backyard or in the pasture
  387. picking up sticks.
  388. So, his humor was amazing.
  389. He made up words.

  390. He made up words.
  391. But the one word that sticks with me
  392. is "stickability."
  393. Stickability is your ability
  394. to finish whatever you start.
  395. That's meant a lot to me in my life.
  396. I'd like to close with this one thing
  397. that I remember from one of his sermons.
  398. He said as an analogy
  399. to make people realize how small
  400. and insignificant we are in this world;
  401. he said the next time you start thinking
  402. yourself high and mighty;
  403. next time you start thinking
    well about yourself,
  404. go get a bucket. Fill it with water.
  405. Stick your arm in the bucket.
  406. Slosh that water around
    as much as you want to
  407. for as long as you want to.
  408. And when you pull your
    arm out of that bucket,
  409. the hole that you leave in that bucket
  410. is the impact that you left on this world
  411. when you leave.
  412. That's the truth.
  413. My dad's impact was not of his own doing.
  414. It was because he made himself
  415. an instrument.
  416. That's all.
  417. Thank you.
  418. (Incomplete thought)

  419. I haven't had the honor of sitting under
  420. as many of my papa's sermons
  421. as many of you have.
  422. I've sat through some.
  423. But, that is an honor.
  424. Because of papa,
  425. my dad was always a pastor.
  426. I do remember when I was young
  427. going to some of his revivals
  428. and camp meetings from time to time.
  429. Dad would bring us.
  430. When I was four years old,
  431. the very first song I ever sang in church
  432. was "He's Still Working On Me."
  433. And I know that I never went
  434. to any of my Papa's camp meetings
  435. or revivals that he didn't request
  436. that I sing that song.
  437. And at the time, it was
    just a childhood song.
  438. I'm not going to say it didn't
    mean anything to me. It did.
  439. But, you know, you
    think of it kind of like,
  440. "This Little Light of Mine,"
  441. or just a childhood song.
  442. But through the years, it has grown
  443. to mean more and more to me.
  444. And I find that the lyrics are applicable
  445. to any age no matter how young or old.
  446. Because we are a work in progress always.
  447. There's always more growing
  448. that we can do in the Lord.
  449. And I know that that was
    part of my Papa's message
  450. to all that he shared Jesus with.
  451. And there was never a time - not one -
  452. even as recent as Christmas day
  453. when we sat at the dinner table
  454. and Papa sat to my left
  455. at the head of the table.
  456. He would always say,
  457. "He's still working on me,
  458. is He still working on you?"
  459. Always. Always.
  460. And that was the last
    time that he said it to me.
  461. And today, the song,
  462. though it began as just a childhood song
  463. means more to me than it ever has before,
  464. and I know that it always will.
  465. I'm not sure of the date,
  466. but it was the day after Christmas
  467. when he was put into the hospital.
  468. In the weeks following,
  469. we went to visit him in the hospital,
  470. and he slept the whole time.
  471. He didn't wake up to visit.
  472. And we were getting ready to go.
  473. Pam was there. My dad was there.
  474. My husband, Kevin, and myself were there.
  475. And we stayed and
    visited for a little while,
  476. and before we left,
  477. I just felt led to lean over
  478. and to sing it into his ear.
  479. And I asked which was his good ear
  480. and I leaned over
    and I sang it in his ear.
  481. And he started kind of
    moving around in the bed.
  482. And he opened his eyes
  483. and they filled up with tears.
  484. Because I think we were questioning
  485. if he was responsive or hearing us.
  486. But he definitely heard it
  487. and he opened his eyes
  488. and they welled up with tears.
  489. And he started moaning as if to say it.
  490. He couldn't get the words out,
  491. but I know that they were there.
  492. So, Kaylee and I are
    going to sing it today.
  493. If you know it, sing along with us.
  494. I wanted to read a Scripture.
  495. Philippians 1:6
  496. "Being confident of this very thing,
  497. that He which hath
    begun a good work in you
  498. will perform it until
    the day of Jesus Christ."
  499. Praise the Lord.
  500. On February 23rd,
    Papa drew his last breath.
  501. And he was complete.
  502. But up until that moment,
  503. he chose to allow Jesus to continue
  504. to work on him throughout his whole life.
  505. And so I challenge all of us,
  506. I know if he was here
  507. and could say one more thing to me,
  508. he would say,
  509. "He's finished with me,
  510. but is He still working on you?"
  511. Let's join our hearts in prayer.

