+4 votes
in Arts & Humanities by

True, there are few company towns, and I don't think any job pays in company script, but some people owe their soles to the bank/credit card company. Will you have to ask St Peter not to call you due to debts??

3 Answers

+4 votes

Edit: oops, sorry, I didn't see that you made the very same reference. :)


Its ok, the volume on yours is much better than on mine. )

+4 votes

A great song indeed, telling about the poor situation of the coal miners.

Oh, and I think that Saint Peter will rather look at your heart, than at your debts.

This song reminds me, somehow, of gospel songs and their rhythm, namely my preferred one (telling about the poor situation of the Israelian slaves in Egypt), i.e. "Go Down Moses":

Maybe that I should also mention "Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen"

or "When the Saints Go Marching In":

And Louis Armstrong's interpretations were and still are exceptional!


@ Marianne,

The historicity of the Exodus has been questioned for some years now.  It seems at least that the numbers involved were much smaller than the 600,000 men plus women and children stated in the Bible.


Yes, T(h)ink, no real proof for the "Exodus" was found, and we know since long that archaeological findings do often not agree with biblical records (Old Testament), which base mainly on oral transmission. And tradition involves many myths, including superstitions, and various interpretations.


Still, we all like legends, and the gospel songs are really nice.


Saint Peter may look at your heart, but when that song was sung, no man would even think of leaving debts to his heirs. He would work forever rather than let someone else pay.


Yes, Marianne, and here is another excellent spiritual.

One thing I never understood about the wheels in this song... it seems to me that the big wheel should turn by the grace of God, and the little one by faith, rather than vice-versa.  :unsure:

Edit:  Here is a version that gets it right.  :)

And here is another. :)



I am sure that quite a few honest, devoted people would accept to do that, if they could.

But all of us are indebted to some other people, like parents, relatives, friends, mentors, teachers, etc., who cared for us, fed us, educated us, supported us and gave us the opportunity to become responsible adults, and we cannot always pay those back who cared most for our welfare.

If coming back to more material matters, there are many kinds of debtors:




and Saint Peter is rather referring to sins and crimes, than to "debts" as a consequence of poverty, diseases, handicaps, disasters, wars, etc.

Doesn't the Lord's Prayer refer to forgiving?

According to Matthew:

'Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.'"




It is true that the children and successors must often pay for the debts, sins, crimes or even for the unfortunate loss of parents, predecessors, kins, etc.


T(h)ink - yes, following your info, I could compare the two versions about the little and the big wheel.

The three interpretations are excellent; each has its own "charisma".



Yes, Marianne, they are all excellent, but I think artistically, I like the first one (by the Charioteers) best. :)


Yes, T(h)ink, their voices are exceptional.


+1 vote

Dear Korvo,

First of all No, I do not owe a single cent to anyone in this world. I was born at the end of the Great Depression, and raised by people who lived through that...and debt is something you avoid at all cost.

However, here in the US, for the first time in almost ever, I have read that the current generations are, overall, financially less well off than their parents/grandparents...and they carry a huge debt load. This is believed by some to jeopardize the US economy, overall.


Not me either.

You are the only one who understood what I meant when I asked the question. Seems the fact that I mentioned St Peter, some thought this was a religious question.. But all answers are welcomed :)


:) !

...true, but your question did generate some interesting discussion, Korvo...