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10/2/2022

A friend asked me, “what does I.N.R.I. on top of the crucifix mean? Those letters are an abbreviation for “Jesus Nazarenus, Rex Judeorum”, with is Latin for “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews.” In Latin the letters “I” and “J” are usually interchangeable, and ancient Latin did not use the letter “J.” That is why it is “I.N.R.I.” instead of “J.N.R.J.” It was common for the Romans to hang a sign above the person being crucified to tell everyone the charges against him. Scripture says that Pilate put the charges against Jesus in Latin, Greek and Hebrew (John 19:19-20). Pilate placed this title above Jesus out of scorn and mockery, rather than faith. He also likely knew it would irritate the Jewish leaders, which it did as we hear in John 19:21. Yet even in his ridicule, Pilate spoke truth. Jesus is King, not of the Jews only, but of all things. Have a Blessed week!


Deacon John

Adapted from SimplyCatholilc.com

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