What kept Jesus on the cross?

Matthew describes how most people rejected Jesus as he hung on the cross. The soldiers, those who passed by, the Jewish leaders, and even the two thieves who were crucified on either side of him. Each group mocked Jesus as either a failed king, prophet, or teacher. Why then would he stay on the cross? As the Son of God, he could have answered their mocking cries for him to save himself. He could have removed himself from the cross, and stood before them, surrounded by thousands of angels. And yet, he chose to stay on the cross, suffering, bleeding, and slowly dying.

“Mounce rightly observed, “It was the power of love, not nails, that kept him there.'”
— Craig Blomberg

We are all glad that Jesus did not respond to the taunts of these various groups the way that we would have. Thankfully, he was willing to endure their jeers, along with the other aspects of his suffering, for the sake of each of us, people who did not deserve any portion of his love or forgiveness.

“For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” —Romans 5:6-8