“There shall not cease to be a group from my Ummah that remains firmly steadfast upon the command of Allah.” Explanation of Kitābus-Sunnah from Sunan Ibn Mājah (Hadeeth 7)

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Explanation of the Book of Sunnah, from Sunan Ibn Mājah: Methodology and Belief.

Chapter 1: ‘Following the Sunnah of Allah’s Messenger (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam).’ Based on the explanation of the noble Scholar, the Shaikh, ʿAbdul Muhsin al-ʿAbbād (may Allah preserve him) with additional notes from Abu Khadeejah ʿAbdul-Wāhid.

Hadeeth Number 7.

The author, Muhammad Ibn Yazeed Ibn Mājah Al-Qazweeni (d. 273 AH, rahimahullāh) said: Hishām bin ‘Ammār narrated to us, saying that Yahya bin Hamzah narrated to us, saying that Abu ʿAlqamah Nasr bin ʿAlqamah narrated to us from ʿUmayr ibn al-Aswad from Katheer bin Murrah al-Hadhrami from Abu Hurairah (radiyallahu ʿanhu) that Allah’s Messenger (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam) said:

“لا تزال طائفة من أمتي قوامة على أمر الله عز وجل, لا يضرها من خالفها”

“There shall not cease to be a group from my ummah that remains firmly steadfast upon the command of Allah, the Exalted and Almighty, it cannot be harmed by those who oppose it.” (Reported by Ibn Mājah, Imām Ahmad in his Musnad 2/321, declared hasan by Sheikh al-Albāni in As-Saheehah, no. 1962)


This Hadeeth of Abu Hurairah carries the same meaning as the previous Hadeeth of Qurrah bin Iyyās. His (salallāhu ‘alaihi wasallam) saying, steadfast (قوامة) is a form of emphasis and an stronger expression of the word القيام (to establish) – meaning that they are staunchly and firmly established upon the command of Allah and adhering staunchly and steadfastly to His Shari’ah.

As for his statement, ‘upon the command of Allah,’ then the term ‘command’ includes both that which Allah has obligated, that which He has prohibited, and so on. This means that this aided group is established upon the religion; it abides by the Shar’iah and adheres to it and applies it. So, Allah (the Most High) will preserve this group within the ummah of Muhammad (salallāhu ‘alaihi wasallam) and He will protect it, guide it and grant it success so that it remains and endures. This group is patient with what it receives of harm in the path as it aids Allah’s religion and makes it manifest, preserving it and disseminating the knowledge of the Deen, and calling to it.

The Men in the Chain of Narration

Hishām bin ʿAmmār: he is sudooq (truthful) – this is a level less than thiqah (trustworthy and reliable) – Bukhāri and the companions of the Sunan narrate from him.

Yahya bin Hamzah: he is thiqah (trustworthy and reliable) and all the six books of Hadeeth narrate from him.

Abu ʿAlqamah Nasr bin ʿAlqamah: Al-Hāfidh ibn Hajr (d. 852H rahimahullah) stated in his ‘Taqreeb’ that this narrator is maqbool (accepted), however some of the Imāms of al-Jarh wat Ta’deel declare him to be thiqah such as Duhaym ‘Abdur Rahmān bin Ibraheem, Ibn Hibbān and Adh-Dhahabi. A group of the scholars narrate from him, so the Hadeeth of the likes of such a person as this are not merely considered maqbool where they are not considered as proof unless strengthened or supported by other narrations, rather he is sudooq (truthful), i.e., his Hadeeth are accepted and are considered to be close to being hasan (i.e., good). Imām an-Nasā’i and ibn Mājah narrate from him.

  • * He is ‘Abdur Rahmān bin Ibraheem bin ‘Amr bin Maymoon, Abu Sa’eed, well known as Duhaym (a diminutive). He was a faqeeh (scholar/jurist), the Muhaddith of Shām and the Qādi of Damascus. He is thiqah, a memoriser of Hadeeth and precise – all of the 6 books narrate from him except Imām Muslim and at-Tirmidhi. He was born in the year 170H and died in 245H rahimahullah

ʿUmayr bin al-Aswad: he is thiqah (trustworthy and reliable) and all the 6 books with the exception of Tirmidhi narrate his Hadeeth.

