The Torah states that Avraham, Sara, Yitzchak, Rivka, Yaakov and Leah are all buried in Machpelah Cave. According to tradition, Adam and Chava were buried there as well. Avraham’s purchase of this property to bury Sara was the first concrete action that established a Jewish connection with a particular site in Eretz Yisrael, and upon his death he is also buried in this place. Although the entire Land of Israel was promised to the Children of Israel, there are three key places that were actually purchased, in order that they could never be accused of having taken possession of them inappropriately. Avraham purchased the Cave of Machpelah, Yaakov bought Yosef’s burial plot in Shechem (Genesis 33:19) and King David paid for the site of the Beit Hamikdash (II Samuel 24:24). While we are fortunate that we can actually visit the Cave of Machpelah today, sadly, Jewish authority over Chevron, Shechem and Har Habayit, is disputed by much of the world. We pray for the time when the biblical record will be recognized and respected by the nations.
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