The Inspiring Story Behind “By Faith”

Written by on February 18, 2024

In the 1970s, Keith Getty was a young Christian living in Northern Ireland during the height of “The Troubles.” As violence escalated between Protestants and Catholics, fear and uncertainty gripped the nation.

One night, as bombs exploded nearby, Keith found himself contemplating the book of Hebrews in the Bible. Chapter 11 recounts the faith of Biblical heroes who endured great trials. This gave Keith an idea – to write a hymn focusing on the power of faith over fear.

In 2003, Keith shared his lyrics with fellow songwriter Stuart Townend. Stuart crafted the uplifting melody we now know and set Keith’s words of steadfast belief in motion. They titled it “By Faith.”

When Kristian Stanfill first encountered the hymn in 2008, he was struck by its message of persevering through life’s difficulties with God. He felt called to record it for his album, helping introduce “By Faith” to a new generation.

Since then, the hymn has brought comfort and strength to countless Christians in times of testing. Its lyrics affirming “faith sees mountains moved” gives hope that, with God, all things are possible.

The unlikely collaboration between Keith, Stuart and Kristian has blessed the global church for over 15 years. “By Faith” stands as a reminder that even in our darkest nights, the light of Christ can overcome if we but trust in Him. Its origins in a place of fear only testify more to the power of choosing faith over fear.

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