Katheer bin Murrah al-Hadrami: he is thiqah (trustworthy and reliable), Imām al-Bukhāri narrates from him in ‘Juz al-Qirā’a Khalf al-Imām’ and so do the compilers of the Sunan.

Abu Hurairah: He is ʿAbdur Rahmān ibn Sakhr ad-Dowsi (radiyallahu ʿanhu), the most prolific narrator of Hadeeth. Al-Hāfidh as-Suyooti (d.911H rahimahullah) mentioned in ‘Tadreeb ar-Rāwi’ regarding Abu Hurairah:

“Abu Hurairah narrated 5374 Hadeeth of Allah’s Messenger (salallāhu ‘alaihi wasallam). Of these 5374 Hadeeth:

  1. The two sheikhs (i.e., Bukhāri and Muslim) both narrated 325
  2. Bukhāri alone narrated 93
  3. Muslim alone narrated 189

More than 800 men narrated from Abu Hurairah. Imām ash-Shāfi’ee said that Abu Hurairah is the greatest of the memorisers and preservers of those who narrated Hadeeth in his era.”

The Level of Authenticity of this Hadeeth

This Hadeeth of the Tā’ifatul Mansoora (the aided group) has reached us through numerous chains of transmission. From these chains of transmission is that from Qurrah bin Iyyās and also that which is reported in the two Saheehs (of Bukhāri and Muslim) and other than them such as the Hadeeth of Muʿāwiyyah (radiyallahu ʿanhu). Therefore, this particular hadeeth is Hasan (good) due to Abu ʿAlqamah Nasr bin ʿAlqamah, but the text of the hadeeth is Saheeh, and there are authentic (Saheeh) ahādeeth that are established from the Prophet (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam) in the Saheehayn (i.e., Bukhāri and Muslim) and in other than them.

This Hadeeth is from the Zawā’id (Additions) of Ibn Mājah

This means that this Hadeeth is from those narrations that only Ibn Mājah narrates from Abu Hurairah (i.e., the text itself is found in other ahādeeth, but not from Abu Hurairah), and none of the other collectors of Hadeeth have narrated it from Abu Hurairah, rather they narrate it from other Sahābah– in the Saheehayn and other collections – and some of them are narrated from Muʿāwiyyah (radiyallahu ʿanhu).

This is why al-Busayri, i.e., Ahmad ibn Abi Bakr al-Busayri (rahimahullah) included this Hadeeth in his Zawā’id of Ibn Mājah (known as Misbāh uz-Zujājah fee Zawā’id Ibn Mājah) with the methodology he explained at the beginning of his work: that if a Hadeeth comes from a particular Companion, and it also comes from other Sahābah, then he (al-Busayri) includes it in the Zawā’id because it is from those narrations that are only reported by Ibn Mājah from that particular Companion. Therefore, this particular Hadeeth is from the Zawā’id of Ibn Mājah because it is only Ibn Mājah who has narrated it from Abu Hurairah (although the text of the Hadeeth is the same as that reported in the other collections).

Giving Consideration to the Hadeeth with Respect to the Sahābi who Narrates it

That which is well known is that the scholars of Hadeeth (the Muhadditheen) give consideration to the Hadeeth by way of the Sahābi who reports it – so if they wish to mention the reference point for a particular Hadeeth, they refer back to the Sahābi who narrated it. However, if a Hadeeth is reported from another companion, then this other narration is it is said: shawāhid (i.e., it is a further witness to the original Hadeeth).

