“Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” (v34). Though they didn’t understand what was happening, many people were impacted by the unique manner of Jesus’ death. Rather than defending himself or vowing revenge on his killers, Jesus prayed for their forgiveness; one of the criminals and a Roman centurion, seeing his attitude, were both convinced of his innocence (v41,47). The sky darkened, and the curtain of the temple was torn in two.
Jesus demonstrated that the kingdom of God isn’t only revealed in power and glory, but in willing sacrifice, praying for enemies, and our attitude in the midst of defeat.