Palm Sunday Playlist #2: Eight Variations on “Hosanna” (Contemporary)

April 13, 2014

Last night I enjoyed listening to a selection of contemporary Christian songs that incorporate the word “Hosanna” in a key way in the song… All eight songs are quite different, but all exalt Christ.  Have I missed any that you’d like to recommend?  If so, leave a comment!


Andrew PetersonHosanna, from his album Resurrection Letters, Vol 2.  (2010)


Michael W. SmithHosanna, from his 1984 album Michael W. Smith 2.


Passion (Christy Nockels)Hosanna (I See the King of Glory), from the album God of this City (2008)


Paul Baloche: Hosanna (Praise is Rising) [Live], from the new 2014 album Paul Baloche, Live.


Sandi Patty (with 2nd Chapter of Acts)Hosanna, from her 1984 album Morning Like This.  (This is also included in the playlist below)


Scott Wesley BrownHosanna (Open the Gates) from the 1996 album Mission of Praise [rereleased in 2008]


Silverwind: Shout Hosanna, from their 1985 album By His Spirit.


Twila Paris:  Hosanna, from her 2005 album He is Exalted.

Palm Sunday around the blogosphere…

April 13, 2014

Here are the Palm Sunday entries at some of the blogs and websites I read with some regularity…

A Prayer for Palm Sunday: May Christ ever Triumph in our Hearts

April 13, 2014
My friend, the Rev. Kendall Harmon posted this wonderful prayer at TitusOneNine today.  Thanks Kendall.  That’s a keeper!

As on this day we keep the special memory of our Redeemer’s entry into the city, so grant, O Lord, that now and ever he may triumph in our hearts. Let the King of grace and glory enter in, and let us lay ourselves and all we are in full and joyful homage before him; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.

–Handley Moule


Here’s an additional Palm Sunday prayer from the Anglican Church of South India, also posted by Kendall today:

O Christ, the King of glory, who didst enter the holy city in meekness to be made perfect through the suffering of death: Give us grace, we beseech thee, in all our life here to take up our cross daily and follow thee, that hereafter we may rejoice with thee in thy heavenly kingdom; who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Spirit, God, world without end.

–Church of South India

Palm Sunday 2014 entries at Lent & Beyond

April 13, 2014

palm-branch-crossI’ve been enjoying posting a whole bunch of Palm Sunday entries today.  Here’s a list of everything I’ve posted for Palm Sunday:

For Palm Sunday entries from prior years, check out our Palm Sunday compilation, or browse through our Palm Sunday category.

Palm Sunday Quotes: the cries of “Hosanna!” required the cries of “Crucify Him!”

April 13, 2014

“…by yelling “Hosanna!” (which means “Save now!”), the crowd was already yelling “Crucify Him!” and didn’t even realize it. We could not be saved without His death on the cross.”

– a comment by poet Teresa Roberts Johnson related to her latest poem “Fourth Day”

A Palm Sunday poem by Teresa Roberts Johnson: The Witness

April 13, 2014

Donkeys seem to inspire Palm Sunday poetry, of course including GK Chesterton’s well-known poem, The Donkey.

In a similar vein, Anglican poet, Teresa Roberts Johnson, who blogs at Angliverse, last year wrote a poem entitled the Witness.  Here’s the first half of the poem:

The Witness:

One minute I was dozing in the morning sun;
Then I awoke to find my ropes had been undone.
The kindest Man that I have ever seen drew near,
And with one gentle touch He drove away my fear.
When His disciples led me to a crowded street
I bowed my back to Christ, the Mercy Seat.
So I, a donkey, bore the burden of the Lord;
Beneath my feet were palm fronds, spread there by a horde
Of selfish people who had sought to crown Him king,
And loud hosannas through the lanes began to ring.   […. there’s more ….]

Go read it all, along with her notes on the background to. the poem

And don’t miss her brand new Holy Week poem posted today entitled Fourth Day.


See our compilation of Poems for Holy Week for more Palm Sunday poetry.

