Some Sufis claim the hadeeth below proofs that when Isa (Jesus) comes back to earth he will go to the grave of the prophet Mohammed and make tawassul through him.
From Abu Hurayra: I heard the Prophet say: “By the one in whose hand is Abu al-Qasim’s soul, Isa ibn Maryam shall descend as a just and wise ruler. He shall destroy the cross, slay the swine, eradicate discord and grudges, and money shall be offered to him but he will not accept it. Then he shall stand at my graveside and say: Ya Muhammad! and I will answer him.”
Abu Yala relates it with a sound chain of narration in his Musnad (Dar al-Ma’mun ed. 1407/1987) 11:462; Ibn Hajar cites it in al-matalib al-`aliya (Kuwait, 1393/1973) 4:23, chapter entitled: “The Prophet’s life in his grave” and #4574; Dr Sad ibn Nasir al-Shitharsaid the hadeeth is hasan (good) with this sanad (chain of narration) (in Abu Ya’la) and the narrators are all trustworthy. Husayn Salim Asad from his tahqeeq of the Musnad of Abu Ya’la declaring the said sanad to be Saheeh. Haythami said in Majma` al-zawa’id (8:5), chapter entitled: “`Isa ibn Maryam’s Descent”: “Its narrators are of the two saheeh (these narrators are also narrators in Saheeh Bukhari and Saheeh Muslim).”
Al-Haakim narrates a slight different version of the above hadeeth in al-Mustadrak he said that the isnad (chain of narration) is saheeh.
Points To Consider
Haythami saying the narrators are of two saheeh (in Abu Yala’s Musnad) does not mean that the narration itself has been authenticated by Haythami.
Imam Al-Zailaee Al-Hanafi said:
“If a narrator has been used by (Imam Al-Bukhari) in the Saheeh, it does not mean that if that narrator is found in any other (outside the Saheehs of Imams Al-Bukhari and Muslim) hadeeth, that that hadeeth itself becomes authentic fulfilling the strict conditions of Saheeh Al-Bukhari” (Nasb Al-Raiyah v1 p 342)
One example of what Imam Al-Zailaee Al-Hanafi is saying is if a narrator is from the Saheehs (Bukhari and Muslim) but the two sheikhs have only relied on him for support (as a narrator of narrations in there Saheehs which help to support authentic narrations).
Imam adh-Dhahabi said about Al-Haakims book al-Mustadrak, “If only he didn’t write that book”, because this book contains many errors.
Authenticity of Abu Yala’s Narration In His Musnad
This particular version of the hadeeth has bee narrated by Abu Sakhr only, Abu Sakhr is Humayd ibn Ziyad.
Imam Ahmed in one narration from Abdullah bin ahmed said “no harm in him”
Imam Darmi narrated from Ibn Ma’een that he is “Thiqa”(Strong).
Sheikhs Shu’ayb Arna’oot and Bashhar Awwad who said he is saduq hasan al-hadeeth (English equivalent ‘a good truthful narrator of hadeeth’ (not exact word for word translation).
Ibn Adi said that he is salih in hadith (English equivalent ‘a good narrator of hadeeth’ (not exact word for word translation)).
In The Middle
Imam Dhahabi when he spoke about him he said “People (the scholars) have disagreed about him”
Ibn Hajar said in al-Taqreeb (no. 1546) that he is saduq yahim (English equivalent ‘truthful but makes mistakes’ (not exact word for word translation).
al-Mizzi said: another one of his strange hadeeths (referring to the hadeeth under discussion). Then he pointed out that at-Tabaraani said: no one narrated it from Kurayb except humayd bin ziyaad abu sakhr.
Abi Maryam narrated from (Ahmed) that Abu Sakhr is “weak in hadith”.
Ishaq bin mansoor narrated from Yahya that he is “weak”.
Imam Nisai said “he is not strong”.
Ibn Adi said that ” I heard Ibn al-Hammad say that Abu Sakhr, the one from whom Hatim Ibn Isma‘il narrates is “weak”.
In fact Ibn Adi pointed out the mistakes from the same chain of narration (as the hadeeth under discussion) i.e. Abu Sakhr from Saeed al-Maqburi from Abu Hurairah and he said: In some of his hadeeths are things he was not followed up in narrating (meaning he narrates a lot of hadeeth via this route which no one else narrates. It means a lot of his hadeeth via this route may have been either shaadh or munkar (both are a type of weak hadeeth) because they contradict other hasan or saheeh hadeeth. Is it possible that his hadeeth are hasan/saheeh if no else ever narrates the same thing as him? Allah knows best).
