Sharing a table with others holds great power. It can, and maybe always does, indicate some level of acceptance, support, and partnership with them. Perhaps that is why family gatherings around holiday tables can be so profoundly rich and so profoundly difficult. For Jews within the Roman Empire, practices of food and table had been an important part of maintaining identity within a context which included constant pressure to assimilate to the majority culture. To those serious about Israel’s covenant, eating with Gentiles carried a whiff of idolatry.