  512. Our gracious God and Father in heaven,
  513. we praise Thy holy name.
  514. And we are very thankful today
  515. for the grace of God
  516. that came to Conrad Murrell
  517. in saving him as a young adult,
  518. so suddenly, so powerfully;
  519. and for calling him into the ministry
  520. of the gospel of the grace of God.
  521. Lord, thank You for the grace that's come
  522. to him and through him,
  523. to his family and to so many.
  524. We're grateful for the life and ministry
  525. of your servant.
  526. Lord, many of us could say
  527. in our own lives,
  528. there's not arisen in all our lives
  529. a prophet like this Moses,
  530. whom the Lord knew so closely.
  531. Or like Elisha,
  532. a holy man who passed
    by our lives continually.
  533. Like a David who served his own generation
  534. in the will of God.
  535. And now has died in a good old age,
  536. full of days, riches, and honor.
  537. Full of faith and the Holy Spirit.
  538. And like Simeon has now departed
  539. in peace.
  540. Father, Your Word says the day of death
  541. is better than the day of one's birth.
  542. Better to go to the house of mourning
  543. than the house of feasting.
  544. And the living take it to heart.
  545. Far better, said Paul,
  546. to depart and be with Christ,
  547. because that is gain.
  548. So, Lord, today comfort every heart here.
  549. We feel like there will be a deep hole
  550. in our water bucket for a long time.
  551. It's there. A big space in our sky.
  552. This one who's now with You.
  553. Thank You for the fruit that abides.
  554. Thank You for the
    legacy, for the memories.
  555. Lord, Your Word says
  556. the name of the wicked will rot,
  557. but the memory of
    the righteous is blessed.
  558. So comfort every heart.
  559. Strengthen every soul.
  560. Touch every tear.
  561. Make us all more faithful Christians,
  562. not only because we had Conrad
  563. touch us in our journey.
  564. Make us more faithful now in his death,
  565. more like him,
  566. and ultimately, Lord,
  567. more like our Savior.
  568. We thank You, Lord,
  569. for that pure river of the water of life,
  570. clear as crystal, proceeding out of
  571. the throne of God and of the Lamb.
  572. Lord, in the midst of the street
  573. on either side of the tree of life.
  574. And Lord, we thank You there,
  575. there will be no more curse,
  576. but the throne of God and the Lamb
  577. shall be in it,
  578. and Your servants will serve You.
  579. And they shall see Your face.
  580. And Your name will be on their foreheads.
  581. And there's no night there.
  582. No need for candle or light of the sun,
  583. for the Lord God giveth them light,
  584. and they shall reign forever and ever.
  585. And He said these sayings
  586. are faithful and true.
  587. Behold, I come quickly.
  588. Blessed is he who keeps the sayings
  589. of the prophecy of this book.
  590. Lord, we bless Your name this day.
  591. We worship You in this hour.
  592. And we're very, very grateful
  593. from our hearts for all Your mercies
  594. that You've shed abroad
  595. through such a life.
  596. In the sure and mighty name
  597. of our Lord Jesus Christ,
  598. we pray. Amen.
  599. There's an old saying

