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The Lord Roars

Recovering the Prophetic Voice for Today

series: Theological Explorations for the Church Catholic

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The world cries out for a prophetic word to the chaos, unrest, and destructiveness of our times. Can the biblical prophets speak into our world today?

Old Testament ethicist M. Daniel Carroll R. demonstrates that learning from the prophets can make us better prepared for Christian witness. In this guide to the ethical material of Old Testament prophetic literature, Carroll highlights key ethical concerns of the three prophets most associated with social critique--Amos, Isaiah, and Micah--showing their relevance for those who wish to speak with a prophetic voice today.

The Lord Roars focuses on the pride that generates injustice and the religious life that legitimates an unacceptable status quo--both of which bring judgment--as well as the ethical importance of the visions of restoration after divine judgment. Each of these components in the biblical text makes its own particular call to readers to respond in an appropriate manner. The book also links biblical teaching with prophetic voices of the modern era. It is well suited to professors and students of the Old Testament and ethics. It will also benefit Christian leaders, including those involved in justice and mercy ministries.

Series Preface
1. Reimagining Reality: The Power of the Prophetic Text
2. Prophetic Critique: Deconstructing the Unacceptable
3. "Let Justice Roll Down": Worship and Social Responsibility
4. Hope for the Future: The Relevance of Eschatology
Epilogue: Toward the Prophetic Vision for Today


"In The Lord Roars, Daniel Carroll, easily one of our best scholars and teachers on the prophets, offers a concise and erudite--indeed, ideal--introduction to these all-important messengers of God. Carroll focuses on selected texts from Amos, Isaiah, and Micah while at the same time engaging everything from Don Quijote and Charles Dickens to immigration, the Inquisition, liberation theology, and much, much more. The Prophetic Voice for Today, indeed! And it has been fully recovered too, thanks to Carroll's masterful treatment."

Brent A. Strawn, professor of Old Testament and professor of law, Duke University

"Perhaps some of us employ the adjective prophetic hastily or uncritically, but many more of us are reluctant to heed the words of prophets--even the prophets identified in the Bible. With The Lord Roars, Carroll demonstrates why and how biblical prophets speak to a myriad of social issues, including many that we presently face. His rigorous exegesis, historical analysis, and cultural awareness converge to give Bible readers a better understanding of Scripture's prophetic tradition and how it applies right now."

Dennis R. Edwards, associate professor of New Testament, North Park Theological Seminary

"The Lord Roars has helped me see how the prophetic imagination in the canonical biblical text can orient my motivations to see theologically and work ethically toward a better world. From a hermeneutic of trust, Carroll invites the reader to carefully consider what the word of God offers as a witness to a more just and less violent world conceived through theo-poetic justice. Manifestly, Carroll's proposal challenges today's Westernized Christian visions of a world trapped in left-wing and right-wing political ideologies."

Oscar García-Johnson, associate professor of theology and Latinx studies and chief of diversity, equity, and inclusion, Fuller Theological Seminary

"The Lord Roars offers a powerful call toward living a prophetically formed ethic grounded in the biblical prophets Amos, Isaiah, and Micah. This call is desperately needed in our fractured world. Carroll's unique lens of poetics and literary imagination offers a new way to encounter the prophets. Readers are empowered not only to read and learn but to respond responsibly. This means critiquing the structures of human arrogance and injustice in economic and sociopolitical dimensions, identifying the way worship and social responsibility are intertwined, and finding hope in the ashes through the prophetic vision of plenty, justice, and peace. The roar of the Lord is a call we all need to hear and heed."

Beth M. Stovell, professor of Old Testament, Ambrose Seminary

"Works are typically found on the biblical prophets or contextual theology or prophetic Christianity, but rarely is one author capable of addressing all three subjects. This work is remarkable in that it combines the expertise of one of the world's leading scholars on the prophets and social ethics with his deep knowledge of Latino/a theology. The Lord Roars will challenge those who consider themselves prophetic to be more biblical, and those who claim to be biblical will be challenged by the prophets."

Bo H. Lim, professor of Old Testament, Seattle Pacific University

"Danny Carroll weds his deep engagement with literature and his lifelong attention to justice to recover prophetic imagination for the church. For those who no longer know the language of prophetic imagination, who doubt the Old Testament's authority on today's questions of justice, or who misappropriate the prophetic word on behalf of political agendas, Carroll opens the text's power to critique and to energize toward justice. With scholarly acumen and humility, this exploration is biting but also offers hope. In light of today's many pursuits of justice, this book provides a clarion call for the church to fire its imagination toward a justice that is truly grounded in the prophetic message, is lived out in the life of Christ, and is now passed on to the church. For anyone praying, speaking, or acting toward a vision of justice, this book is a must-read."

Lissa M. Wray Beal, professor of Old Testament, Wycliffe College, University of Toronto

"A divided world fails to hear prophetic voices and is poorer for it. Danny Carroll offers a timely reflection on and study of Scripture that calls for the voice of God to be expressed through the prophetic imagination into the world. Deeply rooted in the Old Testament prophets, Carroll brings the possibility of God's truth to impart important instruction for the contemporary church."

Soong-Chan Rah, Robert Munger Professor of Evangelism, Fuller Theological Seminary

"Carroll masterfully portrays the ancient prophetic imagination to contemporary readers through Isaiah, Amos, and Micah, providing a supremely relevant word concerning how prophetic literature must influence the ethical vision of God's people in God's world today. Carroll's book is an invaluable, biblically faithful resource for Christians who wish to embody a contemporary prophetic voice to push back against the ethical failures of the Christian church, speak out against injustice, and confront oppressive authorities and structures. Carroll provides a particularly timely and restorative message for modern communities that have seized, clung to, and identified with factional ideologies that engender impiety. This book is a must-read for those committed to reclaiming the prophetic voice by proclaiming the vision of the prophets."

Dominick S. Hernández, associate professor of Old Testament, Talbot School of Theology, Biola University

"Carroll takes us to the heart of the ancient prophetic message, focusing on justice, worship, and hope. The power of this book lies in the dialogue it creates between ancient and contemporary prophets. As readers we are constantly forced to consider the message of the prophets in light of present realities, and the response demanded echoes that of the prophets themselves: nothing short of repentance."

Mark J. Boda, professor of Old Testament, McMaster Divinity College

The Author

  1. M. Daniel Carroll R.

    M. Daniel Carroll R.

    M. Daniel Carroll R. (Rodas) (PhD, University of Sheffield) is Scripture Press Ministries Professor of Biblical Studies and Pedagogy at Wheaton College and Graduate School in Wheaton, Illinois. He previously taught for many years at El Seminario...

    Continue reading about M. Daniel Carroll R.


Outreach 2023 Resource of the Year (Theology and Biblical Studies)

"M. Daniel Carroll R.'s potent book, The Lord Roars, is a reader-friendly sketch of the prophetic vision that can capture the attention of the current generation of almost-Christians. In this book, the unacceptable is deconstructed, worship and social vision are connected, and a biblical picture of the kingdom of God stirs the imagination of all who care to listen. What we need most is an unwavering honesty about our world and our nation, and the prophets have the courage to be that honest."

Scot McKnight,