The likes of this has been stated by al-Hāfidh ibn Hajar al-Asqalāni in ‘Fath al-Bāri’ (his explanation of Saheeh al-Bukhāri) concerning the Hadeeth:

“I have been commanded to fight the people until they testify that none has the right to be worshipped except Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.”*

Ibn Hajr explained: This Hadeeth is ghareeb al-isnād (meaning that at some point in the chain of narration there is only one narrator reporting it from the narrator who came before him). That is because Shuʿbah (Ibn al-Hajjāj) narrates only from Wāqid (as stated by Ibn Hibbān). Then from Shuʿbah the narration is ʿAzeez (meaning there are 2 narrators): Haramiyy and ʿAbdul Malik bin as-Sabbāh narrate from him. Then it is also ʿAzeez from Haramiyy – and the two narrators who report from him are al-Musnadi and Ibraheem bin Muhammad bin ʿArʿarah. From Ibraheem we find that Abu ʿAwānah, Ibn Hibbān, al-Ismāʿeeli and others recorded this Hadeeth in their books.

Going back to the second narrator who narrates from Shuʿbah, and that is ‘Abdul Malik, then the narration is ghareeb from ʿAbdul Malik – there is only one narrator who narrates from him and that is Abu Ghassān Mālik bin ʿAbdil Wāhid, the sheikh of Imām Muslim, nevertheless both Bukhāri and Muslim agreed upon its authenticity (despite its being ghareeb), and it is not found in the Musnad of Imām Ahmad despite its vast size. (End)

This is actually a refutation of the madhhab of the Muʿtazilah, the Ashʿariyyah, al-Ikhwān al-Muslimeen and the other misguided groups who say that unless the Hadeeth is transmitted from multiple narrators at each level of the chain of the narration (i.e. it is mutawātir), then it cannot be relied upon, especially if it relates to the ʿAqeedah. However, here we have Bukhāri and Muslim, the two great Imāms of Hadeeth, both declaring it to be Saheeh. This is because the scholars of Hadeeth say that as long as a Hadeeth fulfils the five conditions of authenticity, then it is acceptable to Ahlus Sunnah, whether it is in ʿAqeedah or other than it. These five conditions are:

  1. اتصال السند – The chain of narration must be connected, from the narrator of the Hadeeth all the way back to the Sahābi from Allah’s Messenger (salallāhu ‘alaihi wasallam).
  2. عدالة الرواة – All of the narrators in the chain of narration have ʿadālah, i.e., that they are trustworthy.
  3. ضبط الرواة – The narrators must all be accurate and precise in that which they narrate, and this must be at every level of the chain of narration.
  4. عدم الشذوذ – The narration does not oppose another narration that is stronger than it.
  5. عدم العلة – There should be no hidden defect that would necessitate the Hadeeth being inauthentic.

This clearly shows that the science of Hadeeth is very specialised, and its veracity, strength and precision cannot be matched in the history of humanity, there is nothing like it. Not in the collection of the history of the ancients, the Persians, Greeks, Egyptians, the history of the Iron Age, the Stone Age or the Ice Age, right up until today. In the sciences of collection of the history of humans endeavours, actions and statements, there is nothing comparable in history to what we have in terms of the verifications of the isnād (chain of narration) and the Sciences of Hadeeth.

This is affirmed by the Orientalists themselves – those who studied Islām over the last eight centuries in order to critique it. Many of them acknowledge and must concede that the science of Hadeeth in Islām cannot be equalled in any other religion, culture or heritage.

The ahadeeth in the Musnad of Imām Ahmad (rahimahullāh) are over 40 000 in number, and the number that has been printed to date reaches 30,000. This is a vast work, yet still, this particular narration has not been reported in it by way of Ibn ʿUmar (radiyallahu ʿanhumā), rather it is found in the Musnad of Imām Ahmad from Abu Hurairah (and also from a number of the Sahābah).

  • * This Hadeeth is reported in Bukhāri (65) and Muslim (36, 22) from Ibn ‘Umar (radiyallāhu ‘anhumā). It is also mutawātir (many narrators at every level of the chain of narration), and has been reported by a large group of Companions. See As-Saheehah, no. 407.


والحمد لله رب العالمين وصلى الله على نبينا محمد وعلى آله وصحبه أجمعين

سبحانك اللهم وبحمدك أشهد أن لا إله إلا أنت، أستغفرك وأتوب إليك

Abu Khadeejah Abdul-Wāhid.
Copyright 2024.

This article was transcribed by Umm Maryam (may Allah reward her) from the classes of Abu Khadeejah (SalafiSounds.com). Please share it with others.

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