The Word of Grace Devotion for the Week of April 10, 2017
Mark 11:9, “Hosanna in the highest!"
Beloved, we often sing the word “Hosanna” as we praise our Savior but what does “Hosanna,” mean? First of all Hosanna is mentioned in three different Gospels, Matthew 21:9, 15; Mark 11:9, 10; and, John 12:13.
We also know that the NT was first written in Greek, and the OT was first written in Hebrew. Wherever the word "hosanna" occurs in the NT, do you know what the Greek word is? Yes! It's "hosanna." All the English translators did was use English letters (h-o-s-a-n-n-a) to make the sound of a Greek word. It was transliterated.
Now, if we look in a Greek dictionary to find what it means, we find that it is really not originally a Greek word. The men who wrote the NT in Greek did the same thing to a Hebrew word that our English translators did to the Greek word: they just used Greek letters to make the sound of a Hebrew phrase. Our English word "hosanna" comes from a Greek word "hosanna" which comes from a Hebrew phrase hoshiya na. Hence, hosanna is a twice-transliterated word!
That Hebrew phrase, hoshiya na, is found one solitary place in the whole OT, Psalm 118:25, where it means, "Save, please!" It is a cry to God for help. However, throughout the years there has been a shift in meaning to the phrase, hoshiya na. Over the centuries the phrase hoshiya na stopped being a cry for help in the ordinary language of the Jews. Instead it became a shout of hope and exultation. It used to mean, "Save, please!" But gradually, it came to mean, "Salvation! Salvation! Salvation has come!"
Hence "Hosanna in the highest!" means, "Let all the angels in heaven join the song of praise. Salvation! Salvation! Let the highest heaven sing the song!"
So when we sing "Hosanna" now, let's make it very personal. Let's make it our praise and our confidence. The Son of David has come. He has saved us from guilt and fear and hopelessness. Salvation! Salvation belongs to our God and to the Son! Hosanna! Hosanna in the highest!
I pray that you will have a blessed week! I love you and I will be praying for you!
In Jesus’ Strong Love