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Gate church •
To establish a place on earth where people can encounter the God of Heaven.
Our New Name—Church at the Gate
Jesus is the gate ("I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture." John 10:9) and he said he would build the church ("And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it." Matthew 16:18). The church must be built on Him and by Him.
Our Slogan—Step Into The Promised Life!
This is an invitation to step into the sufficiency of Christ, an invitation to step into a burden-free zone, and an invitation to step up into a place of emotional abundance.
With many "gates" to choose from, we chose an old field gate for our logo. It seemed to say "South Dakota" and be fitting regionally. Very subtly set in the gate is a cross capturing the fact that Jesus is "the Gate".
Why a gate?
A gate is a point of access into and out of a city. In ancient times, city gates were the focal points of attack—take the gate and you take the city. They were the gathering places where announcements and declarations were made. The city elders met and deliberated there. Justice was meted out at the gate. The markets were at the gates, not the residences. Gates were filters allowing good in and keeping bad out. Today, highways and airports, waterways and railways, universities and corporations, bookstores and bars, newspapers and radio/TV stations are points of access into the soul of a city. This church is called to be a gatekeeper!
What is a "gate" church?
The story of Jacob's ladder in Genesis 28:10-22 forms a framework for establishing a "gate" church—a place on earth where people can encounter the God of Heaven. Below are 14 points taken from a recent message on this key passage and put in language that will serve to define our ministry in the days ahead.
A "gate" church...
1. is a place of divine appointment. Vs. 11
2. is located under an open heaven. Vs. 12
3. is a place to flop and find forgiveness. Vs. 11
4. is a place where Jesus is Lord and God is high and lifted up. Vs. 13
5. is intergenerational, building and blessing families. Vss. 13-14
6. grows in quantity and quality. Vs. 14
7. has a sphere of influence and authority. Vss. 13-14
8. gets a word from God. Vss. 13-15
9. enjoys a sustained supernatural atmosphere. Vs. 15
10. is a place of awakening and revelation. Vs. 16
11. has anointed worship—a healthy fear of God and a child-like sense of awe. Vss. 16-17
12. changes the spiritual climate of the entire city. Vs. 19
13. is a place of covenant. Vs. 22
14. gives back—it's a tithing church. Vs. 22
What We Believe Detailed Statement of Faith, Distinctive Affirmations and Controversies
We believe the Bible to be the inspired, infallible, and authoritative Word of God. The Holy Spirit inspired the writers of the Old and New Testaments pointing to Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world.
We believe that there is One God, eternally revealed to the world in the Father, the Son, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit. By Him were all things created. We believe that God sent His Son, Jesus Christ to redeem all of mankind. Jesus Christ was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life on this earth, performed many undeniable miracles, was crucified for our sins, buried and was raised from the dead for our justification. By the name of Jesus Christ, and His name only, can mankind be saved. Jesus Christ sits at the Right Hand of the Father and will return personally in power and glory to receive His Church unto Himself.
We believe that mankind is sinful by nature and will perish without the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ as revealed in His Gospel. That God wishes that no one should perish, but that all would come to this saving knowledge through the preaching of the Gospel to a lost and hopeless world.
We believe in the multi-faceted work of the Holy Spirit to bring conviction of sin, revelation of the truth of the Gospel of Christ, drawing of the sinner to God, adoption of mankind into the Body of Christ through regeneration, and the distribution and administration of the Gifts and Fruit of the Holy Spirit in the believer's life. Jesus Christ is the "baptizer with the Holy Spirit" for the empowerment of the Church through the Baptism with the Holy Spirit.
We believe in the local church as a place where believers gather together for edification, teaching from the Word of God, and ministry to and through each other according to their spiritual gift. The local church provides identity to its members as well as encouragement, interdependence, fellowship, correction and discipline.
