According to my internet search, “The English words ‘The pen is mightier than the sword’ were first written by novelist and playwright Edward Bulwer-Lytton in 1839, in his historical play Cardinal Richelieu. Richelieu, chief minister to King Louis XIII, discovers a plot to kill him, but as a priest he is unable to take up arms against his enemies. His page, Francois, points out: But now, at your command are other weapons, my good Lord. Richelieu agrees: The pen is mightier than the sword… Take away the sword; States can be saved without it! The saying quickly gained currency, says Susan Ratcliffe, associate editor of the Oxford Quotations Dictionaries. ‘By the 1840s it was a commonplace.’” Now, when Jesus called himself the “Alpha and the Omega” one can’t help but think of the alphabet, the letters of which are all written with a pen. But when Jesus calls Himself the “Alpha and the Omega” in Revelation 1:8 he adds a final title to his name. Look at this, “‘I am the Alpha and the Omega,’ says the Lord God, ‘who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.’” Yes indeed! The pen proved much mightier than the sword.

I just finished reading Phillip Schaff’s History of the Christian Church, Volume II. I haven’t finished the whole volume but I did finish the section dealing with the martyrdom of Christians during the first 300 years of Christianity. They were burned alive. They were thrown to wild beasts. They were tortured in many ways, but the most common form of execution was with the “sword.” All these Martyrs had put their faith in the “Almighty” one that they had learned about through the writings (The New Testament) of those who have gone before them. Most of the writers of the New Testament ended as Martyrs themselves but their written works of the pen didn’t die with them! During these periods of persecution the emperors also attempted to eliminate the writings of the Apostles. When one copy was burned, four more appeared in the Empire. The Bible, inspired by God, containing the “Word” of God manifested to man in the human person of God’s son, Jesus, persevered through thousands of executions. Tertullian, one of the more prolific in penmanship (in contrast to swordsmanship) wrote, “The blood of the Martyrs is the seed of the Church.” Man’s swords could not overcome the almighty power of God’s son revealed to all mankind through the pens of the Apostles! By 300, those who wielded the swords of execution were all gone but the words of the Bible persevered and took over the entire Roman Empire with the conversion of Constantine.

Looking at Revelation 1:7 and 8 together we read, “Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen. ‘I am the Alpha and the Omega,’ says the Lord God, ‘who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.’” The sword that pierced Jesus’ side to insure his death failed marvelously! No human sword can stop the “Almighty.” I’m not as good with the “pen” and with words as I should be so i have learned to lean on the words of others to help me when i’m speechless. Here’s what Charles Bolls writes about the Almighty: “His almightiness is expressed alike in the material, physical, spiritual and judicial realms. This feature may also be applied to His sublimity of thought, stability of mind, sovereignty of will, sufficiency of wisdom, security of power, suitability of grace and serenity of peace, in all of which He is the Almighty. When we pause to ponder His enormous energy, His prodigious power, His stupendous strength and marvelous might, these ponderous qualities of ableness, with their tremendous potential, cause us to tremble at the thought of meeting such forces in exercise; but when we turn and learn of the blended qualities of goodness demonstrated in the character of divine activity, we behold the gracious care, generous pity, gorgeous gifts and glorious love which are lavished so freely, and our fears depart for we view His heart.”