بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيْم

اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِيْن،وَالصَّلاۃ وَالسَّلامُ عَلَی النَّبِیِّ الْکَرِيم وَعَلیٰ آله وَاَصْحَابه اَجْمَعِيْن۔

Authenticity of Hadith

The sayings or actions of the prophet, his character or his approval of any action done by his companions are called as hadith. Authentication of hadith means bringing an evidence to prove the authority of hadith, which means that as with the Quran the beliefs, rules and virtues of actions can also belegitimised by hadith, but this is only next to the Quran. In matter of belief, there is no distinction between Allah and His messenger, while believing one and not the other! In the same way, there is no distinction between Allah’s Word and the prophet’s word, while considering one to be very important and follow it and not following other! Because if one of these is rejected and the other’s rejection is definite. The Lord’s dignity would never accept that a claim is made of accepting his word and not his Messengers words. Almighty Allah has made it clear in his Quran:فإنهم لا يكذبونك و لكن الظالمين بآيات الله يجحدون(Surah Al-Anam:Verse33)

O Messenger, these people do not deny you, but it is the verses of Allah that zalimun (wrongdoers) deny. Similar to the belief in Quran and following it in action is important for completion of the faith, the messengers word are also essential. Because Allah has given such status to the Messenger that any statement he made regarding halal is made halal by Allah and anything he made haram is made haram by Allah. Also, in the Quran Allah has stated clearly that His Messenger is the first interpreter of the Quran, following him is very important for every human until the judgement day, and following him is adhering to his sayings and action and these can only be found in hadith.

Authentication of hadith from the Quran:

Almighty Allah has, numerous times in his book; announced the Messengers hadiths to be conclusive evidence. Some of the Ayahs are given here:

و أنزلنا إليك الذكر لتبين للناس ما نزل إليهم و لعلهم يتفكرون(Surah An-Nahl: Verse 44)And we have also sent down to you (O Mohammed) the dhikr (reminder and advice i.e. The Quran) that you may explain clearly to men what is sent down to them, and that they may give thought.

و ما أنزلنا إليك الكتاب إلا لتبين للناس ما نزل إليهم و لعلهم يتفكرون(Surah An-Nahl :Verse 64) And We have not sent down the Book (the Quran) to you (O Mohammed) except that you may explain to them those things in which they differ, and (as) a guidance and a mercy for a folk who disbelieve.

Almighty Allahhas made it clear in these two Ayahs that his Messenger is the first interpreter of the Quran, and the responsibility has been given to the prophet to explain the rules and issues to the Ummah. Other than these two ayahs, mentioned above, Almighty Allah has ordered, in many Ayahs, to obey the Messenger along with his obedience, at one place he mentionedأطيعوا الله و أطيعوا الرسول , and at other أطيعوا الله ورسوله and somewhere أطيعوا الله و الرسول and in one Ayah Allah saysأطيعوا الرسول. In all these Ayahs, Almighty Allah wants from his servants that they follow his command and obey his Messenger’s order. By this, Almighty Allah has made it clear at different places that alongwith the submission to Allah, obedience to the Messenger is also important, and submission to Allah is not possible without obedience to Messenger. Almighty Allah has ordered us to follow the prophet, and the sources, through which his obedience has reached us, which means the knowledge of hadith and if we doubt this, then we would be rejecting several Ayahs of the Quran, or by showing with our action that the obedience of the Messenger is not possible which Almighty Allah has ordained on us. In the same way Allah states

من يطع الرسول فقد أطاع الله و من  تولى فما أرسلناك عليهم حفيظا (Surah An-Nisa: Verse 80). In this Ayah Almighty Allah declares that obeying his Messenger is obedience to him and says: He who obeys the Messenger (Mohammed) has indeed obeyed Allah.

