(א) בראשית. אמר רבי יצחק לא היה צריך להתחיל [את] התורה אלא (שמות יב ב) מהחודש הזה לכם, שהיא מצוה ראשונה שנצטוו [בה] ישראל, ומה טעם פתח בבראשית, משום כח מעשיו הגיד לעמו לתת להם נחלת גוים (תהלים קיא ו), שאם יאמרו אמות העולם לישראל לסטים אתם, שכבשתם ארצות שבעה גוים, הם אומרים להם כל הארץ של הקדוש ברוך הוא היא, הוא בראה ונתנה לאשר ישר בעיניו, ברצונו נתנה להם וברצונו נטלה מהם ונתנה לנו:
Rabbi Yitzchak said: The Torah could have started from, 'This month shall be to you' (Exodus 12:2), which is the first mitzvah which Israel was commanded. So what is the reason that it opened with with 'In the beginning'?
Because of [the idea expressed in the verse]: '[God] has declared to His people the power of His works, in order to give them the heritage of the nations.' (Psalms 111:6). Thus, should the nations of the world say to Israel: 'You are robbers, having conquered the lands of the seven [Canaanite] nations [by force],' [Israel] can say to them: 'The whole earth belongs to the Holy Blessed One; He created it and gave it to whomever He saw fit. By His will He gave it to them, and by His will He took it from them and gave it to us.'
(א) ויהי רעב בארץ הנה אברהם ירד למצרים מפני הרעב לגור שם להחיות נפשו בימי הבצורת והמצרים עשקו אותו חנם לקחת את אשתו והקב"ה נקם נקמתם בנגעים גדולים והוציאו משם במקנה בכסף ובזהב וגם צוה עליו פרעה אנשים לשלחם ורמז אליו כי בניו ירדו מצרים מפני הרעב לגור שם בארץ והמצרים ירעו להם ויקחו מהם הנשים כאשר אמר (שמות א כב) וכל הבת תחיון והקב"ה ינקום נקמתם בנגעים גדולים עד שיוציאם בכסף וזהב וצאן ובקר מקנה כבד מאד והחזיקו בהם לשלחם מן הארץ לא נפל דבר מכל מאורע האב שלא יהיה בבנים והענין הזה פרשוהו בבראשית רבה (ח ו) רבי פנחס בשם רבי אושעיא אמר אמר הקב"ה לאברהם צא וכבוש את הדרך לפני בניך ואתה מוצא כל מה שכתוב באברהם כתוב בבניו באברהם כתוב ויהי רעב בארץ בישראל כתיב (להלן מה ו) כי זה שנתים הרעב בקרב הארץ ודע כי אברהם אבינו חטא חטא גדול בשגגה שהביא אשתו הצדקת במכשול עון מפני פחדו פן יהרגוהו והיה לו לבטוח בשם שיציל אותו ואת אשתו ואת כל אשר לו כי יש באלהים כח לעזור ולהציל גם יציאתו מן הארץ שנצטווה עליה בתחילה מפני הרעב עון אשר חטא כי האלהים ברעב יפדנו ממות ועל המעשה הזה נגזר על זרעו הגלות בארץ מצרים ביד פרעה במקום המשפט שמה הרשע והחטא
(1) And there was famine in the land (Gen. 12:10) – behold, Avraham went down to Egypt due to hunger, to live there temporarily in order to save his life in the days of drought, and the Egyptians exploited him without cause to get his wife, and the Holy One of Blessing avenged them with great afflictions, and brought him out from there with cattle, silver and gold, and Pharaoh had commanded men to send him. And it is a hint from (Avraham), since his children went down to Egypt because of hunger to live temporarily in the land, and the Egyptians did evil to them and took their wives, as it says (Exodus 1:22) And every (baby) girl you shall let live, and the Holy One of Blessing avenged them with great afflictions until they were taken out (laden) with silver and gold and sheep and cattle, with many possessions, and they (Egyptians) pressed them to be gone from the land. Not a single incident that befell the father didn't befall the children. And this matter is explained in Bereshit Rabbah 8:6: "Rabi Pinchas said in the name of Rabbi Oshaya - The Holy One said to Avraham: ‘Go and conquer the way for your children.’ And you find that everything that was written regarding Avraham was also written regarding his descendants: regarding Avraham it is written and there was famine in the land, regarding Israel it is written (Genesis 45:6) this is already two years of famine in all the land." And you should know that our father Avraham committed a great sin unintentionally, in which he brought his righteous wife to stumble into transgression because of his fear of getting killed, and he should have trusted the Name to have saved him, his wife and all that was his, because Elohim has power to help and to save. Also his going out from the land - of which he had been commanded at the beginning - due to famine was a transgression that he committed, because Elohim would have saved him from dying (even) in a famine. And because of this deed it was decreed that his seed would be in exile in Egypt under the hand of Pharaoh.
