Matthew 21:8 “And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and strawed them in the way.”
Why did people do this?
The people of Jerusalem saw Jesus as their present saviour from the Roman empire, not their saviour from their sins. They were welcoming a new king who they believed would free them from the Romans and make Israel a mighty nation again.
The symbolism of palm branches is historical and something the people would recognize. In ancient times they symbolized victory and goodness. These were often inscribed in the walls of temples and palaces.
Hosanna in the highest!
Matthew 21:9 “And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest.”
Hosanna is an expression of joy, praise or adoration. “Alleluia!”
Son of David is a reference to Jesus kingship. He was the promised descendant of David. He had a right to the throne of Israel.