قل إن كنتم تحبون الله فاتبعوني يحببكم الله ويغفرلكم ذنوبكم(Surah Al-Imran: Verse 31). In this Ayah, Almighty Allah has declared that showing deference to the prophet as the standard of devotion meaning that the love towards Allah is in the obedience of the Prophet, accordingly Almighty Allah says: Say ( O Mohammed to mankind): “If you really love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive your sins.

ومن يطع الله ورسوله يدخله جنات تجري من تحتها الأنهار خالدين فيها، و ذلك الفوز العظيم(Surah An-Nisa: Verse 13,14).And whosoever obeys Allah and His Messenger (Mohammed) will be admitted to gardens under which rivers flow (in paradise), to abide therein, and that will be great success. And whosoever disobeys Allah and His Messenger (Mohammed) and transgresses His (set) limits, He will cast him into the Fire, to abide therein; and he shall have a disgraceful torment. Briefly, the destination of those who do not obey Almighty Allah and His Messenger is hell fire.

ومن يطع الله و رسوله يدخله جنات تجري من تحتها الأنهار، و من يتول يعذبه عذابا أليما(Surah Al-Fath: Verse 17). And whosoever obeys Allah and His Messenger (Mohammed), He will admit him to Gardens beneath which rivers flow (Paradise); and whosoever turns back, He will punish him with a painful torment. In these narrations, the judgement has been passed that those who obey Allah and His Messenger will be in paradise forever and those who do not are destined for eternal damnation.

و من يطع الله و الرسول فأولئك مع الذين أنعم الله عليهم من النبيين و الصديقين  الشهداء و الصالحين و  حسن أولئك رفيقا(Surah An-Nisa: Verse 69). And who obeys Allah and the Messenger (Mohammed), then they will be in the company of those on whom Allah has bestowed His Grace, of the Prophets, the Siddiqun (those followers of the Prophets who were first and foremost to believe in them), the martyrs and the righteous. And how excellent these companions are!In this Ayah Almighty Allah announces that those who obey Allah and His Messenger will end in the company of Prophets, Siddiqun, martyrs and the righteous.

و ما كان لمؤمن و لا مؤمنة إذا قضى الله ورسوله أمرا أن يكون لهم الخيرة من أمرهم. و من يعص الله و رسوله فقد ضل ضلالا مبينا (Surah Al-Ahzab: Verse 36). It is not right for a believer, man or woman, when Allah and His Messenger, have decreed a matter that they should have any option in their decision. And whosoever disobeys Allah and his Messenger, he has indeed strayed into an obvious error.

فلا وربك لا يؤمنون حتى يحكموك فيما شجر بينهم ثم لا يجدوا في أنفسهم حرجا مما قضيت و يسلموا تسليما (Surah An-Nisa: Verse 65). But no, by your Lord, they can have no Faith, until they make you (O Mohammed) judge in all disputes between them, and find in themselves no resistance against your decisions, and accept them with full submission. In this Almighty Allah has declared that the resistance against the Messengers decisions as a symptom of losing faith and obeying him as an indication of having faith.

لقد من الله على المؤمنين إذ بعث فيهم رسولا من أنفسهم يتلو عليهم آياته ويزكيهم و يعلمهم الكتاب و الحكمة(Surah Al-Imran: Verse164). Indeed, Allah conferred a great favour on the believers when He sent among them a Messenger (Mohammed) from among themselves, reciting to them His Verses (the Quran), and purifying them (from sins by their following him), and instructing them (in) the Book (the Quran) and Al-Hikmah (the wisdom and the Sunnahof the Prophet i.e. his legal ways, statements and acts of worship), while before that they had been in manifest error. In this Ayah it is evidently understood that the Messenger’s job is not only to bring the Book but also teach its wisdom and rulings. That is, his mission is to purify people, cleansing of people cannot be done by giving a Book, but for this, guidance is required to be shown with actions and sayings. Almighty Allah has said that Messenger teaches Hikmahand the Book to the people. The Book refers to the Quran and the Hikmahis the Sunnah i.e. his legal ways, statements and acts of worship.

