What Does Hosanna Mean?

Hosanna is a word of Hebrew origin that means ‘hail’. It can be used as salutation, as an expression of acclamation or admiration, or as a request for mercy. It is a term used, equally, in the Christian and Jewish liturgies.

The biblical meaning of hosanna appears in different passages of the Bible and is used in songs and prayers. In Psalms, for example, it is presented as a request for help, for salvation: “We beseech you, O Lord, hosanna [sálvanos ahora]; we beg you, O Lord, prosper us now” (Psalms: 118: 25).

Hosanna in Judaism

In Judaism, the expression hosanna is part of the great Hallel, a prayer based on biblical psalms, which was sung at the Feast of Passover and other celebrations, such as the Feast of Tabernacles.

Likewise, during the Hoshanot ceremony, the litanies that are sung contain a general refrain that contains the expression hosanna.

See also Easter.

Hosanna in Christianity

For Christianity, hosanna represents the expression with which the people of Jerusalem received Jesus. It is the cry of acclamation and adoration that greeted the entry of Jesus into the city, as narrated in the Bible: “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord, King of Israel” (John 12:13).

Hence, in the celebrations of the Catholic Church, such as Palm Sunday, hymns such as “Hosanna to the son of David” are sung.

See also Palm Sunday.

hosanna and hallelujah

Hosanna and hallelujah are expressions of Christianity used to express joy and praise to God. They can be used interchangeably as synonyms in the context of salutation or admiration, such as “Hosanna to the Most High”, “Hosanna in heaven”, “Hosanna in the highest” or “Hosanna to the son of David”.

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See also Hallelujah.