Can one learn to whoop? Is there a system to help anybody whoop? Rev. Jasper Williams answers this question with an unequivocal yes. He states that anyone who has been called to preach has been given by God the ability to whoop.
This system is meant to help one learn how. Needless to say I was a little skeptical. But I went ahead and looked at this tape, video 10, in Jasper Williams Pastor and Preaching System. You can purchase the system at this link.
Background on Whooping
There is very little on the subject of “whooping” available on the web or in book form to preachers at the present time. You might be interested in looking at my series of posts on the subject at this link. Also you should look forward to Rev. Martha Simmons forthcoming book on the subject.
Like any good presenter, Rev. Williams defines whooping. His definition includes anything that God gives to you individually as a preacher to help you celebrate the gospel in your sermons. this definition is a little broader than what many of us think of when we think of whooping. But that very broadness is why he can make the statement that “anyone can whoop.”
I would add that usually whooping is seen as the introduction of musicality to the preaching moment.
Your Sermonic Whoop is Individual
At any rate, A very valuable component of Williams’ system is that he shows you a wide variety of very different whoopers. This emphasizes his major point that one preacher’s whoop is different from another preacher’s whoop.
Williams even goes so far as to say that in his early years he “copied” C. L. Franklin’s whoop too much instead of trying to find his own whoop. This point, namely that we should find our own whoop, is emphasized over and over again by Williams in the video.
In the video Rev Williams gives whooping theory which he calls “whoopology.” I gleaned the following fundamental components of Williams’ understanding of whooping from the video.
- Anyone can whoop. – As noted above, whooping is that element that God has given to each preacher that allows that preacher to celebrate the gospel.
- Unique to You – Related to the above point, no one else has your whoop. You are the only one who can do what you do
- Whooping is Gravy and not Meat – Here Williams emphasizes that preachers must give some solid content before one whoops. The whoop can not cover up the lack of a full sermonic meal.
- Do Not Strain in the Whoop – You should not yell or strain in whooping. Williams notes that you can do much more with your voice when your voice is at a natural pitch and volume. Williams states that the whoop is sweeter when it is more mellow. Volume is not the point. Yelling almost kills a whoop, according to Williams.
- The Whooping Curve – Sermons that end in “whooping” should drop in intensity when entering the whoop. More below.
What is the “whooping curve?” That is the fact that many sermons that use a whoop make sure that they are not at the height of their vocal intensity when entering the whoop of the sermon.
Rev. William’s understanding of preaching begins the sermon at a lower intensity then slowly builds up to a climax before the whoop section of the sermon. Then there is a drop in intensity. This is to make sure that your voice will not be strained in the whoop section which will ensure that you can continue to raise the intensity level through the whoop.
You must not go into the whoop at too high a level of intensity, you must have a drop in intensity as you go into the whoop. Then you build back up. If you go into your whoop at too high an intensity there is no place to go. I was listening to C. L. Franklin in the sermon entitled “Press on.” You find him at a high level of intensity. Then there is a drop in intensity right before the whoop. Then inside the whoop he builds to the final climax.
Steps to Implementing Whooping in Your Preaching
Rev. Williams does not just give theory, but he also gives some steps that a preacher should follow if that preacher wishes to introduce whooping into his or her preaching.
The first and perhaps most important thing one should do is practice. Practice in your car, practice in your shower. Also folks practice in the bathroom. Williams notes that practicing on the toilet is where many have done a lot of practicing. You want to practice. As you practice you must listen to yourself critically. Williams notes that when it sounds good to you it is ready for use.
Second, one should listen to other whoopers. This is akin to the jazz musician who listens to others. You do not copy but you emulate others. This is kind of a sticky thing. But you must preach your own style of Whoop. Seeing different styles helps a preacher find onesself.
And that is step three, you must find your own whoop. What is natural to you. God has built you physically and spiritually for a certain type of proclamation. Williams notes that we must preach in that way.
Finally, we should look for opportunities to incorporate “whooping” into our preaching. Because, in Williams thought, whooping is meant to articulate the joy of the Gospel, we must as preachers do it. Joy in the Gospel is an important component of our preaching ministry.
I think that the whooping system could spend a little more time in “step by step” instructions. But I began implementing elements of musicality into my preaching after looking at this video so it was helpful. The drastically different approaches to whooping also opens ones eyes to different takes on whooping.
However, I think that preachers who are in Whooping traditions probably already know most of what you will find on this video. And those of us who are not from those traditions probably could glean alot just from listening to great whoopers.
