Psalm 130:7-8 (NIV) - O Israel, put your hope in the LORD, for with the LORD is unfailing love and with him is full redemption. He himself will redeem Israel from all their sins.
In Jesus' time Jewish people traveled to Jerusalem every year in order to celebrate the Passover feast. Some journeyed for days and came from far away walking in groups with family and friends as company. Ascending and descending the hills around Jerusalem, they made their way slowly toward their beloved city. As they walked the dusty roads they chanted or sang psalms praising and glorifying God.*
"I lift up my eyes to the hills--where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth."...
"I rejoiced with those who said to me, "Let us go to the house of the LORD."...
"I lift up my eyes to You, to You whose throne is in heaven"...
These are some of the words chanted and sung on the way to a feast that God had appointed. A yearly reminder of when the Nation of Israel was saved by the blood of a lamb on their doorways.
On a day long ago Jesus too approached Jerusalem on His way to celebrate the Passover meal; His final meal with His closest followers. Riding humbly on a donkey, He would have seen the city revealed as He reached the top of a hill. He would have heard the people chanting and singing praises. And He knew what awaited Him in that city that He loved so much.
Later those people shouted and danced, waving palm branches and laying them out at His feet as a sign of homage, crying out "Hosanna!" (or "Save!") and "Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!".
They did not fully realize that the One they joyfully welcomed with shouts of praise was the reason for their feast.
Jesus, Messiah, Son of God was The Lamb whose blood would save them completely and finally.
But the lamb had to die in order for the exchange to be complete and by the end of the week the Lamb of God would die in our place to save us.
Miraculously His death was not the end - He rose again in triumph and victory!