Four Devotional Reflections for Palm Sunday from the Barnstorming blog

April 13, 2014

I spent some time a week or so ago browsing through the archives of one of my favorite blogs, Emily Polis Gibson’s Barnstorming blog.  I found four of her posts that make wonderful Palm Sunday devotionals:

Palm Sunday:

“So it is ourselves that we must spread under Christ’s feet, not coats or lifeless branches or shoots of trees, matter which wastes away and delights the eye only for a few brief hours.  But we have clothed ourselves with Christ’s grace, with the whole Christ–’for as many of you as were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ’—so let us spread ourselves like coats under his feet.”   –8th century bishop Andrew of Crete


Grab a cup of tea or coffee and go enjoy….!

Update:  her 2014 Palm Sunday Entry is here:  Listening to Lent — Every Stone Shall Cry


An Excellent Overview of Holy Week (from an Anglican perspective)

April 13, 2014

Many of our regular readers will be familiar with Patrick Comerford’s blog which I link with some regularity.  He is a priest in the Church of Ireland (Anglican), Lecturer in Anglicanism and Liturgy in the Church of Ireland Theological Institute, Adjunct Assistant Professor in the University of Dublin (Trinity College Dublin) and a Canon of Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin.   He typically posts good series of devotionals and blog entries in Advent and Lent.  I first discovered his blog through his Lenten poems series a few years ago.

While reviewing that Lenten poetry series in putting together my compilations of Holy Week poems and Good Friday poems, I came across a post he wrote in 2010 which gives an excellent overview of Holy Week history and observance from an Anglican perspective,  I highly recommend it!

A journey together through Holy Week

Here’s his section on Palm Sunday:

Sunday of Holy Week (Palm Sunday):

Holy Week begins with the Sixth and last Sunday in Lent, Palm Sunday, which recalls Christ’s Triumphant entry into Jerusalem of Christ on the Sunday before his Passion and death (see Matthew 21: 1-11; Mark 11: 1-11; Luke 19: 28-44; John 12: 12-19).

In many churches, Palm Sunday is marked by the distribution of palm leaves, often tied in the shape of crosses, and by dramatised readings of the Passion Narrative in one of the Four Gospels. In Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin, on Sunday morning, we began with the Blessing of the Palms in the Cloister Garth, along with the Gospel reading (Luke 19: 28-40). Then, back inside the cathedral, instead of a sermon we had and a dramatised reading of the Passion Narrative (Luke 22: 14 – 23: 56) from the pulpit.

The Gospels tell us that, before entering Jerusalem, Christ was staying at Bethany and Bethphage. The Gospel according to Saint John adds that he had dinner with Lazarus and his sisters Mary and Martha.

While he was there, he sent two disciples to the neighbouring village to retrieve a donkey that was tied up but had never been ridden. Christ then rode the donkey into Jerusalem. As he rode into Jerusalem, the people lay down their cloaks in front of him, and also lay down the small branches of trees. The people sang part of Psalm 118: “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord” (Psalm 118: 26; Matthew 21: 9; Mark 11: 9; Luke 19: 38; John 12: 13).

On Palm Sunday, in many Anglican churches, palm fronds and palm substitutes – or sometimes substitutes, such as yew cuttings – are blessed outside the church, and the blessing is followed by a procession into the church. In some churches, children are given palms and then walk in procession around the inside of the church while the adults remain seated.

The palm leaves or palm crosses are often saved to be burned the following year to use as ashes used on Ash Wednesday.

The liturgical colour has changed from violet to red, indicating the supreme redemptive sacrifice Christ was entering into as he entered the city of his Passion and Resurrection.

The Collect of the Day:

Almighty and everlasting God,
who, in your tender love towards the human race,
sent your Son our Saviour Jesus Christ
to take upon him our flesh
and to suffer death upon the cross:
Grant that we may follow the example
of his patience and humility,
and also be made partakers of his resurrection;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Post-Communion Prayer:

Lord Jesus Christ,
you humbled yourself in taking the form of a servant
and in obedience died on the cross for our salvation.
Give us the mind to follow you
and to proclaim you as Lord and King,
to the glory of God the Father. Amen.

Go read the full entry.    There are entries for each day of the week including the readings, and the daily collects (prayers).



Palm Sunday Playlist #1 (Contemporary)

April 13, 2014

Back in 2009 I posted a short Palm Sunday devotional:  Prayer and Songs for Palm Sunday: Ride on to die – the contrast between exuberance and sorrow which included a 5 song playlist:

  • Sandi PattiHosanna (from her 1986 album Was it a Morning Like This)
  • First CallMessiah (from their 1986 album Undivided)
  • Dan SchutteHosanna to the Son of David (from his 1989 album Always & Everywhere)
  • Fernando OrtegaCome Oh Redeemer Come (from his 1999 EP Give Me Jesus)
  • Michael Card: Ride on to Die (from his 1983 album Known by the Scars – an album focused soley on Christ’s passion in Holy Week.  HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!)

