Monday of Holy Week
Scripture: St. John 18:1-18 (NKJV)
18:1 When Jesus had spoken these words, He went out with His disciples over the Brook Kidron, where there was a garden, which He and His disciples entered.
2 And Judas, who betrayed Him, also knew the place; for Jesus often met there with His disciples. 3 Then Judas, having received a detachment of troops, and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, came there with lanterns, torches, and weapons.
4 Jesus therefore, knowing all things that would come upon Him, went forward and said to them, “Whom are you seeking?”
5 They answered Him, “Jesus of Nazareth.”
Jesus said to them, “I am He.” And Judas, who betrayed Him, also stood with them. 6 Now when He said to them, “I am He,” they drew back and fell to the ground.
7 Then He asked them again, “Whom are you seeking?”
And they said, “Jesus of Nazareth.”
8 Jesus answered, “I have told you that I am He. Therefore, if you seek Me, let these go their way,” 9 that the saying might be fulfilled which He spoke, “Of those whom You gave Me I have lost none.”
10 Then Simon Peter, having a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus.
11 So Jesus said to Peter, “Put your sword into the sheath. Shall I not drink the cup which My Father has given Me?”
12 Then the detachment of troops and the captain and the officers of the Jews arrested Jesus and bound Him. 13 And they led Him away to Annas first, for he was the father-in-law of Caiaphas who was high priest that year. 14 Now it was Caiaphas who advised the Jews that it was expedient that one man should die for the people.
15 And Simon Peter followed Jesus, and so did another disciple. Now that disciple was known to the high priest, and went with Jesus into the courtyard of the high priest. 16 But Peter stood at the door outside. Then the other disciple, who was known to the high priest, went out and spoke to her who kept the door, and brought Peter in.
17 Then the servant girl who kept the door said to Peter, “You are not also one of this Man’s disciples, are you?”
He said, “I am not.”
18 Now the servants and officers who had made a fire of coals stood there, for it was cold, and they warmed themselves. And Peter stood with them and warmed himself.
Impetuous Peter strikes Malchus and cuts off his right ear. St. Luke records that immediately Jesus “touched his ear and healed him” (Luke 22:51). This served two purposes. The first purpose was to protect Peter from retribution and to demonstrate to everyone that Jesus’ mission was not violence and insurrection. “For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives but to save them” (Luke 9:56).
The second reason Jesus healed Malchus’ ear was to teach His disciples, then and now, that in order to understand what is about to happen to Him in the next twenty four hours, you’ll need your ears. How often had Jesus said, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” Viewing the trials, the mocking, the spitting, the flogging, the cross, the nails, the thorny crown, all of it must be viewed with the ears. Everything that happens to Jesus isn’t for us to see. We are to hear the words of Moses and the Prophets and let their divinely inspired words teach us about the passion of Christ. The prophets teach us that it was the Father’s will that the Son be smote, that His suffering was for the sake of sins, and that by His wounds we are healed. If we only look at Jesus’ passion and death with our eyes then all we’ll see is suffering and death. But if you see with your ears what Moses and the Prophets have to say, then you’ll see the sacrifice for your sins, for your salvation, and for your everlasting life.
We pray: Give us ears to hear, Almighty God, so that we may rightly view our Lord’s passion and death through the inspired words of Your Prophets, and by hearing, truly love You and give You thanks for our salvation. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.