What Does Hosanna Mean?

Discover the true meaning of ‘hosanna’ and its religious significance in Christian worship. Learn about its origins, biblical examples, and modern usage.


When people think of the word ‘hosanna,’ they often associate it with religious ceremonies or songs. But what does hosanna really mean? Let’s delve into the origins and significance of this powerful word.

Meaning of Hosanna

Hosanna is an expression of adoration, praise, or joy. It is often used in religious contexts, particularly in the Christian faith, as a cry of worship and supplication to God. The term originates from the Hebrew word ‘hoshana,’ which means ‘save, we pray.’

Religious Significance

In Christian liturgy, ‘hosanna’ is commonly associated with Palm Sunday, the day when Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey and was greeted by crowds waving palm branches and shouting ‘Hosanna in the highest!’ This event symbolizes the recognition of Jesus as the Messiah and the Savior.

Examples in Scripture

Throughout the Bible, the word ‘hosanna’ is used in various contexts to express praise and adoration to God. In the Book of Psalms, Psalm 118:25 states, ‘Lord, save us! Lord, grant us success!’ which is often translated as ‘Hosanna!’

  • Mark 11:9-10 – ‘Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the coming kingdom of our ancestor David! Hosanna in the highest heaven!’
  • Matthew 21:9 – ‘The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted, ‘Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest heaven!’

Modern Usage

Today, ‘hosanna’ continues to be a prominent word in Christian worship and music. Many hymns and songs incorporate the term as a declaration of praise and adoration towards God. Contemporary Christian artists also use ‘hosanna’ in their lyrics to convey a sense of reverence and awe.


In conclusion, hosanna is a powerful word that carries deep religious significance. It expresses adoration, praise, and supplication to God, acknowledging His role as the Savior. Whether sung in a church service or proclaimed in prayer, ‘hosanna’ remains a timeless expression of faith and devotion.

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