I have been contemplating the fact that on the cross Jesus prayed for sinners! He prayed for us. First, it is amazing that Jesus is even praying—as he is dying on the cross! He isn’t concerned with Himself here like we would be moments before we die. He isn’t defending Himself against all this mockery saying, “Wait minute! Wait a minute!” He is praying! And He is praying for us!” He shows us what we should be doing all the time! If Jesus prays in His deepest trial, shouldn’t we pray in ours. Charles Spurgeon applied this text like this:
To cease from prayer is to renounce the consolations which our case requires. Under all distractions of spirit, and overwhelmings of heart, great God, help us still to pray, and never from the mercy-seat may our footsteps be driven by despair. Our blessed Redeemer persevered in prayer even when the cruel iron rent his tender nerves, and blow after blow of the hammer jarred his whole frame with anguish; and this perseverance may be accounted for by the fact that he was so in the habit of prayer that he could not cease from it; he had acquired a mighty velocity of intercession which forbade him to pause. Those long nights upon the cold mountain side, those many days which had been spent in solitude, those perpetual ejaculations which he was wont to dart up to heaven, all these had formed in him a habit so powerful, that the severest torments could not stay its force. Yet it was more than habit. Our Lord was baptised in the spirit of prayer; he lived in it, it lived in him, it had come to be an element of his nature. . . .I repeat it, let this be our example — never, under any circumstances, however severe the trial, or depressing the difficulty, let us cease from prayer.