  600. that God buries His workers,
  601. but doesn't bury His work.
  602. But a work that is never buried
  603. works off of the memory
  604. of the workers that are.
  605. And one of those such workers
  606. is H. Conrad Murrell.
  607. In Ecclesiastes 7,
  608. we've referred to it a few times already,
  609. it says in v. 1, "A good name is better
  610. than a good ointment,
  611. and the day of one's death is better
  612. than the day of one's birth.
  613. It is better to go to a house of mourning,
  614. (here)
  615. than to go to a house of feasting
  616. because that is the end of every man
  617. and the living takes it to heart.
  618. Sorrow is better than laughter,
  619. for when a face is sad,
  620. a heart may be happy.
  621. The mind of the wise is in
    the house of mourning,
  622. while the mind of fools
  623. is in the house of pleasure."
  624. Verse 1 of Ecclesiastes 7
  625. talks about a good name,
  626. and how a good name is better
  627. than a precious ointment.
  628. And of course, you kind of wonder why
  629. there's a comparison between an ointment
  630. and a good name.
  631. And of course, back in the day,
  632. when a baby was born,
  633. depending on the wealth of the family,
  634. they would anoint the baby with ointment.
  635. And so, as he's making this comparison -
  636. Solomon here writing Ecclesiastes -
  637. he's drawing these contrasts
  638. when it comes to wisdom
  639. it isn't always found in the
    conventional kind of way.
  640. Many times, it's found in contrasts
  641. where you have a good name -
  642. a good name -
  643. not just a name you're given at birth,
  644. but a good name.
  645. And it's better than that ointment
  646. that you were given at birth.
  647. And that's why he says a
    little bit later on in v. 1
  648. that a good name translates also
  649. into pleasant expiration dates.
  650. They go together.
  651. So December 15th, 1928
  652. was the day Conrad was born.
  653. According to Ecclesiastes 7,
  654. February 23rd, 2018 is a better day.
  655. In fact, he celebrated
    that birthday 89 times
  656. and that one day in February
  657. is worth all the more than that
    one day in December combined.
  658. Because that's what the text says.
  659. They don't compare in value.
  660. So what makes the day of one's death
  661. a better day?
  662. You've got to be asking the question
  663. to yourself as you sit here
  664. in the classroom, God says,
  665. in Ecclesiastes 7,
  666. which is the house of mourning.
  667. Will my day of death be
    better than my birthday?
  668. Really, the only way you
    can answer that question
  669. is the first part of the verse:
  670. Do I have a good name?
  671. We don't really care about the ointment
  672. you might be having in
    your storage pantry.
  673. It's the good name.
  674. So what makes February 23rd, 2018

  675. a better day than December 15th, 1928?
  676. Well, there's a few things
  677. according to the text.
  678. For starters, not everybody has
  679. a better day on the day of their death.
  680. I think you know that.
  681. On that day in December,
  682. when Conrad was given his name
  683. by his mom and dad,
  684. Adolf Hitler was given a name
  685. on the day of his birth.
  686. Everything being equal,
  687. on the day of their deaths,
  688. something has taken a shift, hasn't it?
  689. Because your name identifies you
  690. with your character
  691. and what you have done
  692. or what you haven't done.
  693. A good name isn't a catchy name.
  694. You've got people today

  695. that try to name their
    kids in such a way
  696. that they stand out.
  697. Like Mr. and Mrs. Aire who
    named their son "Billion."
  698. We want our son to stand out.
  699. We're going to name him Billion.
  700. Oh, he'll stand out all right.
  701. So it's not just a catchy name.
  702. But it's not even a great name.
  703. He doesn't say "a great name."
  704. He says, "a good name."
  705. You've got a lot of great names out there
  706. that won't be found in
    the Lamb's Book of Life.
  707. Thomas Edison had a great name.
  708. In fact, he was called
    "America's inventor."
  709. The greatest inventor America had.
  710. But he was a naturalist.
  711. Einstein. Everybody knows who Einstein is.
  712. And he worshiped the god
    of Spinosa the philosopher.
  713. He doesn't have a good name.
  714. A great one among men.
  715. Among scientists.
  716. Among philosophers.
  717. But the day of his death is not better
  718. than the day of his birth.
  719. Because it's not a good name.
  720. Proverbs 10:7 says,

