They questioned among themselves (sunzhtein autou). By look and word. A new teaching (didach kainh). One surprise had followed another this day. The teaching was fresh (kainh), original as the dew of the morning on the blossoms just blown. That was a novelty in that synagogue where only staid and stilted rabbinical rules had been heretofore droned out. This new teaching charmed the people, but soon will be rated as heresy by the rabbis. And it was with authority (kat exousian). It is not certain whether the phrase is to be taken with "new teaching," "It's new teaching with authority behind it," as Moffatt has it, or with the verb; "with authority commandeth even the unclean spirits" (kai toi pneumasin toi akaqartoi epitassei). The position is equivocal and may be due to the fact that "Mark gives the incoherent and excited remarks of the crowd in this natural form" (Swete). But the most astonishing thing of all is that the demons "obey him" (upakouousin autwi). The people were accustomed to the use of magical formulae by the Jewish exorcists ( Matthew 12:27 ; Acts 19:13 ), but here was something utterly different. Simon Magus could not understand how Simon Peter could do his miracles without some secret trick and even offered to buy it ( Acts 8:19 ).