So, last week, we talked about how Jesus told Peter that before the rooster crowed, he would disown Jesus THREE TIMES! Peter's reply? "Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you." Matt 26: 35
Peter now has something to "prove," right? I mean, if you've ever put yourself out there to where your very integrity is at stake, you're DEFINITELY going to be right! You have EVERYTHING to prove and "your word" to lose...oh, and PRIDE! So, Peter's now antsy about making SURE he does NOT disown Jesus! If there was ANYTHING he was going to prove Jesus wrong about...THIS WAS IT!!!
We're talking from John 18: 1-11, but focusing on verses 10 and 11.
Jesus and His buddies are hanging out at their local hangout--The Olive Grove---(The Mt. of Olives). All of the sudden, a detachment of soldiers and some officials from the chief priests and Pharisees show up, led by Jesus's former disciple, Judas Iscariot. These guys were ARMED and LOOKING for a reason to kill Jesus, and Jesus and all His disciples knew it. So there is this interaction between Jesus and Judas, and then Jesus and the officials (which I'm totally coming back to in a couple weeks!). Finally, this band of people who came to arrest Jesus made their arrest. Jesus, the Man who never sinned, was now in handcuffs.
In Luke 22: 49, we find that during this arrest, his followers realized they were about to take Jesus into custody, so they question Jesus, "Lord, should we strike with our swords?" But, Peter wasn't waiting around for the opportunity to come for someone to accuse HIM of disowning Jesus. He decided to take matters into his own hands! He was going to PROVE to Jesus that he meant what he said when he said he would never disown Jesus or he would DIE trying! He drew his sword, and took a swing...cutting off the EAR of Malchus, a servant of the High Priest.
Jesus's response to this?
1) "Put your sword back in its place...Do you think I cannot call on my Father and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels?" (Matt 26: 52, 53).
2) "...and He touched the man's ear and healed him." Luke 22:51 JESUS JUST HEALED THIS GUY'S EAR! THE GUY WHO CAME FOR THE VERY PURPOSE OF ARRESTING HIM!
3) And Jesus says to Peter in John 18: 11, "Put your sword away! Shall I not drink the cup the Father has given me?" The Man who, that VERY NIGHT, was praying FERVENTLY for God to make a way to take this cup from him, told Peter the cup had to be drunk, and He would be the one to do it.
So, Peter might have been a little overzealous to prove his loyalty to the King, but you know how it goes...you're trying to "prove yourself"...you get a bit prideful if your reputation is on the line and people are looking to you for leadership.
The thing of it is...after all this commotion, "...ALL the disciples deserted him and fled" leaving Jesus alone in "The Grove" with a detachment of armed soldiers, a bunch of people who hated him and wanted to KILL Him, and His betrayer, Judas. Did not ONE of the disciples want to stay? When push came to shove, they ALL...LEFT. Not ONE stayed.
Not even Peter.