Be that as it may, Williams’ system can help to at least point you in the right direction and it is relatively inexpensive at 30 dollars. So I would encourage you to go and look at the video.
Starting to Whoop
Learn how to whoop with this unique resource.
Preachers of all abilities can increase their effectiveness by implementing musicality in their preaching. This resource will help you do just that.
EBook Immediately Downloadable
21 thoughts on “Jasper Williams Whooping System”
I was writing an advertisement for my gospel music learning package to go to church pastors and googled “whoop” to see if that was the right spelling. I came across your page. Awesome product idea! This is what they really call “niching!” You got it!
Sorry I’m coming a bit late to comment on the subject article on whooping. I think whooping is a dying art and maybe well it should be. I have enjoyed the preaching of some “popular” whoopers and have been more blessed by some great preachers without that distinct ability as well. What I’ve learned is that the effect of straight up expository preaching seems, from where I sit, more authentic and more effective. I do not have the ability nor the right to judge any man who says he is speaking for our Lord in his physical absence here. The Saviour I know and love (in his own words0 would not want us to, in anyway, project the “flesh”.
Some will say, whooping is not out of the “flesh” or, indeed, self; they may be correct. No one knows a man’s heart except the One who created it (heart). The question that begs an answer is if there is something efficacious or needful then why do so many black have the same whooping style? and why learn how to whoop like another brother or sister? If it is of God, shouldn’t your whoop be your own?
Personally, I think one must be careful with “accessorizing the Gospel”. I know how important “soul” and “style” are to us as a people, but mark my words, this too will pass. There will come a time (pre-apostasy) when the great need will be for someone to stand flat-footed, without polished fingernails, nor a twenty-button suit and say what thus saith the Lord.. I’m just saying…
Thank you for your comment, and I don’t think this is the right place for this discussion, but …
I want to ask a question, whooping is a vocal embelshment, as you have noted, but it is not the only one. Do you have the same problems with all vocal embelishments?
How does your “unadorned” Gospel sermon sound? Is it without any runs? Is it without any vocal inflection? Is it without any dynamic change?
Simply put all of these (and much more) are vocal enhancements. Would you have the same problems with them?
From my perspective, whooping like all of these other enhancements can be problematic or helpful when used correctly. Is it a necessity? no… Is it always problematic? I don’t think so…but we can disagree here…
In addition, I would encourage you to read the other posts I have written on the subject as well as listen to the audio…specifically whooping with integrity…
I think that the whoop is a part of the sermon that lifts the spirt of Gods people. I don’t understand how. but neither do I understand how a brown cow eating green grass brings forth white milk, but I use milk for my cheeros. I like soul food principally, but I also enjoy chinese and mexican. The Body of Christ is diversified. If you whoop fine as long as you add content to your message. If you dont whoop fine. But don’t critizie those of us that do whoop,just attend the church of your choose and live for The Lord with all of your might for the time of His coming is at hand! Prayerfully submitted Pastor Edwards
Growing up in church in Alabama, I don’t believe I heard one sermon that wasn’t closed in a whoop. Believe me, I’ve heard many great whoopers such as Rev. Leroy Elliot. I’ve also heard a few that had not quite found their niche in whooping. Nevertheless, they tried!
My father is a pastor and I remember asking him when I was a young boy “why do you whoop?” He answered to me that it was his shout. I don’t think you can argue much with a man or woman who gets excited about preaching the gospel. The point being, I don’t believe that a whoop is as it is much for the mass as it is for the minister. I wouldn’t serve a God that I couldn’t feel from time to time. Preaching the gospel Sunday in and Sunday out, you need to express the moving of the holy spirit in some form and a lot of black preachers do it the the art/gift of whooping.
On the flip side, I have heard great expositor preaching such as that of Dr. Timothy J. Winters who doesn’t necessarily whoop but still has the same effect and results of that of a great whooper. The bottom line is, the Holy Spirit is going to use you the best way to reach his people. A minister must first love saving souls. When a preacher brings the word whether it’s through whooping or through expository preaching, at the end it’s the lost soul that matters.
The real purpose for preaching the Gospel is to proclaim the TRUTH. We often make the mistake of trying to substitute philosophy, psycology and embelishing in place of the HOLY SPIRIT. Yes, people should see your passion when you preach…but “TUNING UP” has nothing at all to do with passion or it can never take the place of the HOLY GHOST. The truth is Whooping stirs up the emotional flesh of the congregation in order to get them excited. The problem is the people get excited but leave the church the same as when they came in. The bible say that the HOLY SPIRIT will convict the world and guide them into all truth not whoopin! I have never read anything in the bible about whooping, truth is there is NO biblical basis or foundation for whooping…so the question is why do we do it and why do we waste our time TEACHING it. Is it because we wana hear those word “YOU sure did preach”. That is NOT what God has called HIS minister to do. WE are suppose to preach in a way that gives GOD all the GLORY and NOT ourselves. JUST PREACH THE WORD and the HOLY SPIRIT will do the rest, He does not need our philosophy, pscycology,socioalogy or embelishment by whooping. He say if “I” be lifted up I will draw all men to me.
