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The Life Of Jesus Christ For The Young by John Newton

THE BETRAYAL FORETOLD AT THE SUPPER

When Jesus had thus said, he was troubled in spirit, and testified, and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me. Then the disciples looked one on another, doubting of whom he spake. 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. And after the sop Satan entered into him. Then said Jesus unto him, That thou doest, do quickly. Now no man at the table knew for what intent he spake this unto him. For some of them thought, because Judas had the bag, that Jesus had said unto him, Buy those things that we have need of against the feast; or, that he should give something to the poor. He then having received the sop went immediately out: and it was night. -- St. John xiii: 21-30.

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NOTE BY THE ARTIST

Comment has already been made upon the custom prevailing at this time of reclining at meat. We are aware, from other sources of information, that in partaking of the Passover, the attitude of standing had, as a point of ritual, long been abandoned in favor of the recumbent posture, and this is directly evidenced by the words of the text (v: 23 and 25), which are only compatible with the supposition that on the present occasion the guest-chamber was furnished with couches which ran around the three sides of the table in the usual manner. Authorities differ as to which was regarded as the |highest seat| some maintaining that this was the outermost place on the right-hand couch; others, again, preferring the arrangement followed in the painting, where Jesus occupies the centre.

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