When Jesus returned to the Temple and began teaching, the leading priests came up to Him. They demanded, "By what authority doest Thou these things? Who gave Thee this authority?"

"I'll tell you by what authority I do these things if you answer one question," Jesus replied. "John the Baptist's authority to baptize. Whence was it? From Heaven, or of men?"

They talked it over among themselves. "If we shall say from Heaven, He shall say unto us, 'Why then did ye not then believe him?' But if we shall of men, we fear the people, for all hold John as a prophet." So they finally replied. "We cannot tell for we don't know."

And Jesus responded, "Then neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things."

— Matthew 21:23-27
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