Peter Leithart, summarizing the arguments of John Walton’s Ancient Near Eastern Thought and the Old Testament: Introducing the Conceptual World of the Hebrew Bible, compares the role of prophets in Old Testament Israel and the oracles of other Ancient Near Eastern societies. Israelite prophets often pronounced judgment on the kingdom for violating God’s covenant, while in other societies oracles tended to focus on communicating divine support for kings. Disapproving oracles usually criticized (in Walton’s words) “cultic neglect,” leaving the required ceremonies that appeased the gods unfulfilled. It’s interesting that at least some of the Israelite prophets (and I don’t know them as well as I should) criticized Israel for maintaining the rituals but violating God’s other commandments (for example, in Isaiah 1 and Amos 4).
But while prophecies often denounce sin, they also point to the restoration and redemption in God’s plan for the world. As Leithart notes (mostly quoting Walton),
Finally, though both Israelite and ANE prophets offer hope, in Israel the hope is “generally not intended to indicate divine support for the king. The hope offered is for after the judgment. . . . The contrast is clear: The ‘support’ category in the ancient Near East focused hope primarily on near-term victory and protection, legitimizing the current regime; Israelite aftermath oracles generally focused on the long term because the near future held judgment and defeat for the current regime, which is consequently stigmatized. Ancient Near Eastern prophecies functioned in a context of immediacy and urgency and had no longer-term value. In contrast, the hope that is offered in Israelite prophecy is presented as part of a divine plan that is eschatological and covenant based.”