Today's Daf Yomi alludes to the unfortunate incident "Pilegesh B'Givah" (Shoftim ch. 19). As I read through it to prepare for the shiur, I found that the Ramban explains most of it in Parshas Vayera and the Zohar adds explanation in Parshas Shmini.
However, the story begins with a long introduction describing the husband's visit to Beis Lechem and how his father-in-law kept inducing him to stay another day, another meal, etc., until he stayed five days and, even then, left after his father-in-law asked him to stay another night.
I cannot find any explanation for this introduction. What do we learn from it and why is it relevant to the subsequent events?
Do you have any insights?
I will reply by citing the relevant comments of the Ralbag (who goes through Tanach listing the lessons to be learned from each incident). I translate them without comment.
1. It is not a good idea to take a concubine (in order to satisfy one's desires). See what happened to the tribes of Yisrael in general and to the tribe of Binyamin in particular from the episode of 'Pilegesh be'Giv'ah'.
2. A person should not be excessively strict with his family. For this was what caused the concubine to run away to her father's house, and what ultiMately caused such harm to K'lal Yisrael.
3. A woman should not forsake her husband, but rather bear his harsh words and rebukes, and bend to whatever he wants; not like that concubine ... .
4. One should not stop guests from going on their way, even if one's intentions are to honor them. Rather, when one sees that they wish to leave, one should honor their wishes and let them go.
5. Travelers should not travel during the night, because of the dangers involved.
I will add the next lesson, because of its particular interest in today's perverted world, even though it no longer belongs to the introduction (which you queried).
6. To teach us that if a person is forced to become involved in matters pertaning to immoral conduct, it is preferable to permit adultery with a married woman, than homosexuality!
be'Virchas Kol Tuv