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Palm Sunday is the day we remember the “triumphal entry” of Jesus into Jerusalem, one week before His resurrection, and following his glorious miracle of raising Lazarus from the dead. It is referred to as Palm Sunday because of the palm branches that were laid on the road as Jesus rode a donkey into Jerusalem.

As Jesus approached this week, He knew what the week held. Yet, in Hebrews 12:2-3 (NKJV) it says, “Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

Jesus endured the cross, despising and ignoring the shame, because of the joy that was set before Him…His joy…the joy of His Father…our joy!

In John 12:12-15 (NKJV), it says, "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!” Then Jesus, when He had found a young donkey, sat on it; as it is written: “Fear not, daughter of Zion; behold, your King is coming, sitting on a donkey’s colt.”

Earlier in that chapter, almost a week before Passover, Jesus attended a dinner. Those in attendance were a newly-resurrected Lazarus; Judas (a thief), and many others. Martha served the dinner, and Mary anointed Jesus’ feet with a very expensive, fragrant oil/ointment/perfume.

People gathered in Jerusalem for the Passover, and flocked to the house in hopes they would see Jesus and Lazarus. The Chief Priests and religious leaders were lurking nearby, and ticked off! They had already been plotting to kill Jesus and now they wanted to kill Lazarus as well.

The people waved the Palm branches (a symbol of Jewish nationalism), and laid them down as Jesus went by on a donkey. (The donkey symbolized the animal of peace vs. the horse, which symbolized of the animal of war). The people cried out, “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!”

The New Testament was written in Greek; the Old Testament was written in Hebrew.
Translators used a practice called “transliteration,” which means to convert a text from one script into another. The word “Hosanna” is not really a Greek word. New Testament writers transliterated this word by using Greek letters to make the sound of a Hebrew phrase: “Hoshiyana.” It actually means, “Save please!” “Save we pray!” It is a cry for help!
Save now, I pray, O LORD; O LORD, I pray, send now prosperity. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD!
(Ps. 118:25-26a NKJV)
Over time, the phrase “Hosanna”/“Hoshiya na” changed from a plea (“Help me please!” “Somebody save me!”) to a confident declaration (“Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!”) It became not just a cry for help but an exclamation of hope and praise! Instead of fear and panic, it became joy, relief, excitement and gratitude!

Some of you today just need to cry out, “Please help!” “Save me!” Some of you need to declare, “Thank you, Jesus…for coming to rescue me!”

Know this: Jesus is on the way! Help is on the way! “Hosannah! Blessed is He Who comes in the name of the Lord!”

Meadowbrook Church
All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author Biography

Tim Gilligan
Web site: Meadowbrook Church Ocala
Tim Gilligan founded Meadowbrook Church of Ocala in 1989 with an urgent desire to minister to the people of Central Florida. Over twenty years later, Tim continues to practically and passionately share the uncompromised truth of God’s word. He earned his BA in Theology and Ministry from Sterling College, a Master of Arts in Ministerial Leadership from Southeastern University, and is currently pursuing his Doctor of Ministry from AGTS. He’s authored five books.

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