A Daily Word from the Word for Wednesday, September 3, 2014
“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.” – John 18:10
The mystery is in what this assailed ear represents, which is unlocked by: Malchus’ position in the crowd of soldiers, Peter’s sword, what Jesus did for this servant, and another ear mentioned centuries earlier from the mouth of the ancient prophet Amos.
Let us go back to John 18:4-6 so we can gain the context needed concerning Malchus: “Jesus therefore, knowing all things that would come upon Him, went forward and said to them, ‘Whom are you seeking?’ They answered Him, ‘Jesus of Nazareth.’ Jesus said to them, ‘I am He.’ And Judas, who betrayed Him, also stood with them. Now when He said to them, ‘I am He,’ they drew back and fell to the ground.”
This troop of people (comprised of officers, chief priests, and servants) fell to the ground once Jesus revealed who He was. At that moment, the Son of God and Son of man gave them a glimpse of His Divine power, and those in His presence could not stand. They fell to the ground.
In order for Peter to make contact with Malchus first, this unfortunate soul must have been in front of the other men. Isn’t that just typical of ungodly people? (Yes, even the ‘chief priests’ were ungodly). They hid behind a poor servant. That is what the world will do to folks—those who are weaker (both physically and spiritually); the world will use and abuse and make them do the dirty work. Back in the day, we would call the Malchus’ of the world ‘send-offs.’ We would send them off to do our dirty work, because they wanted so bad to part of our group (I have long since repented of this ungodly way).
Do you want to belong so badly that you would do anything, my brother? Are you so empty that you are willing to be whatever the world wants you to be, my sister? God forbid! We are to be “in the world but not of the world” (John 15:19). We are not supposed to fit in! We are not supposed to blend into the crowd. Jesus was a misfit! And he hung out with a bunch of oddities and nonconformists. Family, do not try to fit in, but try to draw others out! Seek to fit in to Jesus, so that others may be led to Him because of the Greater One Who lives in you! (1 John 4:4).
I don’t believe that Peter was simply a bad aim, not intending to take off the ear. If that was so, it would not have been recorded in God’s perfect and immutable Word. For this, we need to look at the original meaning of “sword,” as used in this verse; which is machaira (pr. mackh-ahee-rah) and means “war” (Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance).
Revelation 12:7-9 puts this war in perspective, as it testifies: “And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, and prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceives the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” This war is a spiritual battle, which wages on the earth until the Lord’s return.
Peter going for the ear is spiritually significant, because he was trying to cut off Malchus’ false understanding. Mark 4:9 backs this up as it proclaims “Then Jesus said, ‘Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.’” The word for “hear,” as used in Mark is akou (pr. ak-oo-o), which means “understand.” Malchus was caught up in the world’s counterfeit understanding, but Jesus was about to give this seeking servant the accurate understanding of God’s Truth!
This is why the ear is so powerful, because through our ears we gain our understanding—and that understanding will either produce life for us, or death by the world. Another prophet named Amos understood this well, as he declared “Thus says the Lord: ‘As a shepherd takes from the mouth of a lion two legs or a piece of an ear, so shall the children of Israel be taken out.”
The lion here represents the devil that “prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8). And this shepherd represents, Jesus, Who through His great love and mercy toward us, stays the enemy from completely devouring us; thus saving for us an ear to hear and a leg to stand on, while our Merciful Jesus prays that we cry out to Him to be saved; so that if and when we do, He restores our understanding and makes us whole through Him.
Father, thank You for Your great mercy toward us in that “while we were still sinners, Christ died for us”(Romans 5:8). Holy Father, supernaturally remove any false desire we have to fit in to the world, when we try desire to fit in to Jesus Christ. Break off of us any false understanding, and heal our ears that we may know the truth of Your Son, Who sets us free. In Jesus Name, we thank You for making us whole and that we hear You clearly accurately and loudly, and the voice of a stranger we will not follow (John 10:5). Amen and Amen.
Take action! Challenge your thinking! Choose to lend your ear to Jesus, and seek His Truth. Determine to allow God to cut every false understanding off of you, and to restore your understanding. Walk wisely by walking daily in the Father’s Word. And continue to fight the good fight of not fitting in; for God, your True Identity, has already given you the victory!
If you have never received Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, I encourage you to do it today, right now, by saying this prayer out loud: “Jesus, forgive me for my sins. I am sorry. I truly desire to be saved and reconciled back to God, my Father, through You. I receive Your sinless Blood as payment in full for my sins—past, present, and future. I now call You my Lord and Savior, and invite You to live within my heart, and to permanently live within me. I make You Lord over me and over my life from this moment on. Amen.” Congratulations! You are now a child of God, made whole and made new, by the Blood of Jesus Christ!
God tells us that we are blessed to be a blessing (Genesis 12:2). Be a blessing to someone by sending them this word of encouragement. If God did not already put someone in your spirit and on your heart that needs to read this uplifting message from above, simply ask your Heavenly Father who to bless on today. Forward this message right now by email, facebook, or twitter.
Jesus is coming soon!
May God Bless you and keep you always.
With warmest regards,
And, in service of The Most High King,
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All references to Hebrew and Greek words and meanings, unless otherwise noted, are taken from the New Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance © 1990 by Thomas Nelson Publishing. All dictionary references are taken from the Merriam-Webster online dictionary © 2013, unless otherwise noted.