This is a parallel passage to what we see in Matthew 10 and Mark 6. Yeshua calls the twelve together and gave them specific power over demons and power to heal. This was a specific gift to His twelve disciples. Paul, as an apparent replacement for Judas, was given these same gifts.
When the Pharisees heard that Yeshua was casting out demons, the claimed He was doing this by the power of Beelzebub. Now the Pharisees want a sign “from heaven.” They wrongly reasoned that some miracles here on earth could come from Beelzebub. They thought that if they saw a sign from heaven, then they could determine if Yeshua is really a prophet from Elohim or not. Yeshua showed signs before, why would He not show a sign for the Pharisees? Yeshua did not want them to heed His warnings. He already said they were not to understand His message and that is why He spoke in parables (Matt. 13:9-15).
John was in a tough situation. He was imprisoned because he condemned the actions of Herod (Matt. 14:3-4). He was understandably confused and distraught. He knew that he was the one announcing the arrival of Messiah and that Yeshua was to set up the Kingdom. But if that is the case, then why was he (John) in prison??
John comes out of the wilderness and steps into the picture. His message is short and very clear. “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” The coming kingdom is the prevailing theme in Matthew. It is mentioned some fifty times in this book. John says to “repent.” To “repent” means to turn away from the ways of the world and turn toward the Torah of Elohim (Isaiah 55:7, Ezekiel 18:30-32, 33:11). We are told in Scripture that if we do not repent we will perish (Luke 13:3, Jer. 26:3-6).