These 5 songs capture something of the shifting mood of Palm Sunday and Holy Week, from the excitement and joyful exuberance and praise of the crowd, the longing of souls for a Messiah, and then the determination and sorrow of Jesus as He chooses to ride on to the fate He knows awaits Him.

I hope to post several other Palm Sunday playlists later today and several Holy Week playlists througout the week.  I’ll be posting some traditional and choral music as well as worship music and songs from contemporary Christian artists.

Pastor Scotty Smith’s Palm Sunday prayer

April 13, 2014

Pastor Scotty Smith of Christ Community Church in Nashville has posted a great Palm Sunday prayer at his blog Heavenward:

Prayer for Palm Sunday

Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he, humble and mounted on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey. I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim and the war horse from Jerusalem; and the battle bow shall be cut off, and he shall speak peace to the nations; his rule shall be from sea to sea, and from the River to the ends of the earth. As for you also, because of the blood of my covenant with you, I will set your prisoners free from the waterless pit. Return to your stronghold, O prisoners of hope; today I declare that I will restore to you double. Zech. 9:9-12

Dear Lord Jesus, we’ll exhaust the wonder of this passage as soon as we drink Niagara Falls dry; as soon as we memorize the names of every star you’ve launched into the heavens; as soon as we finish climbing all the Alps in Switzerland, Italy, Germany, and France. You are the King of Zechariah’s vision, and on this Palm Sunday, we worship, honor, and bless you.

No other king could show up to conquer warhorses and warriors, humbly riding on the foal of a donkey. No other king could break the battle bow and the backbone of all warfare, by the brokenness of the cross. No other king could supplant the politics of evil and tyranny of power, with an eternal reign of peace.

No other king could offer his life and death, for the redemption and restoration, of rebels and idolaters like us. No other king could possibly make prisoners of sin, death, and “waterless pits,” into prisoners of hope.

Lord Jesus, you are that King—the King of glory, the King of kings and Lord of lords—the Monarch of mercy, the Governor of grace, the Prince of Peace. Great is our rejoicing, for you have come to us, righteous and victorious, loving and sovereign.

By the riches of your grace, continue to free us from waterless pits, broken cisterns and worthless idols. By the power of the gospel, enable us to live as prisoners of hope and agents of redemption until the Day you return to finish making all things new. So very Amen we pray, in your holy and matchless name.

A very short, but powerful prayer for Palm Sunday

April 13, 2014

I found this very short prayer from the Lent Devotional site of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in NYC (the church where Tim Keller serves), to be very powerful and to the point for Palm Sunday:

Lord, we rejoice and shout aloud that you would give your life to pay the price for our treachery. We praise you as our beloved King we have been waiting for. Come reign in our heart, our lives and our city. In Christ’s Name, Amen.

from here.


April 13, 2014

Isaiah 45:7 a NIV

I form the light . . .

2 Corinthians 4:6 ESV

For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Creator God,

You form the light.  Let light shine out of the darkness in Syria.  Amen.

Another Syrian chemical weapon attack

April 13, 2014

From Fox News: The current attack is confirmed, and both sides blame one another.

Daniel 2:44-45a  (NIV)
“In the time of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever.  This is the meaning of the vision of the rock cut out of a mountain, but not by human hands—a rock that broke the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver and the gold to pieces. . . . “

Our Father in heaven,

The civil war in Syria reminds me of King Nebuchadnezzar’s dream statue with feet and toes partly of baked clay and partly of iron.   The iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver and the gold were all broken to pieces and became like chaff on a threshing floor in the summer. The wind swept them away without leaving a trace. But the rock that struck the statue became a huge mountain and filled the whole earth.

The people of Syria are killing one another and destroying the infrastructure of their nation.  They are becoming like chaff on a threshing floor.

For who is God besides the Lord?
And who is the Rock except our God?

May Your kingdom, Lord God, become a huge mountain and fill Syria.  Amen.

Psalm 18:31

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