Concerning God’s facts, although we cannot find the word facts in the Scriptures, yet in God’s work we find many accomplished facts. In other words, facts are God’s accomplished work.
Facts Are the Accomplished Works
In the Old Testament God promised that the Lord Jesus would be born of a virgin (Isa. 7:14). Then, “when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, come of a woman, come under law, that He might redeem those under law, that we might receive the sonship” (Gal. 4:4-5). Thus, the promise in Isaiah that “a virgin shall conceive and bear a son” has come true, has become a fact. The crucifixion of the Lord Jesus is also a fact. He offered Himself once for all and accomplished eternal redemption (Heb. 9:12). Since this is a fact, no one need ask the Lord to die again for us and redeem us from our sins.
The coming of the Holy Spirit is also a fact forever accomplished. Since this is so, no one need ask again for the Holy Spirit to come. (This refers to the fact of the coming of the Holy Spirit, not to the individual experience of the coming of the Holy Spirit.)
Moreover, God has accomplished many other things through Christ. The Scriptures reveal that all things pertaining to life and godliness have been accomplished in Christ. For example, Ephesians 1:3 says, “Who hath blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.” Verse 4 continues with the words, “Even as…,” and this sentence lasts until verse 14, according to the original text. Hence, we see that all the things mentioned in these verses are all the spiritual blessings referred to in verse 3. This also explains 2 Peter 1:3: “Seeing that his divine power hath granted unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness.” All these are in Christ. They are facts which have already been accomplished.
With regard to God’s promises, if we do not ask concerning them, or if we do not fulfill the conditions, we may not obtain them; the promises may become void as far as we are concerned. But concerning God’s facts, even though we do not ask, He will still fulfill them in us. They are facts; therefore, we do not need to ask concerning them. (This refers to God’s facts themselves, not to our individual experiences.)
God has never asked us to do anything in order to obtain His facts. All He requires is that we simply believe. There may be a delay with God’s promise, but God’s facts can never be late. We can never say that we have received God’s facts and then say that we need to wait a few years for God to give them to us. What God has accomplished and what He has already given to us in Christ can never be postponed to some future time. If God delays His giving to us, it is a contradiction to fact.
Consider two examples. In Ephesians 2:4-6 we read: “But God, being rich in mercy because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in offenses, made us alive together with Christ…and raised us up together and seated us together in the heavenlies in Christ Jesus.” There are three “withs” and two “mades” in this verse. Are the things mentioned here God’s promises or God’s facts? God’s Word tells us that these are all facts. It is God who has made us alive together with Christ, and it is God who has raised us up with Christ and seated us in the heavenly places with Christ. These are all accomplished facts. Since this is so, we ought to praise and thank God. We ought to take an attitude towards Satan that we have been raised up together and that we have ascended together with Christ. We should not take an attitude of hope that we may be raised up or that we may ascend. Our attitude should be one which indicates that we have been raised up, that we have ascended. We must know that there is not one of the Lord’s people who has not received a life of resurrection and ascension. If we consider that this life can only be obtained by our asking for it, we do not know what God has accomplished. God has given us in Christ all that pertains to life and godliness. We do not need to ask; we only need to claim. Hallelujah, this glorious fact, this accomplished fact, this fact which Christ has accomplished, has been given to us by God in Christ!
The second example is found in Romans 6:6 which says, “Knowing this, that our old man has been crucified with Him that the body of sin might be made of none effect, that we should no longer serve sin as slaves.” This verse shows us three things: (1) sin, (2) the old man, and (3) the body of sin. Sin is that very nature of sin which rules in us (Rom. 6:14; 7:17). The old man is our self which likes to listen to sin. The body of sin is our body which is the puppet of sin. Our body is that which actually commits sins. Sin rules in us and by the old man controls our body to make it commit sins. The old man represents all that is of Adam and inclines toward sin. It is this old man which listens to sin and directs the body to commit sin. Perhaps some will think that in order for man not to sin, the root of sin must be plucked out. Others may think that for man not to sin, he must painstakingly suppress his body. These are men’s thoughts; what God has done is completely different. God did not deal with the root of sin; neither did He deal with our body. What He dealt with was our old man. “Our old man has been crucified with Him” (Rom. 6:6). Just as our Lord Jesus was crucified on the cross, in like manner our old man has been crucified with Him. This is a fact. It is a fact which God has accomplished in Christ.