His hadeeth need strengthening to be acceptable, because it is clear from the above he is neither thiqa/saduq nor is weak, he is as Ibn Hajar said in al-Taqreeb (no. 1546) he is saduq yahim (English equivalent ‘truthful but makes mistakes’ (not exact word for word translation). Therefore with no supporting hadeeth the hadeeth he narrates are weak. So this hadeeth is weak unless it has a supporting narration.
Authenticity Of The Narration In Mustadrak By Al-Haakim
The hadeeth of al-Haakim contains Mohammed Ibn Ishaq in the chain of narration he is well known for mudallis. A mudallas (“concealed”) hadeeth is one which is weak due to the uncertainty caused by tadlis. Tadlis (concealing) refers to an isnad where a reporter has concealed the identity of his shaikh. Shu’bah (d. 170) said, “tadlis is the brother of lying” and “To commit adultery is more favourable to me than to report by way of tadlis.” al-‘Iraqi, p. 98. Due to Mohammed Ibn Ishaq being known for mudallis this makes the chain of narration ma’lul or mu’allal (both mean defective).
Ibn al-Salah says, “A ma’lul (defective) hadeeth is one which appears to be sound, but thorough research reveals a disparaging factor.” Such factors can be:
1. Declaring a hadeeth musnad (the chain of narration goes back to the prophet and there is no breaks in the chain) when it is in fact mursal (the chain of narration goes back to the prophet but the sahaba or the student of the sahaba who narrated it is missing).
2. Showing a narrator to narrate from a sheikh when in fact he did not meet that particular sheikh. There are other factors that make a hadeeth ma’lul.
A Similar Hadeeth In Bukhari & Muslim
The prophet Mohammed said “By Him in Whose Hands my soul is, Son of Mary (Jesus) will shortly descend amongst you people (Muslims) as a just ruler and will break the Cross and kill the pig and abolish the Jizyah (a tax taken from the non-Muslims, who are in the protection, of the Muslim government). Then there will be abundance of money and no one will accept charitable gifts.” Recorded in Saheeh Bukhari, Vol. 3, Book 34, No. 425
The prophet Mohammed said “I swear by Allah that the son of Mary will certainly descend as a just judge and he would definitely break the cross, and kill swine and abolish Jizyah and would leave the young she-camel and no one would endeavour to (collect Zakat on it). Spite, mutual hatred and jealousy against one another will certainly disappear and when he summons people to accept wealth, not even one would do so.” Recorded in Saheeh Muslim Book 001, Number 0289
Bukhari and Muslim have narrated this hadeeth with different wording; however the meaning is exactly the same so they agree with each other. As for what is recorded by Abu Yala and Al-Haakim there narrations agree I meaning but not wording with what is recorded I the two Saheehs. But they (Abu Yala and Al-Haakim’s versions) contain additionally information which has not been recorded in the Saheehs.
The additionally information (ziyada) is “…..Then he shall stand at my graveside and say: Ya Muhammad! and I will answer him.” This ziyada comes from Abu Sakhr only.
This ziyada means the hadeeths (hadeeth above and Al-Haakims similar version) recorded by Abu Yala and Al-Haakim are either good (hasan (good) or saheeh (authentic)), weak or very weak. The three possible classifications for this hadeeth:
- Ziyada Thiqa (additional information from a strong narrator). So this additional information is accepted from Abu Sakr and the hadeeths recorded by Abu Yala and Al-Haakim are at the least hasan (good) and at best saheeh (authentic).
- Shaadh because Abu Sakhr is a good narrator but he sometimes makes mistakes so as his ziyada contradicts what is narrated in saheeh Muslim this addition is shaadh and therefore the hadeeth is weak. (All shaadh hadeeth are weak).
- Munkar (Rejected) because Abu Sakhr was a narrator known for making mistakes so as his ziyada contradicts what is narrated in saheeh Muslim this addition is munkar and therefore the hadeeth is very weak. (All munkar hadeeth are considered to be very weak).
The category a person puts the hadeeth in depends on how a person views Abu Sakr in light of what the scholars have said about him. What the scholars have said about him as already been mentioned. From there words about him it is clear they disagree on him. This why Imam Dhahabi when he spoke about him he said “People (the scholars) have disagreed about him”.
Therefore the most balanced opinion is classification number 2 (above) (shaadh, all shaadh hadeeth are weak) this is because like Imam Dhahabi said “People (the scholars) have disagreed about him” so he is neither a good or poor narrator he is in-between (he has mixture of both qualities). So Abu Sakhr is a good narrator but he sometimes makes mistakes this is similar to the statement of Ibn Hajar. Ibn Hajar said in al-Taqreeb (no. 1546) that he is Saduq Yahim (English equivalent trustworthy but makes mistakes (not exact word for word translation).