يا أيها الذين آمنوا استجيبوا لله و للرسول إذا دعاكم لما يحييكم (Surah Al-Anfal: Verse24) O you who believe! Answer Allah (by obeying Him) and (His) Messenger when he calls you to that which will give you life.

يأمرهم بالمعروف و ينهاهم عن المنكر ويحل لهم الطيبات و يحرم عليهم الخبائث(Surah Al-A’raf: Verse 157) He commands them for Al-Marufi.e all that Islam has ordained and forbids them from Al-Munkari.e. all that Islam forbids; he allows them as lawful At-Tayyibat i.e. all good and lawful as regards things, deeds, beliefs, persons and foods and prohibits them as Al-Khabaithi.e. all evil and unlawful as regards things, deeds, beliefs, persons and foods. Almighty Allah has described the Messenger as one who declares things Halal and Haram. To sum up, anything declared as lawful by his statement, it is Halal and anything forbidden is Haram.

 لقد كان لكم في رسول الله أسوة حسنة لمن كان يرجو الله و اليوم الآخر و ذكر الله كثير (Surah Al-Ahzab: Verse 21) Indeed in the Messenger of Allah (Mohammed) you have a good example to follow for him who hopes for (the Meeting with) Allah and the Last Day, and remembers Allah much. It means, that the life of the Messenger which is preserved with us in the form of Hadith, is the best example of leading one’s life for all of humanity to come to the Day of Judgement.

ومن يشاقق الرسول من بعد ما تبين لهم الهدى و يتبع غير سبيل المؤمنين نوله ما تولى و نصله جهنم و  ساءت مصيرا (Surah An-Nisa: Verse 115) In this Ayah, Almighty Allah passes a judgement against people who oppose the Messengers Hadiths and says: And whoever contradicts and opposes the Messenger (Mohammed) after the right path has been shown clearly to him, and follows other than the believers’ way, We shall keep him in the  path he has chosen, and burn him in Hell – what an evil destination.

To be brief, Almighty Allah has made it clear at numerous places that together with the submission to Allah, obedience to the prophet is also important, and submission to Allah is not possible without obedience to prophet. Almighty Allah has ordered us to follow the prophet and the sources, through which his obedience has reached us, which means the knowledge of hadith and if we doubt this, then we would be rejecting several Ayahs of the Quran, or by showing with our action that it is not possible to be obedient to the Messenger, which Almighty Allah has ordained on us.

Authentication of the hadith from the sayings of the Messenger:

The leader of all the Messengers and the last Messenger, Mohammed has said that obeying him with the Quran is very essential. In almost every book of Hadith, the Messengers sayings are presented with Tawathur. Of these, three are presented here:

The prophet said “who follows me, obeyed Allah and whoever disobeyed me disobeyed Allah” (Bukhari & Muslim).

The prophet said: whenever I stop you from something, leave it and when I ask you to do a thing then do it according to your ability” (Bukhari & Muslim)

The Prophet said “all the people from my Ummah will go to paradise except those who rejected. When he was asked that who would refuse to go to paradise? He replied that whoever obeyed me will enter paradise and whoever disobeyed me then it is as if he refused (entering paradise) (Bukhari and Muslim).

Authentication of Hadith by the consensus of Ummah:

During the lifetime and after the death of the Prophet, the Ummah has formed a consensus on the authentication of hadith of the Prophet, as the companions used to look, firstly, for solutions in the Quran then they would look for it in the hadith. For this reason, a large number of scholars have classified the revelation into two types, like the starting Ayah’s of the Surah An-Najm: و ما ينطق عن الهوى إن هو إلا وحي يوحى,

  1. Wahi-e-Matloo: The revelation that is recited i.e the Quran of which each letter is from Allah.
  2. Wahi-e-GairMatloo: The revelation that is not recited i.e the hadith of the Prophet, whose expressions are from the prophets but the words are from Allah.

