Malchus' Ear

"Then Simon Peter, who had a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant, cutting off his right ear. (The servant’s name was Malchus). Jesus commanded Peter, “Put your sword away! Shall I not drink the cup the Father has given me?” (John 18: 10-11).

When the Lord was arrested, Peter, who had a sword, drew it and struck Malchus, a servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear. Driven by his very human zeal, Peter wanted to defend the Lord with his sword. Perhaps he thought that the capture of his master was a matter of force. Peter's perception was His Master was, with no doubt, very weak; he needed a strong man beside him. His action is very similar to Uzzah, during the time of King David, when he tried to prevent the ark falling off the cart driven by oxen. Does God need help?

To Peter’s surprise and everyone else, the Lord restored the ear that had been cut off. His power was intact. If he did not defend himself from his captors, it was not a problem of force.

How many times the Lord restrained himself in using his power poured to others? It was like being compacted within its fragile glass of flesh, he did not want to use it, for example, to move the stone that held his friend Lazarus when he died; he didn’t use it to obtain food at Jacob’s well, he didn’t use it to move from one place to another as happened with Philip the Evangelist; he didn’t use it to call legions of angels awaiting a command to put into action. How is it possible that the hands of those who beat him did not turn leprous as King Uzziah, knowing they committed a far greater desecration?

What about us? We do boast about our little authority, about our tiniest powers. If it is up to us, we would manage to receive all good and procure to defend ourselves of all evil, we would supply all our soul desires. And if we feel we have some power, we’d use right and left, striving to make it very noticeable. The Lord hid His glory. Instead, we are ready to display it anytime. Malchus’ ear tells us that power is only for the glory of God, not for our defense, not for our glory.

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