Also al-Hakim has a change in the isnad from version of Abu Ya’laa. In this chain there are two unknown narrators Ataa and the Mawlaa of Umm Habeebah. The unknown narrators I the chain make this hadeeth weak.
In Ibn Hajr Al-Asqalanis famous book Nukhbat Al-Fikar he puts hadeeths which include unknown narrators in the chain (like in the above narration of Utbi) under the title of ‘The rejected (hadeeth) and its Divisions’, after this he puts the unknown narrator under the subtitle of ‘Aspersion…..being unknown (jahala)’. (the 3rd (2000) edition of Nukhbas text established by Nur al-Din Itr p.178 -180)
Ibn Hajr Al-Asqalani explains the unknown narrator (mubham) is not accepted. (Nukhbat Al-Fikar the 3rd (2000) edition of Nukhbas text established by Nur al-Din Itr p.18
Both Of The Hadeeths (Abu Yala & Al-Haakims Versions) Contradict Surah Nur, Verse 63 & Its Tafsir
Allah said “Make not the calling of the Messenger among you as your calling one another…” (24:63)
Explanation Of This Line In The Above Verse
Ad-Dahhak said, reporting from Ibn Abbas: ““They used to say, ‘O Muhammad’, or ‘O Abu Al-Qasim,’ but Allah forbade them to do that, as a sign of respect towards His Prophet , and told them to say, ‘O Prophet of Allah’, ‘O Messenger of Allah’.”’
Qatadah said: “Allah commanded that His Prophet should be treated with respect and honour, and that he should be a leader.”
Ibn Kathir quotes Muqatil who said concerning the Ayah “Make not the calling of the Messenger among you as your calling one another”. When you address him, do not say, ‘O Muhammad,’ or ‘O son of Abdullah’; rather honor him and say, ‘O Prophet of Allah’, or, ‘O Messenger of Allah’, Imam Suyuti said the same thing.
Imam Tabari quotes Mujaahid who said, “They were commanded by Allah to call the prophet Mohammed ‘O messenger of Allah’ and out of humility they were not to call him ‘O Mohammed’.”
Imam Qurtubi also quotes Mujaahid and Sa’eed ibn Jubair who said “the meaning of the verse was to say ‘O messenger of Allah’ as they were discouraged from saying ‘O Mohammed’ out of respect for him.”
Imam Razi said “Do not call out to him as you would call out to each other by saying ‘Ya Muhammad’, but say ‘O Messenger of Allah, O Prophet of Allah’.”
Sheikh Al Sha’raawi, said “He (the prophet) is not like the rest of you so you can not call out to him: ‘Ya Muhammad’
From the above it is clear that the prophet Mohammed should not be addressed ‘O Mohammed’, so if is the case then the section of the above hadeeth in which, Isa says ‘O (ya) Mohammed’ it contradicts the understanding of this verse.
Relate to this topic (tafseer 24:63) is this question, if prophet Isa will come back to earth and rule by the law of Prophet Mohammed. If inside the law a person is not allowed to address the prophet by saying ‘O (ya) Mohammed’ why would Isa purposely break that law?
A Few Additional Points
The saying of prophet Isa (ya (O) Mohammed) in the hadeeth proves he is calling (addressing) the prophet but this does not necessarily mean he is calling him to make duaa through his status; he might be calling him to speak to him or to give salam to him. Allah knows best.
There is no clear evidence in this hadeeth that the prophet Mohammed meant (by saying “and say: ya (O) Muhammad” that Isa would ask the prophet to make duaa for him.
Both hadeeth are weak because they both contradict surah Nur verse 63 and its tafsir.
Plus both hadeeth are shaadh (a type of weak hadeeth) because they contain additional information (from the narrator Abu Sakhr, which is not found in similar hadeeth in Saheeh Bukhari or Saheeh Muslim. This additional information comes from the narrator Abu Sakhr who Imam Dhahabi said “People (the scholars) have disagreed about him (whether he is strong or weak in hadeeth)”.
Also the hadeeth of al-Haakim contains Mohammed Ibn Ishaq in the chain of narration he is well known for mudallis. A mudallas (“concealed”) hadeeth is one which is weak due to the uncertainty caused by tadlis.
Furthermore the version of the hadeeth in Musnad Abu Yala has Abu Sakhr in the chain of narration. Ibn Hajar said in al-Taqreeb (no. 1546) that he is Saduq Yahim (English equivalent ‘truthful but makes mistakes’ (not exact word for word translation). So his hadeeth need strengthening to be acceptable, however al-Haakims version has too many problems to be used as a strengthening hadeeth. Thus with no supporting hadeeth this hadeeth is weak.