  721. "The memory of the
    righteous is a blessing."
  722. It's a blessing to us.
  723. Knowing who Conrad was,
  724. reading his books,
  725. listening to his sermons,
  726. seeing pictures, telling stories -
  727. they're meant to encourage us.
  728. And they do.
  729. As they all focus toward that
    name above every name,
  730. Jesus Christ.
  731. See, if your name doesn't dovetail
  732. into that direction,
  733. you don't have a good name.
  734. And it's not going to be a good day
  735. when the expiration date comes for you.
  736. Now, this is just what the text says.
  737. Do you ever wonder why you're even
  738. given a name in the first place?
  739. A name identifies you.
  740. It makes you part of a society.
  741. It tells the community around you
  742. that you exist and you're an individual.
  743. You give babies names.
  744. They don't want you naming fetuses,
  745. because that would make them valuable.
  746. That would make them a person.
  747. That would give them rights.
  748. That would somehow elevate them
  749. into the community.
  750. But we're all given names.
  751. We're given names for a reason.
  752. And God calls us by name.
  753. The very essence of what
    it means to be human
  754. means that we have this naming function
  755. that we see in Adam in
    the garden, for example.
  756. He names the animals.
  757. He names them because that's what they are
  758. and God says, "name the animals."
  759. Because God's given him a name.
  760. That's how he can name Eve
  761. and say who she is.
  762. Not just a proper name, "Eve,"
  763. but her function and her identity.
  764. We do that.
  765. It's called dominion.
  766. And you have a name.
  767. But the question this morning
  768. is will it be a good name?
  769. We celebrate Conrad's life
  770. because he had a good name.
  771. His name's found in the
    Lamb's Book of Life.
  772. There are many names,
  773. names that you know,
  774. that will not be found in
    the Lamb's Book of Life.
  775. Well, if you need an example,
  776. Caitlin Jenner will not be found
    in the Lamb's Book of Life.
  777. Bruce Jenner might be.
  778. That's just an example.
    It's not a good name.
  779. You can change it.
  780. You can nickname it.
  781. You can make it catchy.
  782. You can do something among men
  783. and be great, but if it isn't good,
  784. and the righteous are blessed by it,
  785. and Christ is glorified in it,
  786. it's not a good name.
  787. And the day of one's death is not
  788. going to be better than
    the day of one's birth.
  789. So how is this day, February 23rd,

  790. a better day than the
    day of Conrad's birth
  791. celebrated 89 times?
  792. Well, the most obvious way it's better -
  793. it's better for Conrad.
  794. Think about what that day meant for him.
  795. It wasn't like a birthday party
  796. and celebrating and blowing out candles
  797. and opening up a few presents.
  798. Think about how Conrad entered the world
  799. on the day of his birth.
  800. Let's compare the two days.
  801. On December 15th, he entered the world
  802. under the wrath of God
  803. according to Ephesians 2.
  804. He entered heaven under the grace of God
  805. in nothing but praise
    and worship to the Lamb.
  806. I think that's a better day.
  807. He comes in crying. He goes out praising.
  808. Surrounded by sinners
  809. and a world of demons and depravity,
  810. and according to Romans 8, futility.
  811. And he enters a world of completion,
  812. inheritance.
  813. That work, we heard sung,
    in Philippians 1:6 is done.
  814. It's completed.
  815. He's complete.
  816. He's entered into his inheritance.
  817. That's a good day.
  818. The book he writes, "Faith Cometh,"
  819. it's sight cometh.
  820. There's no more salvation when,
  821. it's salvation now.
  822. These are realities that our brother
  823. not just has experienced on that day,
  824. but that's for all of us
  825. who have a good name.
  826. His fight ended.
  827. His race concluded.
  828. His cross exchanged.
  829. A name that was written
  830. on the Savior's hand -
  831. Isaiah 49:16.
  832. Inscribed in the palm of His hand it says.
  833. Inscribed in the Lamb's Book of Life.
  834. He's now one with the
    name above all names.
  835. He's one with his Savior.
  836. So it's not only better for Conrad,

