As he was now approaching the path down from the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to praise God joyfully with a loud voice for all the deeds of power that they had seen, saying,
“Blessed is the king
who comes in the name of the Lord!
Peace in heaven,
and glory in the highest heaven!”
We have been in the Wilderness with Jesus since Ash Wednesday. We have been preparing as followers of Christ for what is to come this week. We experienced temptation in the wilderness. We watched at Jesus lamented over the center of human chaos, and we have brought our big questions and doubts to Jesus. We heard how the prodigal Father seeks out his two lost sons. And we have been uncomfortable with Mary’s extravagant act of love to prepare Jesus with perfume and the smell of death
And today, our lenten journey, our lenten wilderness and wanderings have brought us to the gates of Jerusalem shouting Hosanna. We have been calling upon God for deliverance from our oppressors. That word Hosanna, that word which sounds a lot of Halelujah, like praise the Lord does not mean the same thing.
Hosanna means save now.
Save us now God.
Save us from enemies.
Save us from our sufferings.
Save us from all that threatens us.
We know what it is like to need to be saved, to yearn for deliverance.
We pray Hosanna for those who are sick, for those who are broken.
We whisper Hosanna for those at death’s door.
And each week, we sing Hosanna, Blessed is he who comes in the Name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.
We sing Save us Now, and call upon God to come down a meet us.
To meet us in Bread and Wine, to become Body and Blood.
To become our Body and Blood.
To be the Body of Christ that we share in the Lord’s supper.
To become the Body of Christ that we are as the Church.
We sing Hosanna, save us now, because this week more than ever we need to be saved.
Because this week we will meet Jesus in the Lord’s Supper on Maundy Thursday.
And we will be the ones who give Jesus over to be arrested for 30 pieces of silver.
We will be the ones who take up the sword to return violence with violence.
We will be the ones who deny Jesus just before the rooster crows.
And we will be ones who stand helpless at the cross.
We sing Hosanna week after week.
We sing Hosanna today, because we need God to save us from ourselves.
To save us from sin, to save us from death.
We need God to be Hosanna for us. We need to be saved.
And this week God will.
God will enter the city to our rejoicing.
God will share the last meal of criminal sentenced to death with us.
God will hang on the cross for us.
We sing Hosanna today, and each Sunday. Because we need to be saved.
But also because, when we let those words cross our lips:
Hosanna in the Highest, blessed is he who comes in the name of Lord. Hosanna in the Highest.
We are reminded.
God has come.
God has saved.
God has come for us.
God has saved us.