We have learned to imagine the scene so well: Jesus enters Jerusalem on the back of a donkey as the gathering crowds wave palm fronds and shout Hosanna! We hear them extolling praises as he enters the city.
Yet the word that comes to us through Greek transliteration as hosanna is not a word of praise. It’s a prayer, cried out in Hebrew as hoshi’ah-nah, which means “please save.” We find it in the lines of Psalm 118:
Save us, we beseech you, O Lord!And, skipping two lines:
O Lord, we beseech you, give us success!
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the
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