In this week’s Parsha we are told about the laws of an Eved Ivri. The Pasuk says that if the Eved Ivri wants to continue to be a slave after six years, his master must drill a hole in his ear (21:6). What is so puzzling about this Pasuk is why we pierce the slave’s ear as opposed to any other part of his body?
The Gemara in Kiddushin (22b) says that the reason his ear is pierced is because it was his ear which heard Hashem say on Har Sinai, Avadai Heim, “They are my servants.” Therefore if he wants to remain a servant his ear is pierced.
The Sefat Emet also asks why the ear is pierced and not any other body part such as the heart or the brain. He explains that the ear is pierced because Hashem’s message reached the ear, where it was not sent to the brain. As a result the Eved Ivri is punished for not listening properly, by making himself a slave to a master instead of to Hashem.
We see from the Eved Ivri how important it is to listen to Hashem and to fulfill his commandments properly.