The Wisdom of a King

Rank, J. Arthur, 1888-1972


  • J. Arthur Rank expressees his faith in God and humanity and the power of faith to transform the world in to a peaceful society.
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And now, This I Believe. Here is Edward R. Murrow.
This I Believe. The name J. Arthur Rank has become synonymous with motion picture production, not only in his native Britain, but in this country, too. Perhaps it is less well known that Rank has been in the flour milling business since the age of 17. His father owned a mill in Yorkshire, and Rank inherited his business skill and a strong religious faith from him. Even today, he regularly teaches a Sunday School class. It was a flyer in financing some films with Biblical themes that drew him into the movie industry. A busy man, Rank still manages to spend a good share of his time at his country home in Surrey, England with his wife and two daughters. Now he gives us his creed.
I am not one of those people who believe that the world is "going to the dogs" or that there is no hope for civilization. I have a great faith in human nature and I believe civilization can be salvaged from the total wreck it has almost become, but I am quite sure that salvation can come not through political or economic factors but through divine intervention.
I believe that most of the ills of the world-and the world is only a mixed collection of individuals like you and me-are not traceable to physical or mental causes but result from a lack of spiritual power in you and me caused by the low priority we give to the development of the spiritual side of our being and to the lack of faith that God will give us His Holy Spirit if we ask Him.
What do I believe? Is my belief of any value in an age when the main topics of conversation are based on atomic warfare and distrust? This I believe-that God is our Father and loves us and that Christ died for the world and came to show the world what God was like and to teach the world the way to have a joyous life and be free from fear-and the world includes you and me.
I believe, too, that it is only by following the commandments He has given us can we be delivered from the spirit of defeatism which haunts so many people today.
I believe in the fellowship of the Holy Spirit. I believe that without the influence of the Holy Spirit in our lives it is impossible for us to do our daily job effectively, whether that job be the ordinary everyday task of bringing up children in the home or whether it be the high and great responsibility to which our young and gracious Queen has been called.
I believe in faith in humanity and a faith in a God who understands and guides me, and against which the fears, trials and disappointments of our day cannot prevail.
If I were asked to express this faith in words I could find no better way than did our late King during his Christmas broadcast in the fateful days of 1939: "I said to the Man who stood at the Gate of the Year, 'Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.' And he replied, 'Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the hand of God. That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.' "
This I believe with all my heart.
That was British film magnate J. Arthur Rank, an important citizen in the exacting world of business, who has refused to let religion be crowded out of his life.