Children, Go Where I Send Thee

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Children, Go Where I Send Thee
Genre Christmas, spiritual
Language English

"Children, Go Where I Send Thee" is a traditional African-American spiritual song,[1] as well as a cumulative song. This song is also known as "The Holy Baby" or "Born in Bethlehem." There are many versions of this song, each giving a Biblical meaning to the numbers mentioned.

One for the little bitty baby (Jesus).
Two for Paul and Silas.
Three for the three men riding (Biblical Magi); or the Hebrew children, in some versions.
Four for the four knocking on the door (Four Evangelists).
Five for the Five that came back alive; or Gospel preachers
Six for the six that never got fixed.
Seven for the seven that all went to Heaven
Eight for the eight that stood at the gate.
Nine for the nine that stood in the line.
Ten for the Ten Commandments.
Eleven for the eleven deriders.
Twelve for the Twelve Apostles.

This song is often performed as a Christmas carol, and has been recorded by Kenny Rogers with Home Free, Joe and Eddie, Fred Waring and his Pennsylvanians, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Nina Simone, Natalie Merchant, The Weavers, The Kingston Trio, the Blind Boys of Alabama, Peter, Paul and Mary, Ricky Skaggs, Ralph Stanley, The Burns Sisters, Mandisa, Johnny Cash, Mahalia Jackson, Tennessee Ernie Ford, Audra McDonald, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Scala & Kolacny Brothers, Odetta, Hall and Oates, REO Speedwagon, Kenny Burrell, Nick Lowe, Ledisi, Colin James & The Little Big Band, and Clara Ward.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Lyrics and meanings for "Children, Go Where I Send Thee"" (PDF). Mount Mitchell United Methodist Church. Retrieved 21 December 2015.