  837. it's also better for us.
  838. Better for us.
  839. Wait a minute. That doesn't
    make a lot of sense.
  840. I mean, I thought we were
    praying that he would live on.
  841. You pray for your loved ones.
    You don't want to see them die
  842. and leave and depart
    from you, but it's better.
  843. Even for us left behind.
  844. How is it better for us?
  845. Being sad isn't the same
    thing as being worse off.
  846. The heart can be sad, it says,
  847. and there can be laughter in the heart.
  848. We don't mourn like the world
  849. who has no hope.
  850. It's better for us because,
  851. as it says in Hebrews 13,
  852. we can follow his conduct,
  853. imitate his faith - leaders among us,
  854. the writer tells us.
  855. Observe their conduct.
  856. Imitate their faith.
  857. Well, his conduct all the way
  858. till the day he died was faithfulness.
  859. You need to imitate that kind of faith.
  860. That's better for us.
  861. He didn't back out at the last
  862. hundred yards of the marathon.
  863. That's a testimony for us.
  864. It's a testimony knowing that God
  865. can take a man made out of clay like us,
  866. same frailties and weakness,
  867. and bring him across Jordan.
  868. That's a good thing.
  869. He can turn around and
    say I'm about to die.
  870. You watch me die
  871. and you follow my example.
  872. You need me to die,
  873. so you can follow my example.
  874. Now that's a leader.
  875. Reminds me of Bob Jennings
  876. making his own coffin.
  877. Constructing it. Who does that?
  878. Leaders saying I'm ready to go.
  879. You watch me make this.
  880. You learn from me.
  881. Like Paul would say, "follow my example."
  882. We need leaders like that
  883. who can face death;
  884. that have no fear of death, as it says.
  885. We're not enslaved as it says in Romans 8.
  886. You cry, "Abba, Father;"
  887. you can't cry "scary, scary"
    when it comes to death.
  888. No. That's the testimony.
  889. So it's better for us
  890. that Conrad leaves us richer
  891. because of these things.
  892. Remember his legacy of how he freely gave.
  893. How he judiciously spoke.
  894. Sometimes you couldn't
    pry a word out of him.
  895. Sometimes.
  896. But that's a testimony
    that he leaves behind.
  897. He passionately preached,
  898. and he unconditionally loved.
  899. But lastly, it's not only a
    better day for Conrad,

  900. and a better day for us,
  901. ironically, it's a better day for God.
  902. Wait, how can it be a better day for God?
  903. There's no better and worse for God.
  904. He's perfect, right?
  905. Exactly. We know that.
  906. But God says in Psalm 116:15,
  907. "Precious in the sight of the Lord
    is the death of His godly ones."
  908. God says last Friday,
  909. He had a precious moment.
  910. Friday.
  911. That was God's precious moment.
  912. He says that.
  913. Precious in the sight of the Lord
    is the death of His godly ones.
  914. Something changed on the
    part of God and Conrad
  915. last Friday,
  916. that will change with you
    on the day of your death.
  917. The intercession of Christ is complete
  918. for our brother in the earthly body.
  919. He enters into the joy of his Master.
  920. Our sympathetic High Priest -
  921. there's no sympathy anymore
    with Conrad there.
  922. He's perfect and complete.
  923. He's not entering into that type
  924. of necessity from the High Priest
  925. in the earthly body.
  926. It was the testimony
  927. of what Christ did on the cross
  928. with Conrad's sins in taking them away
  929. and taking away in propitiation
  930. the wrath of God,
  931. and God making those promises
  932. to be faithful to the end,
  933. God was vindicated on that day.
  934. I was faithful to the end with My own.
  935. I kept My own to the end,
  936. as Christ prays in John 17.
  937. I kept this one till the end.
  938. And I am testifying to all the world
  939. that I kept him till the end.
  940. That was a better day for God.
  941. He certifies He's faithful
  942. to His own people for His own purposes
  943. and for His own cause.
  944. Better for Conrad, better for us,
  945. better for God.
  946. If you don't have a good name,
  947. I guess you better hope
    you had a good ointment.
  948. Which isn't going to prove effectual
  949. on that day.
  950. Jesus had a name at birth.

