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In the beginning of the story in particular, Malthace's opinion on the Roman occupation differs greatly from that of Joel and Daniel. Although Malthace agrees with Joel and Daniel that the occupation is hateful, she is much more willing than they are to enjoy life as much as she can, as long as the Romans don't harass her specifically. She asks Joel,
"Do they have to bother us...what use is it to be always making yourself miserable? The Romans won't be here forever. We know that deliverance will come."
Malthace shares with Joel and Daniel the belief that Israel will be freed from Roman rule, but she is comparatively content to wait until that deliverance arrives, living life to the fullest as best she can. Joel and Daniel, on the other hand, are consumed by hatred for the Romans, and long to have a hand in effecting their demise. Daniel has devoted his life to fight for Israel's freedom, and Joel feels that the coming of the promised Messiah is near. Joel believes that the Messiah will lead an army to overthrow the Romans, and dreads being sent to Caparnaum for fear that he will miss out and not be there to follow Him (Chapter 1).
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