“Repentance of the person of knowledge from his error and an innovator from his innovation” – Ahmad Ibn Hanbal (d.241H), Ibn Muflih (d.763H), Ibrāhīm At-Taymī (d.72H)

Repentance of a person of knowledge from his [open] mistake.
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Repentance of a person of knowledge from his [open] mistake.

It was mentioned to Abu Abdillāh Ahmad Ibn Hanbal that a man from the people of knowledge made a mistake and erred, and that he had repented from his mistake. So Imām Ahmad said:

“Allāh will not accept that from him until repentance and recantation from his [erroneous] saying is made apparent —and he announces that he said such-and-such, and that he has repented to Allāh, the most High, for his saying and has recanted from it. If he makes that apparent, then his repentance is accepted.”

Then Abu Abdillāh (Ahmad Ibn Hanbal) recited:

“Except for those who repent and make right their mistake and openly declare [the truth which they concealed].” (Al-Baqarah 2:160)

(Collected by Al-Hāfidh Ibn Rajab (died 736H) in Dhayl ‘Alā Tabaqāt Al-Hanābilah, 1/300)

Al-‘Allamah Ibn Muflih (rahimahullāh) said: “As for innovation, then repentance from it is by affirming it, and to recant from it, and to believe in the opposite of what he believed previously…” Then he said: “It has been narrated from Al-Marrūdhī that Ahmad Ibn Hanbal said:

“When a innovator repents, then leave him in that state for a year until his repentance is verified to be correct.”

He used as a proof the narration of Ibrāhīm At-Taymī when the people differed with him concerning Sabīgh Ibn ‘Asal (the innovator) when he warned from sitting with him. So after a year had passed, he said, “Now you may sit with him but be cautious of him.”

(See Al-Ādāb Ash-Sharī’ah, 1/137)

Ibrāhīm Ibn Yazīd Ibn Shuraik At-Taymī (Abu Asmā) was an imām from the tābi’īn, an example to the people, a faqīh, a worshipper from Kūfah. He narrated from ‘Umar, ‘Ā’ishah, Abu Dharr and the major Sahābah. Those narrated from him include: Al-Hakam, Ibrāhīm An-Nakha’ī, Al-A’mash and his reports are in all six books of hadīth: Bukhārī, Muslim, Abu Dāwūd, At-Tirmidhī, Ibn Mājah and An-Nasā’ī, as well many other books. He died in 72H, rahimahullāh.

تهذيب الكمال 2/232، السير 5/60-62

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