  951. "You shall call His name Jesus
  952. for He will save His
    people from their sins."
  953. The baby in the manger
    didn't save anybody.
  954. Not yet.
  955. You know how many Jesus's there were
  956. running around in Israel in those days?
  957. It was a common name.
  958. It's a derivative of Joshua.
  959. Hundreds of Jewish children named Jesus.
  960. But at the end of His life,
  961. He had a name no one else had:
  962. Jesus Christ.
  963. The Messiah.
  964. He had to learn to become
  965. that faithful High Priest.
  966. You don't become that in the manger.
  967. You do earn those stripes when you say,
  968. "It is finished," at the cross.
  969. That's a good name.
  970. The name above all names.
  971. At the name of Jesus
    Christ, men are saved.
  972. They call upon the name
    of the Lord and are saved.
  973. What kind of power does
    a name like that have?
  974. The name of Jesus Christ.
  975. That's a good name.
  976. A name that demons fear.
  977. A name above every name.
  978. So, I close with this.

  979. Do you have a good name?
  980. Good names also have
  981. good reservations in heaven already made.
  982. Made in the Lamb's Book of Life.
  983. If the only place your name is recorded
  984. is on your birth certificate,
  985. your name will not be found on that day.
  986. Because on that day as it says
  987. in Revelation 20, "And they looked,
  988. and his name was not recorded
  989. in the Lamb's Book of Life."
  990. Or, his name was recorded
  991. in the Lamb's Book of Life.
  992. Your name. It identifies who you are.
  993. It doesn't have to be catchy,
  994. and it doesn't have to be great.
  995. But it has to be tied and surrounded
  996. and dovetailed into the
    name above all names -
  997. Jesus Christ -
  998. for it to be a good name.
  999. And you know when it's a good name,
  1000. it says in Revelation 2,
  1001. He'll give you a new name.
  1002. Imagine that.
  1003. A new name.
  1004. And it won't have a last name
  1005. that identifies me with
    the tribe of LaCour,
  1006. and identifies me specifically
    out of the tribe of LeCour - Mark.
  1007. And I've got a middle
    name to make sure
  1008. in case there's two Mark's,
  1009. I'm Mark Keith LaCour.
  1010. No, it won't be like that.
  1011. It will be a new name.
  1012. A new name that He gives to His own.
  1013. His own children.
  1014. A name that incorporates His name with it.
  1015. Abram wasn't always going
    to stay Abram, right?
  1016. He was going to be called "Abraham."
  1017. And the "-ham" part is part of Yahweh
  1018. when you pronounce it in the Hebrew.
  1019. And God says you're going
    to take in part of My name.
  1020. And you're going to walk
    the rest of your life -
  1021. this is what you're going to be called.
  1022. No, you're not going to be called Saul.
    You're going to be called Paul.
  1023. No, Cephas, you're going
    to be called Peter.
  1024. What are they going to call you?
  1025. What is that new name going to be?
  1026. Do you have one?
  1027. You can't get a new one,
  1028. unless you have a good one.
  1029. And good ones are found recorded
  1030. in the Lamb's Book of Life by the Lamb.
  1031. Conrad Murrell had a good name.
  1032. He wore many hats, but it's that name.
  1033. Will that name be remembered?
  1034. Of course. Will yours be remembered?
  1035. Let's ask the Lord and pray.