I think you have made some good points…but good preaching addresses the whole of humanity not just the “intellectual dimension.” Good preaching addresses the intellect and the heart. Good preaching addresses the emotive dimension and the intellectual dimension.
Preaching is seeking to foster an encounter with the truth…this goes beyond proclamation to ushering in and experience with the truth. If we are not to address both he intellect and the emotive then why have songs at all? Why not turn the preaching moment into a lecture?
Let me also ask is there a biblical foundation for using alliteration? What about quoting the great hymns? What about preaching from a manuscript? Is there biblical foundation for that? Would you condemn that as well? Using a manuscript becuase there is no evidence of preachers using them in the Bible?
Simply put, we don’t have an audio copy of how proclamation was done in the New Testament at all anyway, so it is speculation to assume that it was simply a plain unadorned speech…
I thank you again for your comment, but I think you make the mistake of assuming that if you whoop…you are not uplifting Christ and you are not preaching the word and you are not depending on the Holy Spirit. Certainly that is true in many cases, but not all of them…
Wow! This is a very interesting topic, and let’s give Mr. Cox some credit for addressing a relatively controversial subject in the church community; for starters, imparting truth should be the central focus for those of us who have been ordained by God to proclaim his Word. As ministers we should be more concerned with rightly dividing the text versus how we deliver the text; unfortunately, some ministers can be so in-tune with how they sound and be out-of-tune with the truth in the text, and never give any substance from the Word of God. In my opinion it is preposterous to criticize a minister on his or her style of delivery, God can use any style or methods to deliver his Word, that’s why we have the media of televison, radio, internet, newspapers, etc., all of these are different methods of delivering a message, either is superior to the other. If a minister wants to “whoop” whoop on as long as you deliver truth, if a minister wants to stand flat footed sort of speak and “teach” teach on as long as you deliver truth! Our God loves diversity, and he loves you and how you do what he has called you to do!!!
Thank you for your response. It is true that many preachers engage in what Rev. Martha Simmons, one of the experts on whooping, calls the “dark side of whooping.” That is where whooping is used to cover up sloth in preparation. Ultimately, when done at its best, whooping is simply a way to “embody” the truth of the message that the preacher threw down in the sermon.
This is indeed an interesting discourse on the topic of preaching. It is important for us to understand as shepherds as well as sheep that Paul made an emphatic point when illustrating the Church. He noted in 1 Corinthians 12 that we (as the church) are the body. Two parts of the body: the head (which is Christ) and the body (the church. The body must always respond to what the head tells it to do. Then Paul goes on to tell us there are differences of administration, but the same Spirit. I said that to point this out: it is ok to have different administrations of proclaiming what the Lord has deposited inside you to give. The Lord’s mission is large enough, believe me, to make allowances for such differences. Let us not get entangled with these differences, rather, let us stay focused on the outcome, “feeding God’s sheep.” Lastl, I want to point out to Brother Vaughn (and to others who erroneously refer to this scripture in John 12)the phrasing being “lifted up” does not refer to an exaltation of Jesus, but actually to what manner of death He should die (as it goes on to clarify in the very next verse). I love you all in the spirit of Christ.
Um… what about just preaching the word?? I grew up under whooping preachers, and I get it. It appeals to the ‘soul train’ element in our churches. But there are folk nowadays, as a result of generations old coonery, that believe they haven’t even received a word from God until the preacher stands there hollering. Even if his hollering is completely void of substance. I’m not trying to be disrespectful. I believe it is a important part of our history as a people. But why can’t we just let it be that?? A part of our history. It adds nothing to the word of God, and really serves as a distraction if you think about it. If we spent as much time on expository preaching, making sure we’re properly and accurately issuing the word of God, folk might not flap and jump around, but they got the TRUTH. We don’t need gimmicks and tricks. The word of God says don’t add nothin, and don’t take anything away from it. God’s word is powerful enough in and of itself to do the ‘trick’. Every drop of effort we exert trying to feed into and stimulate people’s senses, that’s energy that takes aways from fully, rightly dividing the word of truth. TEACHING folk to whoop is as counterproductive, in my opinion, as teaching them how to roll a joint in the name of Jesus. It’s no different than the whole black Jesus discussion. People with pictures of soul train Jesus holding a lamb with a dasheke on. Or the Soul Train last supper. That stuff is ignorant, and teaches young black saints to focus in on nonsense, that has nothing to do with the power and sovereignty of a UNIVERSAL God. Not just a black God, and not just a soul train God. We need to get away from old negro heresies and start preaching and teaching TRUTH. Not monkeytown antics.