The phrase, “that the body of sin might be made of none effect” may also be rendered, “that the body of sin may become unemployed.” Because our old man has been crucified with Christ, the body of sin has become unemployed. Although the nature of sin is still present and active and still comes to tempt us, the old man who has been utilized by sin has been crucified with Christ. Therefore, sin can no longer be our master; we have been freed from sin. However, someone may look at himself and think that because he is still weak and still sins, he needs to ask God again to give him grace, and to work again to root out sin, that he may be delivered from sin. Someone else may think that Christ has been crucified, but that his old man has not been crucified. He may therefore ask God to crucify his old man. The result is that the more he asks God to crucify his old man, the more his old man seems to be active, exercising dominion over him. What is the reason for this? It is because some are only acquainted with God’s promise but do not know God’s fact. Perhaps they take God’s fact as God’s promise, treating God’s fact in the same way they treat His promises. God says that their old man has been crucified with Christ, but they think that God’s promise is that He will crucify their old man. Therefore, they continue to ask God to crucify their old man. Whenever they commit sin, they feel that their old man has not been crucified, and they ask God once again to crucify their old man. Whenever they fall into temptation, they think that their old man has not been completely dealt with by God. For this reason they feel they need to ask God to deal with their old man. They do not know the fact that their old man has been crucified with Christ, that this is an accomplished fact and is different from a promise. Therefore, they continue to beg. The result is that they make no progress, only continuing to cry out, “O wretched man that I am!” (Rom. 7:24).
We must realize that Romans 6:6 is a basic experience for every one who belongs to the Lord. We must ask the Spirit of the Lord to give us the revelation so that we may see that our old man has been crucified with Christ. Then, based upon the Word of God, we will be able to believe that we are dead indeed to sin (Rom. 6:11). Although at times the temptation will come and cause us to feel that our old man is not dead, still we believe what God has accomplished more than we believe our feeling and experience. Once we see that the fact is a fact, the experience will spontaneously follow. However, we need to realize that it is not because we believe, that God’s fact becomes real, but because God’s fact is real, therefore, we believe.
Faith means that since God says our old man has been crucified with Christ, we also say that our old man has been crucified with Christ. It is a fact that our old man has been crucified, a fact which God has accomplished in Christ. God cannot do any more than He has already done. We cannot do any more than believe that God’s Word is true. Therefore, what is needed is not for us to ask God to do something, but for us to believe what God has already done. Whenever we believe God’s facts, the experience automatically follows. Fact, faith, and experience—this is the order which God has ordained. This great principle in the spiritual life must be remembered.
Some Principles concerning God’s Facts
From what we have seen in the previous examples there are the following principles: (1) We need to discover what God’s fact is. For this, revelation from the Holy Spirit is necessary. (2) Once we see what God’s fact is, we need to hold on to God’s Word and believe that we are just as God’s Word says. We need to believe that just as God’s fact says, so we are. (3) We need by faith on one hand to praise God that we are this way; on the other hand we need to act and manifest that we are such. (4) Whenever temptation or trial comes to us, we must believe that God’s Word and His fact are more dependable than our feelings. We need only to fully believe God’s Word; then God will be responsible to give us the experience. If we pay attention to our experience first, we shall fail and not have any experience. Our responsibility is to believe God’s fact; God’s responsibility is to grant us the experience. If we believe God’s fact, our spiritual life will grow every day. (5) Fact requires our faith, for faith is the only way by which the fact may be realized in our experience. God’s fact is in Christ; therefore, we must be in Christ in order to enjoy the fact which God has accomplished in Christ. When we are united with Christ, we shall experience the fact which God has accomplished in Christ. We must remember that when we were saved, we were united with Christ and were put into Christ (1 Cor. 1:30; Gal. 3:27; Rom. 6:3). But many, though they are in Christ, do not abide in Christ. Since they do not stand by faith upon the position which God has given them in Christ, they lose the effect which God’s fact has toward them. Therefore, though we are already in Christ, we also need to abide in Christ. By this means, God’s fact will become our experience and will continue to be manifested through us.