  1036. Father, we ask, help us in this, Lord,
  1037. in Your Word.
  1038. We seek to lift up Jesus Christ.
  1039. We ask Father, that You would
  1040. bring Your Word to bear.
  1041. Cause us, Father, to have a good name.
  1042. Not just simply the names
  1043. our parents gave us,
  1044. but the name You give us.
  1045. One of Your own.
  1046. One of the Lamb's elect.
  1047. He died on the cross for our sins.
  1048. We love You and we thank You.
  1049. In Christ's great name we pray, Amen.
  1050. I want to read a passage

  1051. out of 2 Timothy.
  1052. We want to listen close to the words.
  1053. And as we read this,
  1054. it is Paul.
  1055. But I think it's worthy
    that Conrad Murrell
  1056. can say these words.
  1057. At that time while he was still waiting
  1058. his time.
  1059. He says here:
  1060. "For I am now ready..."
  1061. I am ready.
  1062. And he'd want to know, are we ready?
  1063. Now remember, one time he said,
  1064. pulled between two -
    whether to stay or not stay,
  1065. it'd be better to be there than here,
  1066. but he stayed because
    God still wanted him here.
  1067. We should be content with the will of God
  1068. to be here as long as God wants us.
  1069. And Brother Conrad was
    still blessing my heart
  1070. even when he could hardly
    get out of the house.
  1071. Why? God didn't leave him here
  1072. just for a trophy.
  1073. He left him here still a treasure
  1074. that is rich if you could sit at his feet
  1075. and just begin to listen to his few words.
  1076. He would embrace you
  1077. with the love and grace of God.
  1078. Alright, now.
  1079. "I'm now ready to be offered."
  1080. Now this is a continuing thing here.
  1081. (unintelligible)
  1082. Many times rejected by some.
  1083. But loved by the many that are here
  1084. on this day now.
  1085. He says, "the time is at hand,
  1086. I have fought a good fight.
  1087. I have finished my course."
  1088. Not somebody else's.
  1089. He didn't come off an assembly line.
  1090. But from the throne and the heart of God,
  1091. to minister to you and I.
  1092. "I have kept the faith.
  1093. Henceforth, there is laid up for me
  1094. a crown of righteousness."
  1095. One thing we see that is missing
  1096. in the language - it's not really missing,
  1097. but it's not there.
  1098. He's ready to be offered.
  1099. He didn't say or use the word "death."
  1100. Do we get it?
  1101. That's right. It's not in that passage.
  1102. Though it was in knowing it would be so,
  1103. and I wasn't there at the death
  1104. with the rest of the family,
  1105. but I don't think he had a fear of death.
  1106. (unintelligible)
  1107. It's been conquered in Christ.
  1108. And his life was to the
    end, the Apostle Paul,
  1109. was to be offered.
  1110. He was still going on.
  1111. (unintelligible)
  1112. He said have those bring my cloak.
  1113. He didn't know when, but
    he knew it was at hand.
  1114. And our brother knew his was at hand,
  1115. and he was ready to be offered.
  1116. And I would say you never heard him
  1117. in fear of death, did you?
  1118. No.
  1119. We misunderstand sometimes
  1120. like the disciples.
  1121. Lord, if Lazarus is just asleep...
  1122. He said I'm going to have to speak
  1123. on your level, your terms - he's dead.
  1124. But here the Apostle Paul
  1125. and our brother Conrad,
  1126. he didn't talk about these things.
  1127. Men, for each of us,
  1128. the greatest fear on
    the face of this earth
  1129. is death.
  1130. Just rest in the Lord.
  1131. Just trust Him.
  1132. Nothing to fear.
  1133. Before my wife sings this song

  1134. that Conrad always loved
  1135. and wanted to hear her sing,
  1136. I've been thinking about some words
  1137. that Conrad penned -
  1138. first preached and then penned
    in his book "Faith Cometh."
  1139. He said, "Faith is not a state of mind.
  1140. Faith is not conviction.
  1141. It is not assurance.
  1142. Faith is something you do
  1143. in light of who God is
  1144. and what God has said."
  1145. And I saw that in our dear brother,
  1146. an abiding faith
  1147. and just a rest in Christ.
  1148. And this song, I think, captured
  1149. that restfulness of his
    spirit in the Lord.
  1150. No matter what the Lord gave,
  1151. it was alright with our brother
  1152. and should be alright with us.
  1153. Our God is good.
  1154. He would really shout loud too.
  1155. Consider the lilies,
  1156. they don't toil, nor spin.
  1157. And there's not a king
  1158. with more splendor than them.