Dale Sutherland is leaving McLean Bible to become the President of of International Care Ministries. He also will become involved in a New City Church plant in West Falls Church, Virginia. This blog looks at Dale’s legacy the chief among them is his role in theologically flipping McLean Bible with the aid of Mark Dever of Capital Hill Baptist Church. Dale Sutherland will be remembered for being Lon Solomon’s Judas Iscariot.
“Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it whether it exists or not, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedy.“
“Politics is war without bloodshed while war is politics with bloodshed.”
47 While he was still speaking, Judas, one of the Twelve, arrived. With him was a large crowd armed with swords and clubs, sent from the chief priests and the elders of the people. 48 Now the betrayer had arranged a signal with them: “The one I kiss is the man; arrest him.” 49 Going at once to Jesus, Judas said, “Greetings, Rabbi!” and kissed him.
50 Jesus replied, “Do what you came for, friend.”
Matthew 26:47-50 NIV
People praying over Dale Sutherland as he leaves McLean Bible
Dale Sutherland’s June 16, 2019 sermon
Dale Sutherland is leaving McLean Bible and moving on to become the President of International Care Ministries. He gave what appears to be his final sermon on June 16, 2019. This blog listened and attended his sermon to report on his leaving of McLean. Dale is also going to City Light Church a New City church plant in West Fall Church, Virginia where he will be on the servant leadership team. His son-in-law Nate Crew is the lead pastor City Light. This church plant is taking off on September 15, 2019 according to the New City Network. In his June 16 sermon at McLean Bible called, “Hope Shines Through” Dale talked about International Care Ministries and his passion in working with the ultra poor. When the sermon was finished many people gave him a standing ovation and on stage with his brother David Sutherland and some other family members present, people prayed for him as he moves forward in another capacity.
Was Dale Sutherland the “Hooks” of McLean Bible?
Who is Dale Sutherland?
Dale Sutherland was born in Maine as the youngest of three boys. His father struggled with bi-polar disorder. Dale moved around frequently when he was growing up. His father worked for the State Department, then as a VP of a Christian organization, and finally for the United States Immigration Service. Dale claims that he became a Christian in high school. Upon graduation from high school he got a job in Sheraton National Hotel in Arlington, Virginia. He then moved on and began to work in hotel security. He applied to the police academy of and then attended Washington Bible College. He then worked for two years in the police department in Arlington County. He then moved over the to the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia where he worked for 28 years. Dale worked in narcotics as a uniform officer, but in 1993 he moved to the plain clothes unit. This is where Dale thrived, and in the process he worked in undercover and leading squads to take down gangs, bust drug rings. He briefly worked in homicide.
In 2001 Dale accepted the position of the Director of Student Ministries. In time he was asked to become the Outreach Director of McLean Bible, and that request led to him to resign from the D.C. Police Department in August of 2013. Then he would become the Associate Senior Pastor of McLean Bible in 2014. This is how Dale Sutherland described how he entered into that leadership role. “I knew the Senior Pastor, Lon Solomon, but not well. We began discussing the state of McLean Bible, and I had a lot of ideas. I wanted to pray more, give more to missionaries, work harder to make sure we were taking care of our people, and lead through love of the people and the world around us. I wanted to reduce the bureaucracy so we could serve more souls better. Lon was moved by my vision, and the Church’s leadership decided they wanted to bring fresh eyes to the position to help ensure we were serving God’s will. Our size didn’t matter, and neither did our awards and recognition. What matters is having someone who asks God what He wants of us, and then strives day in and day out to pursue that. Lon knew I would throw my whole heart into that mission.” Dale also attended Trinity School of the Bible and picked up a Bachelor’s degree in Bible and Biblical studies. In May of 2019 Dale started his new role as President of International Care Ministries. As Dale moves on and also becomes more involved in City Church, a New City Church plant this blog would like to ask the question. What will Dale Sutherland’s legacy be at McLean Bible?
