After an agonizing time of prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus knew clearly that His time had come, and what was in store for Him. He wasn’t surprised when he saw Roman soldiers and the temple guard with torches, clubs and swords. The chief priests, Pharisees and others, led by Judas Iscariot, came up to Jesus. Judas embraced Him, and kissed Him. Jesus said to him, “Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?” When the other eleven disciples saw what was happening, some asked, “Lord, shall we strike with the sword?”
The Gospel of John gives the most detail of this distressing time. John 18:4 states: “Then Judas, having received a detachment of troops, and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, came there with lanterns, torches, and weapons.” Jesus stepped forward and asked, “Whom are you seeking?” They answered, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus said, “I am He,” and when He said that, “they drew back and fell to the ground.” He asked them again, “Whom are you seeking?” They answered, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus answered, “I have told you that I am He. Therefore, if you seek Me, let these go their way.” Only in the Gospel of John is Peter identified as the one who drew his sword or dagger, and he lunged out and struck the high priest’s servant, Malchus, and cut off his right ear. Jesus said to Peter, “Put your sword into the sheath. Shall I not drink the cup which My Father has given Me?”
Only in Luke 22:51 does it record that at this intense moment in the garden, immediately before they bound Jesus and took Him away, Jesus reached out in compassion to an enemy, “and He touched his ear and healed him.” Had the ear been entirely cut off, touching where the ear had been wouldn’t have healed him. It is more likely that Malchus’ ear was very nearly cut completely off, but with Jesus’ touch, his ear was perfectly restored. No other mention is made of Malchus, but it must have been an unforgettable experience for him.
In Luke 6:35 and 36, Jesus taught principles that have been difficult for many centuries for Christians to grasp. Jesus practiced everything that He preached, and continually serves as the ultimate example of truth applied. “But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.”