The Need of Seeing
We have mentioned repeatedly that God’s fact is something which He has already accomplished and that we do not need to ask Him to do anything. However, if we have not seen God’s fact as fact, we need to ask God to give us revelation, to give us light, that we may see. It is the spirit of wisdom and revelation that will cause us to know (Eph. 1:17-18). We can ask for such a spirit. What we ask for is the vision. We do not ask that God will do that very thing again, but that He may show us that He has already accomplished that thing. We must be clear about this difference.
Following are some further examples to clarify this matter.
(1) A sister, before she had seen the fact of being in Christ, thought that she had to exercise her own effort to work herself into Christ, yet she did not know how to do it. One day upon hearing the word, “But of him are ye in Christ Jesus” (1 Cor. 1:30), she saw in her inner being that God had already put her into Christ and that she did not need to work herself in anymore.
(2) Some children of God, before seeing the fact that “our old man has been crucified with Christ,” either used their own effort to crucify their old man, or asked God to do it. The result was that the more they tried to crucify their old man, the more lively the old man seemed to be. The more they asked God to crucify their old man, the more confused they became. Then one day God opened their eyes and revealed to them that He had already crucified their old man with Christ. At that time they realized how foolish their action and prayer had been.
(3) A certain sister was not clear that the outpouring of the Holy Spirit is already a fact. One night she closed her door and read Acts 2. While reading this portion of the Word, she asked God to give her a revelation. God opened her eyes and showed her three things in this chapter: (a) that Christ has been exalted to the right hand of God, and having received the promise of the Holy Spirit from the Father, has poured down the Holy Spirit (v. 33); (b) God has made Him both Lord and Christ (v. 36); (c) this promise of receiving the Holy Spirit is for the Israelites and for their children, and also for those who are afar off (v. 39). She saw that it is a fact that the Holy Spirit has been poured out. Since she was one who had repented and had been baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, she was included in those who were “afar off.” She realized, therefore, that she had a part in the promise, that is, that she had a part in what is mentioned in verse 38, “Ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” When she saw this, she was full of joy and could not cease to praise the Lord.
Therefore, we strongly emphasize again that concerning God’s fact we do not need to ask God to do that thing again; we need only ask God to show us that He has already done that thing. We need not ask God to put us now into Christ, but we do need to ask God to show us that He has already put us into Christ. We do not need to ask God to crucify our old man, but we do need to ask God to show us that He has crucified us with Christ. Neither are we asking God to pour down the Holy Spirit from the heavens; rather, we are asking God to show us that the Holy Spirit has already been poured down. (In Acts 1:13-14 we read that the Apostles with several women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers, continued steadfastly in prayer with one accord. Acts 2:1 says that on the day of Pentecost the disciples were all together in one place, because at that time the Holy Spirit had not yet been poured out. But Acts 8:15-17 clearly shows that Peter and John prayed for the Samaritans who had believed in the Lord, and laid hands upon them that they might receive the Holy Spirit. They did not pray for the Holy Spirit to be poured out from heaven. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit from heaven is a fact, while the coming down of the Holy Spirit upon individuals is an experience.)
We do need to ask God to show us that His facts are facts. Whenever we have the inner revelation, we can spontaneously believe and then spontaneously have the experience. We say again that we may indeed inquire of God, but what we need to ask Him for is the enlightening of our eyes to give us revelation and light that we may really see something concerning God’s facts. (The New Covenant, pg.19-26)