Words from the Heart for Sunday March 28th, 2021
They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting, “Hosanna!” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Blessed is the King of Israel!”
John 12:13 (NIV)
Back in 2014, Canadian Hockey Fans saved the US National Anthem. Well, they saved the singing of it. During a Nashville Predators game in Toronto, the microphone quit working in the middle of the singing of The Star Spangled Banner. Without missing a beat, the Toronto fans started singing, knowing every word by heart. The next morning on CBS news, the host who showed a video of the singing crowd said, “Thank you Canada, because after ‘O Canada’ I’ve got nothing. I wouldn’t know what to do.”
If you ask people what the definition of the Hebrew word Hosanna means, most would respond “praise the Lord.” That is often how the word is used, but it really means “Please save us!” That is the real cry of the people on the first Palm Sunday. The people of Israel were living under the oppressive heel of the Roman Empire at the time, and longed to be free from that bondage. This was not the first time the Israelis had faced such a situation. They had lived in slavery in Egypt and had been taken into exile by the Babylonians. They longed for once-and-for-all freedom. What they didn’t realize was that what they really needed was freedom from the bondage of sin. This had kept them enslaved – them and every other human being who had ever lived. And Jesus would answer that cry for salvation in just a few days. Without even knowing it, when days later they would turn on Jesus and cry, “crucify Him!” they were sending Jesus to accomplish what He had come to earth for – to be their Redeemer. His death provided freedom for them – and for you.
These have been words from the heart.