The Israelites are returning from captivity to rebuild the Temple of the LORD. The process began by identifying who would return and who would fill the roles of priest and Levite. This would be important spiritually as well as economically. Spiritually, the people in these roles needed to match God’s requirements for the people. Economically, this would determine who will live off of the tithes brought in by the other eleven tribes. Many priests and Levites were identified for the return trip and rebuilding project.
Another group returned at this time from the towns of Tel-melah, Tel-harsha, Kerub, Addan, and Immer. However, they could not prove that they or their families were descendants of Israel. (Ezra 2:59 NLT)
Some groups thought they were descendants of priests and Levites, but they didn’t have the paperwork to prove it. This created a problem because they all want to do this return and rebuild in a way that is walking together with God. So, they did exactly what they should have done. They asked God.
They searched for their names in the genealogical records, but they were not found, so they were disqualified from serving as priests. The governor told them not to eat the priests' share of food from the sacrifices until a priest could consult the LORD about the matter by using the Urim and Thummim--the sacred lots. (Ezra 2:62-63 NLT)
Whether these families end up as Levites or not is actually secondary to the story. What’s more important here is that they wanted to walk with God, so they asked God. They allowed God to lead. They had the humility to accept whatever role God had in store for them. The Israelites were, once again, walking together with God.
How about you? Do you have difficulty determining your part of God’s Plan? How do you go about finding out? Do you search the Scriptures? Do you turn to God in prayer? Do you let God lead your decision-making process? Do you want to walk together with God?