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The nation’s third-largest denomination—the United Methodist Church is imploding. The issue is over sexual ethics and what defines marriage. The denomination has debated this issue for years, with many of the liberal congregations in the larger cities siding with a revised view of human sexuality. However, conservative congregations have rejected this. And now it is coming to a head. A Florida United Methodist bishop and his liberal allies tried to ordain two openly homosexual clergy in defiance of church law. Now there’s a lawsuit. But an even bigger question is at stake and a lesson for other denominations, and that’s whether God’s word speaks to human sexuality and how we are to conduct our lives or whether we should make up the rules as we go along. This is a question that United Methodists will have to answer.

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