I just be came a pastor and i would like to whoop i am from the old school.
“Rev. William’s understanding of preaching begins the sermon at a lower intensity then slowly builds up to a climax before the whoop section of the sermon. Then there is a drop in intensity.”
I have heard it likened to a symphony where the music builds slowly into a tension that leads to a crescando and then a release; tension and release, tension and release. There is definitely a rythm in a good sermon. It can’t be all at high intensity and volume, nor can it be all low intensity conversational either. This is because not merely the intellect but also the emotions and passions are engaged whenever we open the scriptures.
Why do you have his video posted can’t you make pone of your own. Why are you using another pastor’s work and do you have his permission.
Rev. Cox, the link for purchasing Rev. Williams system is not working. Could you provide another link? I would like to purchase this system. Thanks for this wonderful post! This is really encouraging for young preachers, like myself, who have grown up with whooping preachers and been blessed by them, but have also grown up in an American church that celebrates multiculturalism. Sometimes we can experience something of an identity crisis in terms of style in preaching. I am a son of the black church, but feel called to multi-ethnic ministry. However, I want to embody the best of the black preaching tradition (incl. whooping), believing that we have something good and constructive to offer to multicultural ministry.
I do not know how to purchase the system…i would suggest that you contact his church, they may have some copies left…
Why do I post videos from others? They are put up on youtube for that very purpose. Did I get permission? everyone, including myself, who puts videos up on youtube can turn off sharing or not if they wish…
Why do I not create my own? I do and if you go to youtube you can find them….and if you wish you can share them as well..
whooping ,is the gravy of the black preacher, the greatest giants of black gospel preachers not only had something to say however they celebrated with there annointing,rev.jasper williams, dr.ev hill,de.manuel scott sr. dr.b.t. newman,and others celebrated. celebrate,your preaching brothers,and your members will celebrate with you! thank you pastor williams,and brothers just celebrate!
I here what you are saying, I am a whooper” and let me correct you, from the Bible, but first let me say this when you catch people; even preacher downing whooper Many time it is because they can’nt whoo; A whooping preacher has the ability” to teach, preach, and whoo, I know; because I do all Three; with the aid of the Holy Ghost, and I all way feed my people the word of God, before I whoo, and while I whoo, some preacher whoo, just to whoo, But I whoo because I cannot help my self, But lets look at the Bible and see what it says and may be we can put an end to this; look with me please, in the book of Ephesians; 4:11-12, If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen, Now I Preach the word; and I know that when I preach, I’m A servant of God” because I love!!! God; it not about Emotion, if it was I guess we should’nt sing, Think You,
I am very late in coming to your site and frankly I am enjoying the discourse of all of those who have added their two or three cents into the discussion. Actually I am from what some would call the Bible Belt (North Carolina) where the heart of preaching has always been “whooping”. Both men and women have and are crafting the art and I am glad they have.
We have moved I think into teaching on our worship day because it is so difficult to get people out on other days and nights where teaching should go on. When teaching my members often tell me that they wish they could raise their hand in the middle of the sermon – why? Because those same members do not attend Bible Study Classes!
At my first introduction to Bible College it was my understanding that Preaching the Gospel message was a drawing part of fishing (the actual throwing out the life line and drawing the fish in)(those who were moved by the message). Then there would be teaching which would cause the newly converted to become rooted and grounded in the Word of God. I’m not sure if this is in fact good theology but it sure worked for those of old and one additional matter, whooping is not common only to African American Preachers check out the White Pentecostal Church of course they inherited this from the Azusa Street Revival which was started by a Black Preacher.
Let’s just become educated, understanding and productive in winning souls to Christ and not just gtting members to the church…
I have enjoyed reading the comments on this topic. If I may add, any preaching, no matter the style, should be based on sound biblical teaching because without it, the sermon is like a gravy sandwich. It smells good when you heat it up but there’s no meat in it. I also believe there is a time and place for everything and a good preacher, led by the Spirit of God, knows when to whoop and when not to whoop.
May God bless us all.