Expect a gravity force exerted on something when it’s close to a mass. Re-imagine the thing extracted from its environment by choosing to replace the mass by a gravity force exerted on the thing.
The re-imagining is simpler, and useful if the tension force is chosen so that it has the same effect as the stretched surroundings that it replaced.
How the gravity force varies is well known, and it’s important to be able to predict.
The pattern of how the force varies with the distance is also important, whether you show this using arrows or using a graph.