1) Creation. God created the world and everything in it - and it was good. His creation of man and woman in His image was very good. Whatever ills we see in the world, we cannot blame God. We cannot justly accuse Him or attack His character. A good God made a good world. He could not do otherwise.
2) Fall. God created man in His image - including a free will. God didn't have to create, to reveal, to love ... He chose to do so. God has a free will so creatures made in His image - man and woman, not the animals - had to have a free will. Sadly, they chose to use that will to rebel, to reject, to believe a lie. Sin and death entered the world.
3) Redemption. Amazingly and beautifully, God had a plan. Woven into the story of fall is the story of redemption. Blood-stained garments of animal skin to clothe the fallen couple, when their man-made garments of leaves were insufficient. A future Victor who would crush Satan's head. The assurance that life would continue through future generations.
4) Restoration. So often I think this is the one we miss. God not only offers redemption for all who will embrace it - He restores what is lost. Ultimately that will be in the new heavens and new earth. But even now, where He redeems, He restores. Broken relationships healed. Broken promises fulfilled, Broken people made whole. Broken dreams renewed. Ever wonder why we are so fascinated with home improvements, makeovers, dramatic turnarounds? The Great Commission and the Great Commandment invite us to be part of the biggest restoration project in the world.
I don't know why this simple outline came to me this morning - truths I know deeply. I just had this picture in my mind of someone ready to rail against God, being interrupted with these truths just as He interrupted me years ago.
"Is it any wonder they call it Amazing Grace?" (Geron Davis)