by Rich Remsberg
University of Illinois Press, 2000
Paper: 978-0-252-06943-7 | Cloth: 978-0-252-02521-1
Library of Congress Classification HV6489.I38R45 2000
Dewey Decimal Classification 277.30829

Riders for God takes us into a world generally inaccessible to outsiders, one situated at the crossroads of two seemingly incongruous realms: motorcycle gangs and Spirit-filled Christianity.
Founded by a former biker and located in southern Indiana, the Unchained Gang is a group of former outlaw bikers, ex-convicts, and recovering addicts who are now born-again Christians. Although they have given up drugs, alcohol, tobacco, and violence they have kept their motorcycles--which they consider to be anointed--and use them as tools in their witness of the word of God as they understand it. The Unchained Gang is an outreach ministry, going into prisons and jails, biker rallies, and other places where people on the fringe are often ignored by other churches and the rest of society.
Combining powerful photographic images with gang members' first-person testimonies, Rich Remsberg shows the ironic juxtaposition of tattoos, leather vests, and the iconography of the biker world with the Christian practices of Bible study, speaking in tongues, and praying at an altar. He explores the lives of men and women who have redirected the extreme nature of their former ways.
Through their own powerful stories, they explain how the addictions and uncontrollable violence that once shaped their lives have given way to dramatic worship and zealous ministry.
An afterword by Colleen McDannell situates the Unchained Gang's
interpretation of Christian living in the larger constellation of pentecostal, born-again, fundamentalist, and mainstream churches.

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