Matthew 16:26 - (Jesus said) "For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?"
Mr. Wang Jian is the kind of fellow who had it all.
He's the kind of individual whose daily events are reported in People and Us magazines. He has achieved such a noteworthy status because of a number of reasons:
1. He is the co-founder and co-chairman of a company which operates China's fourth-largest airline.
2. He is responsible for running finance, logistics, and other businesses.
3. He has a beautiful and adoring family.
4. His net worth is somewhere around $1.3 billion.
You might be forgiven if you, having taken a look Mr. Wang Jian's resume, decided that he is unstoppable. If you did say that, you would need to be forgiven, because you would be wrong. You see, Mr. Wang Jian is stoppable. Indeed, a few weeks ago he was stopped by the force of gravity.
Let me explain: Wang Jian and his family were touring Provence, France. In order to get a really cool photograph, Mr. Wang Jian stood on a wall which would allow the beautiful countryside to be seen as a background.
Unfortunately, Mr. Jian didn't pay close attention to what he was doing and he stepped off the edge of the wall and fell 50 feet.
Fifty-seven-year-old Wang Jian, entrepreneur and billionaire businessman, was pronounced dead at the local hospital.
* The love of his family couldn't save him.
* The respect of the business community and his many employees couldn't give him one more hour of life.
* His billion dollars couldn't purchase a day's reprieve from death.
For Mr. Wang Jian, the words of Jesus held true: "What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?" The bottom line is this: there will come a time when death will come for each of us. Death may come after it has given a lengthy warning, or it may show up unexpectedly. No matter how death comes, no matter when it comes, at that moment death arrives -- we will be helpless.
A million Facebook friends and a bulging bank account will not impress death, will not be enough to make it return another day. The only thing which makes a difference on the day death comes is whether a person had faith in the Savior, or not. With faith in the Redeemer, death becomes a beautiful portal to life and joy eternal. Without the Redeemer, all that is left is an eternity of never-ending hurt and regret.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, while I may not know when death is coming for me, I do know -- with faith in the Redeemer -- I need not be afraid. For the forgiveness and salvation Jesus has won, may I be truly grateful. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
The above devotion was inspired by a number of sources, including one written by Lucy Pasha Robinson on July 3, 2018 for Independent Online. Those who wish to reference that article may do so at the following link, which was fully functional at the time this devotion was written: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/wang-jian-chairman-hna-dies-fall-provence-france-a8431066.html
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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