[b-hebrew] Hosanna in the Highest

Peter Kirk peterkirk at qaya.org
Mon Dec 15 06:37:33 EST 2003

On 14/12/2003 20:21, peterg45 at excite.com wrote:

>   Hosanna comes form the Hebrew test of Psalm 118.25, and basically means: "Save now!" ...
Not sure about the "now". The Hebrew particle na', commonly used in 
imperatives, is not temporal; most likely it gives to an imperative a 
feel of asking for a favour, rather than commanding.

>... "In the highest" in Matthew, I feel, is a circumlocution for the divine name. ...
Maybe. I would certainly link it to Hebrew `ELYON "most high" rather 
than George Somel's suggestions. `ELYON is commonly a title of God, but 
not always; it can mean high both physically and metaphorically cf. Deu 
26:19, 28:1, Psalm 89:28 (English v.27). The last of these, interpreted 
messianically as referring to Jesus, may well lie behind the NT 
references. Note that Matthew also includes "Hosanna to the Son of 
David", which pretty much implies a link to messianically understood 
passages like Psalm 89.

Peter Kirk
peter at qaya.org (personal)
peterkirk at qaya.org (work)

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