(10) And Jacob went out from Beer-sheba, and went toward Haran. (11) And he lighted upon the place, and tarried there all night, because the sun was set; and he took one of the stones of the place, and put it under his head, and lay down in that place to sleep. (12) And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven; and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it. (13) And, behold, the LORD stood beside him, and said: ‘I am the LORD, the God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac. The land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed. (14) And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south. And in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed. (15) And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee whithersoever thou goest, and will bring thee back into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of.’
(1) And the life of Sarah was a hundred and seven and twenty years; these were the years of the life of Sarah. (2) And Sarah died in Kiriatharba—the same is Hebron—in the land of Canaan; and Abraham came to mourn for Sarah, and to weep for her. (3) And Abraham rose up from before his dead, and spoke unto the children of Heth, saying: (4) ’I am a stranger and a sojourner with you: give me a possession of a burying-place with you, that I may bury my dead out of my sight.’ (5) And the children of Heth answered Abraham, saying unto him: (6) ’Hear us, my lord: thou art a mighty prince among us; in the choice of our sepulchres bury thy dead; none of us shall withhold from thee his sepulchre, but that thou mayest bury thy dead.’ (7) And Abraham rose up, and bowed down to the people of the land, even to the children of Heth. (8) And he spoke with them, saying: ‘If it be your mind that I should bury my dead out of my sight, hear me, and entreat for me to Ephron the son of Zohar, (9) that he may give me the cave of Machpelah, which he hath, which is in the end of his field; for the full price let him give it to me in the midst of you for a possession of a burying-place.’ (10) Now Ephron was sitting in the midst of the children of Heth; and Ephron the Hittite answered Abraham in the hearing of the children of Heth, even of all that went in at the gate of his city, saying: (11) ’Nay, my lord, hear me: the field give I thee, and the cave that is therein, I give it thee; in the presence of the sons of my people give I it thee; bury thy dead.’ (12) And Abraham bowed down before the people of the land. (13) And he spoke unto Ephron in the hearing of the people of the land, saying: ‘But if thou wilt, I pray thee, hear me: I will give the price of the field; take it of me, and I will bury my dead there.’ (14) And Ephron answered Abraham, saying unto him: (15) ’My lord, hearken unto me: a piece of land worth four hundred shekels of silver, what is that betwixt me and thee? bury therefore thy dead.’ (16) And Abraham hearkened unto Ephron; and Abraham weighed to Ephron the silver, which he had named in the hearing of the children of Heth, four hundred shekels of silver, current money with the merchant. (17) So the field of Ephron, which was in Machpelah, which was before Mamre, the field, and the cave which was therein, and all the trees that were in the field, that were in all the border thereof round about, were made sure
This is just the central piece of the Spies narrative. But the whole of Chapters 13 & 14 are relevant.
First model for a relationship between Israel and the diaspora.
The Torah actually defines the boundaries of the land itself and of the tribal plots.
THEN LOOK AT ALL OF PARSHAT EKEV