Now it happened on one of those days, as He taught the people in the temple and preached the gospel, that the chief priests and the scribes, together with the elders, confronted Him and spoke to Him, saying, “Tell us, by what authority are You doing these things? Or who is he who gave You this authority?” But He answered and said to them, “I also will ask you one thing, and answer Me: The baptism of John—was it from heaven or from men?” (Luke 20:1-4 NKJV)
Is it from Heaven or from men?
This is a key question that is both relevant today and had to be answered by the Pharisees when Jesus walked the Earth. The answer was, of coarse, from Heaven. But, the Pharisees would not admit that Jesus was the Son of God. Men create rules. Men have gods. The God of Heaven and Earth will honor those rules and the consequences of those rules. However, we are ultimately accountable to God of Heaven. He is the one true God that created us.
I am always fascinated how the Pharisees knew the scriptures and missed that the actual Son of God was right there among them. It shows how we can be so totally consumed with our own actions and knowledge. The Pharisees would test Jesus again and again. Jesus made them uncomfortable because His very existence challenged their authority, their way of life. They spied on him, hoping to catch him saying something he shouldn’t have.
And the chief priests and the scribes that very hour sought to lay hands on Him, but they feared the people —for they knew He had spoken this parable against them. So they watched Him, and sent spies who pretended to be righteous, that they might seize on His words, in order to deliver Him to the power and the authority of the governor. (Luke 20:19, 20 NKJV)
Their opportunity never came.
But they could not catch Him in His words in the presence of the people. And they marveled at His answer and kept silent. (Luke 20:26 NKJV)