We were given the names of the people that went up to Jerusalem with Ezra from Babylon during the reign of Artaxerxes the king. The people were listed according to their families, and the number of men present with them.Ezra later requested for ministers for the house of God, when he found out that there were no Levites present amongst the people. So, they brought men of the sons of Levi for the service of God’s house.
Ezra then proclaimed a fast to enable the people to seek the face of God for the right way for them. An interesting word was used here, ” afflict ourselves”. Fasting is like a self-affliction that tunes the heart and spirit to God, gets his attention, and benefits the individual. When the people fasted and sought God, He was entreated of them, as they were delivered of all their enemies that laid wait on their way to Jerusalem.
God continued to favour his people, as they continued to make progress with their return to Jerusalem, and the building of the temple, and re-establishing the rightful worship of the Lord their God.