Church at the Gate, originally named Harvest Covenant Church, was
conceived in the early months of 1994 in the hearts of a handful of
people who were passionate about seeing people come to Christ. The
search was on for a "church planter" who would come to give shape and
direction to this budding vision to start a new church, a "different
kind of church." Pastor Steve and his family moved to Sioux Falls in
June, 1994 and our first "preview" service was held August 5, 1994 at
Oscar Howe Elementary School. That first fall, we sought to gain
momentum for our much publicized March 5, 1995 launch Sunday (it snowed
nine inches that day and many other churches in town cancelled
services!) Not to be deterred, the first couple of years were spent
aggressively reaching out through strategic events and personal invites.
Over the next five years, we moved from Oscar Howe Elementary School to
Memorial Middle School, to Roosevelt High School and then camped for a
couple years in a small church building on Marion Road. Our present
West Campus facility was completed in 2001 and we are currently adding
an East Wing expansion to that building while simultaneously seeking
land to establish a ministry presence on Sioux Falls' north side.
These "moves" are what was visible from the "outside." On the "inside", God was moving.
In 1996, God laid it on our hearts to take prayer seriously and today
fasting and prayer have become our passion and privilege. Using Ezekiel
37:9-10, we began to summon the wind (the Spirit) on behalf of the dead that
they'd come alive—a vast army. God has powerfully answered this
prayer! With the implementation of the Alpha Course and the "Holy
Spirit" weekend in 1998, the Winds of the Spirit have mightily graced
our church. Deep in our DNA has been the mandate to be a "regional
mission outpost" which has manifest itself over the years in
collaborative partnerships with our churches in Sioux Falls to see the
transformation of our city, the planting of additional congregations,
and the networking with our churches statewide for Kingdom impact. Our
first church plant was in 1999 when we sent 32 people to Brandon to
establish Living Springs Covenant Church. There is a strong sense of
certainty here that God has called us to wash the feet of the Native
American in our state and seek reconciliation such that the land would
Believing that strategic mission assignments take strategic leadership,
in recent years we have focused on multiplying leaders and even
restructuring our entire church government from a congregational model
to an apostolic model (which means strong pastoral leadership surrounded
by a strong presbytery of elders). Such changes were very instrumental
in us continuing to fulfill our God-given mission assignment but they
were incompatible with our denominational affiliation. In February,
2005, we officially became a non-denominational church affiliated with
both the Association of Life-giving Churches and the Association of
Related Churches. Both are non-governmental networks of like-minded
churches. This affiliation change created a window of opportunity to
change our church name to more reflect the fact that God has called our
church to be a "gate church"—a place on earth where people can
encounter the God of Heaven. Our slogan is our passion—we want to
encourage people to "STEP INTO THE PROMISED LIFE!"
Lots and lots of "Life Groups" and adding additional "services," both
worship services and things like starting GO KIDS! Daycare & Learning
Center, in addition to adding additional off-site venues throughout
our city and region, are the ways we see ourselves growing and reaching
more people in the days ahead.
Web Site history
The original website of harvest-church.org was developed by Tina Miller in October of 1999. It was replaced with churchatthegate.com in mid-August of 2005. The harvest-church.org domain name was given to Harvest Church of the Nazarene, Conway, Arkansas in June of 2006.
Association of Related Churches
is an organization of pastors and churches that focuses on building strong relationships between pastors and ministry leaders, available to encourage, provide guidance, and ministry development for pastors across the U.S.
Dan Harwell, Senior Pastor
Dennis White, Associate Pastor
Jared Dupert, Youth/Young Adult Pastor
Nancy Thompson, Children's Pastor
Sabrina Johnson, Nursery Coordinator
Jeremy Iversen, Worship Leader
Matt Tims, Technical Coordinator/Worship Leader Assistant
Kathleen Harwell, Prayer Coordinator/Pastoral Care/Children's Ministry
Terri Monshaugen, Daycare Director
Regina Schwebach, Financial Administrator
Sheryl Horan, Office Manager
Lance Johnson, Security
Carter Nesbitt, Church Custodian/Maintenance
Details and Photos
No connection to Church at the Gate, North Sioux City, SD