And the people stood looking on. But even the rulers with them sneered, saying, “He saved others; let Him save Himself if He is the Christ, the chosen of God.” The soldiers also mocked Him, coming and offering Him sour wine, and saying, “If You are the King of the Jews, save Yourself.” And an inscription also was written over Him in letters of Greek, Latin, and Hebrew: THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS. (Luke 23:35-38)
I often pray for my family by calling in a legion of angels for protection. Using the same calling, Jesus could’ve saved himself from crucifixion, but He chose not to. God’s will was not to save Jesus from crucifixion but to save Him and all of us from death. Only God has the power to raise one to heaven. Jesus chose God’s will to save Him from death and seat Him on a throne in heaven.
Most Christians prefer to think of heaven’s hope and wear plain crosses. Most Catholics like to be reminded of the suffering Jesus underwent and wear crucifixes. Often INRI is engraved on top because Pontius Pilate wrote Iesvs Nazarenvs, Rex Iudaeorvm on the cross, Latin for Jesus the Nazarene, King of the Jews. At the time of Jesus’ crucifixion, the charge against the offender was placed on top of the cross. King of the Jews was all Jesus was guilty of.
Jesus shows strength by not calling in a legion of angels to save him from crucifixion, not responding to sneering and mocking of the Jewish rulers, and refusing the sour wine offered to relieve His pain. Humans don’t have that much self-control, yet Jesus was fully human. The power of the Holy Spirit enabled Jesus’ self-control. By prayer, that power is available to us to live life to its fullest, fulfill the dreams God has placed in our hearts, and to become more like Jesus. We can use that power to leave a bad habit or trait at the cross.
Dearest Heavenly Father, holy is Your name. Your power is more than enough to defeat my enemies and cure disease. I pray for that power as I enter the world today with confidence and hope to keep my spirit uplifted. Fulfill the dreams you have placed in my heart, and help me become more like Jesus. In His precious and holy name I pray, amen.