No single gospel writer gives a complete account of Jesus' trial, but we can put together what they report to create a comprehensive picture of what happened. Concisely put, there were four events: 1) the arrest, 2) the Jewish trial, 3) the Roman trial, and 4) the execution. But each of the two trials, the Jewish and the Roman, had three parts.

Most people are fascinated with trials, particularly trials of great men or trials that affect the flow of history. In recent days millions followed the impeachment of President William Jefferson Clinton by the house managers, in which the trial was conducted by the Chief Justice of the United States and the verdict was rendered by the United States Senate. While the trial unfolded, people from every walk of life dropped what they were doing in order to follow the developments on television, and the communications media seemed at times to be covering almost nothing else.

The last sentence of this account is a sad one. Despite their protests about standing by him to the end, in the end the disciples fled into the darkness of the garden. The text says, “Then all the disciples deserted him and fled" (v. 56). Jesus had said that the writings of the prophets had to be fulfilled. But here, even before he had fulfilled the most important prophecies by dying, the disciples fulfilled at least one of them by fleeing. Jesus had referred to it on the way to the garden. "I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered” (Matthew 26:31, quoting Zechariah 13:7)

J. C. Ryle wrote, “The sword has a lawful office of its own... But the sword is not to be used in the propagation and maintenance of the gospel… Happy would it have been for the church if this sentence had been more frequently remembered.”

Jesus taught Peter and the others three things. 
1. Peter’s use of his sword was dangerous. Not to Malchus. Jesus healed him. It was dangerous to Peter since “all who draw the sword will die by the sword” (v. 52). That is not precisely true, of course. Not all who take up arms die in battle. But it is a general principle and was a reminder to Peter that he was called to a different way of life.