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Romans Reclining on Couches and Dining at a Table
The ancient Hebrews, Egyptians, and Greeks. used to eat sitting on mats spread on the floor.
The Romans actually reclined on couches around a table. The couches were arranged forming three sides of a square. The open side was for the servants who would bring the dishes. The three couches were designated highest, middle, and lowest. The highest was the place of honor and he had no one facing his back. The body would lay diagonally on the couch, the head being near the table, and the feet stretched out toward the back of the couch. The left elbow rested on a cushion which supported the upper part of the body, and the right arm was free to eat the food. This way of dining became common throughout the Greco-Roman world.
"Then Peter, turning about, seeth the disciple whom Jesus loved following; which also leaned on his breast at supper, and said, Lord, which is he that betrayeth thee?"
- John 21:20
"Now there was leaning on Jesus' bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved. Simon Peter therefore beckoned to him, that he should ask who it should be of whom he spake. He then lying on Jesus' breast saith unto him, Lord, who is it? Jesus answered, He it is, to whom I shall give a sop, when I have dipped it. And when he had dipped the sop, he gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon."
- John 13:23-26
"Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he was come from God, and went to God; He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself. After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples' feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded."
- John 13:3-5
"For I say unto you, That none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper."
- Luke 14:24
The Bible mentions a lot regarding dining and supper:
Genesis 43:16 - And when Joseph saw Benjamin with them, he said to the ruler of his house, Bring [these] men home, and slay, and make ready; for [these] men shall dine with me at noon.
John 21:12 - Jesus saith unto them, Come [and] dine. And none of the disciples durst ask him, Who art thou? knowing that it was the Lord.
Luke 11:37 - And as he spake, a certain Pharisee besought him to dine with him: and he went in, and sat down to meat.
Luke 14:12 - Then said he also to him that bade him, When thou makest a dinner or a supper, call not thy friends, nor thy brethren, neither thy kinsmen, nor [thy] rich neighbours; lest they also bid thee again, and a recompence be made thee.
Revelation 19:9 - And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed [are] they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.
John 21:20 - Then Peter, turning about, seeth the disciple whom Jesus loved following; which also leaned on his breast at supper, and said, Lord, which is he that betrayeth thee?
Mark 6:21 - And when a convenient day was come, that Herod on his birthday made a supper to his lords, high captains, and chief [estates] of Galilee;
Revelation 19:17 - And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God;
John 13:2 - And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's [son], to betray him;
Luke 14:17 - And sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now ready.
John 12:2 - There they made him a supper; and Martha served: but Lazarus was one of them that sat at the table with him.
John 13:4 - He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself.
Luke 22:20 - Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup [is] the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.
1 Corinthians 11:21 - For in eating every one taketh before [other] his own supper: and one is hungry, and another is drunken.
Luke 14:16 - Then said he unto him, A certain man made a great supper, and bade many:
Luke 14:24 - For I say unto you, That none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper.
1 Corinthians 11:20 - When ye come together therefore into one place, [this] is not to eat the Lord's supper.