How Dale was Lon Solomon’s Judas Iscariot and how he Flipped a Church and Enabled Spiritual Abuse of Staff
Dale Sutherland will be remembered for one aspect that is exceptionally dark. He will be known for being Lon Solomon’s Judas Iscariot. Dale will be known for his Svengali swan song in which while he coxed Lon Solomon he allegedly built a business relationship with Mark Dever of Capitol Hill Baptist and worked to hijack and theologically flip a church. This blog doesn’t say that with ease, instead it states it based on information that was obtained in the past. When this blog is written it often hears stories, obtains documents, and accesses information from well placed sources. And that is indeed true in this situation as well. What happened at McLean Bible is that Dale Sutherland worked behind the scenes with Mark Dever. In small intimate staff meetings while Lon Solomon was away Dale Sutherland brought Mark Dever to speak to the church staff about 9 Marks. How big were these staff meetings? About 5 to 9 people were present. As Mark Dever passed out his material this was done behind the back of Lon Solomon. He did not understand that this was transpiring. Then in time Dale convinced Lon Solomon through his conversations that they needed to do more social justice and trim a bloated church staff. Now as I say this I want to be clear, I am not opposed to a church doing social justice work. What I am opposed to is deceit, dishonesty, scheming behind a person’s back and then lying about it. As close to 150 staff was purged, let go, and forced to sign non-disclosure agreements McLean hired a lot of Neo or New Calvinists to take their place. Dale had engaged in deep spiritual abuse in helping to force a lot of staff to leave. Its my understanding that some of the staff experienced physical illness and mental health problems do to the loss of their job at the age many were at. Some like Jim Supp were able to land at other places like Reston Bible. But many others could not find jobs and experienced deep problems. This blog sympathizes with them and if any have the courage to tell their story this blog would be happy to give them a platform. By the time Lon Solomon realized what was happening he was boxed into a corner and he couldn’t do much of anything. A pastor he trusted and promoted turned around and become his Judas Iscariot. Lon Solomon who made McLean Bible his life and mission often stated that due to his personal love of McLean that he would not leave the church and that his body would have to be carried out. In the end who did that? It was Dale Sutherland. His 30 pieces of silver was a Neo-Calvinist church with a super star celebrity pastor of David Platt. You can read the process in the following post called, “Indicators and Warnings of McLean Bible’s Theological Hijacking that Would Culminate with David Platt Becoming the Teaching Pastor: An Overview of the Changes Chronicled by The Wondering Eagle from 2015 Until 2017; Plus What I Believe is Coming Down the Pike.”
Aside from Hijacking a Church What Else Will be Dale’s Legacy?
Dale’s primary legacy will be the flipping of McLean Bible which resulted in that church being placed in the Neo-Calvinist camp. But there is another question that needs to be asked about Dale Sutherland before he leaves McLean. And that deals with a disturbing situation that happened in The Rock Ministries. From what this blog has discerned it sounds like a volunteer allegedly groomed several children for possible sexual abuse. This blog would like to know why didn’t Dale Sutherland promptly go to the Fairfax Police when the situation happened? What does it say when someone who dedicated his career to law enforcement doesn’t refer a possible crime to the police? But it also raised other questions that haunt this blogger. For example as President of International Care Ministries what will Dale Sutherland do when child sexual abuse happens in the missionary field? What will happen if the organization learns of sexual abuse by a missionary in the Philippines or Hong Kong? Will that be handled correctly or will that be covered up? Will the International Care Ministries have sexual abuse problems like the Association of Baptists of World Evangelism did? If Dale or others need to learn about what happened from the Harrisburg, Pennsylvania Baptist missionary organization The New Republic broke the story in, “The Silence of the Lambs” in June of 2017. This blog has never had a high opinion of Dale Sutherland and has found itself writing about the carnage of what transpired at McLean Bible. Its incredibly sad but its something that needs to be documented and written about. But Dale’s legacy at McLean is going to be one of scandal, a church coup that only George Orwell could describe and drama behind the scenes. For those who are refugees from McLean Bible this blog sympathizes with you. You lost your home or your place of work due to an act of injustice.