What he said was this: “Peter had been right, always right; the power to cause pain is the only power that matters, the power to kill and destroy, because if you can’t kill then you are always subject to those who can, and nothing and no one will ever save you.” Granted, this statement came off the back of a particularly brutal episode where some other boys attempted to kill him out of jealousy at his inexplicable run of successes, and perhaps things will change as the story progresses, but this also seems to be a major theme of the book as a whole thus far.
On reading the above statement something in my spirit rebelled against it. Surely that can’t be the only kind of power that matters.
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”
“Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” - Matt 10:28
“Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” - John 15:13
Some people demonstrate power by stealing, killing, and destroying. That’s easy to do. But it takes a great deal more power to choose to allow yourself to suffer the pain and loss of that kind of action for the benefit of another, especially when the other in question is the one inflicting the pain. That is why it is so mind blowing when Christ is on the cross and he asks the Father to forgive his murderers on the basis of their own ignorance of the significance of their actions. He was suffering execution for the benefit of those who had carried out his execution.
I would like to respond to Ender Wiggins like this: “the power to cause pain is not the only power that matters, the power to kill and destroy can only hurt you if you fear them. Those who fear pain, death, and loss are always subject to those who hurt, steal, and kill, but those who love willingly suffer pain, loss, and even death to benefit those whom they love, and Christ showed us that nothing is more powerful than that.”