This hymn was written by a former shoe salesman who became a Baptist preacher. John Henry Yates, born in Batavia, New York, on Nov 21, 1837 was the son of John and Elizabeth Yates who emigrated from England.
After attending Batavia Union School, John Yates became a shoe seller, and later a local department manager for a hardware firm. Next, he worked as an editor of a the local newspaper.
In 1858, he was licensed to preach in the Methodist church, and was later ordained. He served as pastor of West Bethany Freewill Baptist Church.
In 1891, Yates sent “Faith Is The Victory” to Ira Sankey, who wrote the music for it. It first appeared in The Christian Endeavor Handbook and in Gospel Hymns No. 6.
Lyrics: John H. Yates
Music: Ira D. Sankey
Encamped along the hills of light,
Ye Christian soldiers, rise.
And press the battle ere the night
Shall veil the glowing skies.
Against the foe in vales below
Let all our strength be hurled.
Faith is the victory, we know,
That overcomes the world.
Faith is the victory! Faith is the victory!
O glorious victory, that overcomes the world.
His banner over us is love,
Our sword the Word of God.
We tread the road the saints above
With shouts of triumph trod.
By faith, they like a whirlwind’s breath,
Swept on o’er every field.
The faith by which they conquered death
Is still our shining shield.
On every hand the foe we find
Drawn up in dread array.
Let tents of ease be left behind,
And onward to the fray.
Salvation’s helmet on each head,
With truth all girt about,
The earth shall tremble ‘neath our tread,
And echo with our shout.
To him that overcomes the foe,
White raiment shall be giv’n.
Before the angels he shall know
His name confessed in Heav’n.
Then onward from the hill of light,
Our hearts with love aflame,
We’ll vanquish all the hosts of night,
In Jesus’ conqu’ring Name.
Let us remember to have faith in each and every situation in life.