Matthew 26:51-52. “And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus stretched out his hand, and drew his sword, and struck a servant of the high priest’s, and smote off his ear. Then said Jesus unto him, Put up thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.”
John 18:10 tells us that is was Peter who drew his sword. Whether he was aiming at the servant’s (Malchus’) head and missed, getting his ear instead, we really don’t know. It’s likely that Peter’s swordsmanship wasn’t terrific. He was a fisherman, after all, and not a soldier.
It’s clear, though, that he was making an effort to protect Jesus when he saw the men who had come with the chief priest lay hands on Him, preparing to take Him under arrest. Our wonderful, impetuous, hot-headed Peter wasn’t going to stand by and let it happen!
He must have been so frustrated, then, when Jesus admonished him. “Put your sword away, Peter. All who take up the sword will die by the sword.”
Can you imagine the disillusion that was beginning to set in among the disciples? One of their own betrayed Jesus to the priests; they saw the men lay hands on the Master; and now, Jesus was telling Peter not to fight, not to resist. Why? Why wouldn’t Jesus allow them to protect Him?
Jesus answers that question in he next few verses.