WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
APRIL 1, 2021
TOPIC: HOSANNA, SALVATION HAS COME!
BY T. O. BANSO
“Then the multitudes who went before and those who followed cried out, saying: ‘Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD! Hosanna in the highest!” (Matthew 21:9 New King James Version).
The Jews had always looked forward to the promised Messiah. “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey, a colt, the foal of a donkey” (Zechariah 9:9 New King James Version).
The people’s expectations were in order but they were wrong about the nature of the Messiah. The Messiah God wanted to send was not the Messiah they were expecting. God wanted to send someone He had anointed and empowered to deliver His people and establish His kingdom, not a political Messiah. But the Jews were expecting a political Messiah that would defeat their enemies, deliver them in particular from Roman rule and establish a government of peace and prosperity.
Even the chosen disciples of Jesus had the same expectation. They erroneously thought that everything Jesus was doing would lead to a political action that would deliver the nation from Roman domination. They must have been disappointed when Jesus was arrested, condemned, and crucified without achieving this.
Perhaps the apostles were thinking that following His resurrection, He still had another chance of delivering Israel as the Messiah. However, Jesus did nothing of such as He prepared to ascend to heaven. Acts 1:6 says, “Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, ‘Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?’” (New King James Version). Their question revealed their mindset regarding the promised Messiah.
Jesus answered them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:7-8 New King James Version). Jesus was concerned about spiritual things; His disciples were concerned about politics! By His answer, He changed their focus from the earthly kingdom to the kingdom of heaven. Jesus was not a politician; He was the Saviour.
When the angel told Joseph that Mary’s conception was of the Holy Spirit, he told him that His name would be called JESUS, for He would save His people from their sins (Mathew 1:21). He didn’t say He would save His people from Roman rule.
The father of John the Baptist, Zacharias, prophesied at his circumcision, “That we should be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us” (Luke 1:71 New King James Version). The Jews must have interpreted that to mean deliverance from Roman domination rather than seeing the enemies spoken of as Satan, sin, death and other consequences of sin.
As Jesus made His triumphant entry to Jerusalem before His arrest and crucifixion, the multitude also expressed the common expectation of a political Messiah and their belief that at last, the Messiah had come. However, they missed it because Jesus, throughout His earthly ministry, didn’t fight the Roman government. His attack was against the established religious institution that had put much burden on the people. Jesus offered the people rest. His teachings were not along the line of revolt against Rome.
Matthew 21:9 says, “Then the multitudes who went before and those who followed cried out, saying: ‘Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD! Hosanna in the highest!” (New King James Version). I want you to pay attention to that word Hosanna. Some Bible translations do not use the word. The New Living Translation, for example, uses Praise God instead of Hosanna.
Hosanna is a Greek word of Hebrew origin. It is from two Hebrew words. The first is “yasha”, which means to save, to be saved, or to be delivered. The second is “na”, which means I (we) pray, now, please. It is used in entreaty or exhortation. Hosanna, according to Easton’s Bible Dictionary, means Save now! or Save, we beseech. Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary says the word Hosanna was associated with Jewish hopes for deliverance by a political hero.
When the people shouted Hosanna to the Son of David, they were welcoming Jesus into Jerusalem in the hope that their political deliverer had arrived. Their shout of Hosanna was an exclamation of joyful praise to God for sending the Messiah. They invoked the blessing of God on Him as He rode on the colt.
Although Jesus received the people’s praise, He didn’t receive it as a political hero. He knew His kingdom was not of this world. He was not a political Saviour: He was a spiritual Saviour. He came peacefully into Jerusalem and there was no violence or breakdown of law and order. He is the Prince of Peace.
Mark 11:9-10 says, “Then those who went before and those who followed cried out, saying: ‘Hosanna! ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’ Blessed is the kingdom of our father David that comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” (New King James Version).
Did you see again the cry of Hosanna? Hosanna in the highest is similar to “Glory to God in the highest” uttered in praise of God by the multitude of the heavenly host that joined the angel that came to announce the birth of Jesus to the shepherds in the night (Luke 2:13-14).
Also, the book of John records Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem and the multitude’s shout of Hosanna: “The next day a great multitude that had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him, and cried out: ‘Hosanna! ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’ The King of Israel!’” (John 12:12-13 New King James Version).
Furthermore, the book of Matthew records that after Jesus had cleansed the Temple of God in Jerusalem and healed the lame and the blind in the Temple, the children also shouted, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” (Mathew 21:15 New King James Version). The chief priests and the scribes were angry and called Jesus’ attention to what the children were saying.
They must have expected Jesus to stop them. Rather, Jesus said, “Yes. Have you never read, ‘Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants You have perfected praise’?” (Verse 16 New King James Version). He was quoting Psalm 8:2.
Jesus accepted the praise of the multitude, including the children, as the Messiah although He was not the type of Messiah they expected. Hitherto, Jesus didn’t reveal Himself publicly to the Jews as the Messiah. But on this occasion, He presented Himself as the Messiah.
In a similar scenario in Luke 19:38-40, when the Pharisees asked Jesus to rebuke His disciples who were saying, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the LORD!’ Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”, Jesus answered them that if they should keep silent, the stones would immediately cry out.
The shout of Hosanna by the multitudes and the children during Jesus’ triumphal entry was taken from Psalm 118:25-26, which says, “Save now, I pray, O LORD; O LORD, I pray, send now prosperity. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD! We have blessed you from the house of the LORD” (New King James Version).
Did you see the phrase Save now? The Hebrew word for it is Hosanna. The Hebrew word for “save” is “yasha” and the Hebrew word for “now” is “na.” These are the same Hebrew words that form Hosanna. The Jews were familiar with Psalm 118:25-26 as they recited it at the feast of tabernacles. It was a routine recitation at the feast.
Thus, as Jesus entered Jerusalem that day, they shouted some words in Psalm 118:25-26 which they had always recited. They saw in Jesus the fulfilment of the salvation they had been crying for and they shouted Hosanna as an exclamation of joyful praise to God.
As we have seen, the shout of Hosanna was originally a call for God to “save now” or “save, we pray”, but the meaning had changed in the days of Jesus to an exclamation of joyful praise to God. Even today, with salvation already accomplished for humanity by the death and resurrection of Jesus, we are in a better position to shout Hosanna. Salvation has come and we can praise and thank God for delivering us from our sins and hell.
Thank You, Jesus, for the salvation from sin and its attendant consequences. Hosanna, salvation has come!
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto you today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and resurrected the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank you, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, thank You for loving the world so much that You sent Jesus to die for the sins of the world. Lord Jesus, thank You for the work of salvation that you accomplished by Your death and resurrection. Holy Spirit, I pray that, through Your ministry, the world will be convicted of its sin, and of God’s righteousness, and of the coming judgment.
(For about 600 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit: www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President, Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
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