15 You shall make the planks for the Mishkan of acacia wood, upright.
v’-a-SEE-ta et ha-k’-ra-SHEEM la-mish-KAN a-TZAY shi-TEEM o-m’-DEEM
טו וְעָשִׂיתָ אֶת־הַקְּרָשִׁים לַמִּשְׁכָּן עֲצֵי שִׁטִּים עֹמְדִים׃
26:15 You shall make the planks
Why is the definite article ‘the’ used in reference to the planks used in the construction of the Mishkan? Rashi answers that this refers to specific planks with great significance. He cites the tradition that Yaakov planted acacia trees in Egypt in preparation for the redemption, and commanded his sons to take these trees with them upon exiting Egypt hundreds of years in the future. In this way, Yaakov was not only preparing the materials for the future building of the Mishkan, but also imparting a message, teaching the coming generations of his descendants that their exile is temporary. Later in history, throughout the bitter exile, the children of Yaakov have similarly longed continuously and prepared for their redemption and return to their homeland. How fortunate are we to witness the beginning of this final redemption.