Some people have misinterpreted a few Ayahs such as "تبيانا لكل شيئ",(Surah An-Nahl: Verse 89) and "تفصيلا لكل شيئ"(Surah Al-Anam: Verse 154) and have come to the view that the solution for all the issues is in the Quran and to understand the Quran, the Hadith is not necessary. Whereas, in the Islamic Sharia, the hadith is conclusive evidence along with the Quran, which has been clearly explained by Almighty Allah at several places in the Holy Quran, which means the laws of Shariah are formed from the sayings and actions of the Prophet.

In the Quran, the laws are not clearly stated, and the prophet by his sayings and actions has clarified these briefly mentioned laws. Allah sends his messengers so that he can clearly explain the laws to his Ummah by his sayings and actions, like Allah had at several places ordered to offer Salah and prostration, but the description and the number of times to offer Salah in a day is not mentioned and how standing and prostration is done and when it done and what to recite during this? How many units of prayer to be offered?

In the same way, the zakat is ordered but the details of  whether to give zakat daily, yearly, once in five years or whether once in lifetime? And how to calculate this zakat? On which goods is zakat applicable and what are its regulations?

If there is a doubt on the authentication of hadith, then the several Ayahs that are mentioned in the Quran regarding offering Salah, prostration and zakaah, all these Ayah (may Allah forbid!) will become meaningless.

The Quran, in the same way, (Surah Al-Maida:Verse 38), orders to dismember the arms of the thief, whether man or woman. Now the question is raised whether to remove one hand or both of them? And if only one hand is removed then whether to remove the left or the right? And if it is to be removed, then from where? From the shoulder, elbow or palm? Or from the middle of these? And how much should be the value of goods, to determine whether to dismember? This issue can be clearly found only in the Hadith. From this we know that the Quran cannot be understood without the Hadith.

In the same way, the Quran in (Surah Al-Juma) states that when the call is given for the Juma prayer, then leave buying and selling and run towards the remembrance of Allah. Now the question arises which is the day of juma? When to give the call for prayer? And what should be the words of this call? When to offer the Juma? How to offer it? What are the conditions for buying and selling? The issues relating to jumah can only be found in the hadith.

Some people look at hadith with suspicion for two reasons, firstly the division of hadith and secondly there is disagreement among the scholars on the reliability of the narrators in the chain, but they should know that the Quran was revealed to the Prophet as a guidance for mankind until the day of Judgement. Almighty Allah has promised to protect it and in this very Quran, Almighty Allah says in several places (Surah An-Nahl: Verse 44,64) The way Allah has protected the Ayahs of the Quran, similarly the interpretation and meanings given by the Prophet is also protected until the Day of Judgement – God willing. The manner in which the Ayah of the Quran is protected, it is required that the interpretation and meanings are also preserved, if not, the objective of the revelation is defeated.

There is no doubt that some sayings in the hadith have been wrongly attributed to the messenger, but as a result  of selfless sacrifices from Scholars of hadith almost all these sayings have been identified, which is just a fraction of all the Hadiths compiled. Where the difference of opinion among the scholars is concerned regarding the chain of narrators, this does not mean that the authenticity of Hadith can be doubted, but the real intention of these difference in opinion among scholars of hadith is to separate the Maudhu hadiths and to make the ruling on Islamic sharia according to the hadiths, which are not doubtful. Wherever, there is a doubt about the authenticity of hadith, then it is only considered for its virtues and is not for any legal ruling. Similarly, when there is a difference of opinion among Doctors on how to treat a patient then the whole profession is not invalid. Also when there is a difference of opinion among engineers on how to construct a building then workers are not asked to come up with a drawing. In this modern age there are diverse ways in which a course of study is taught. In every country, the way of living is dissimilar. Similarly in every field of life, there is difference of opinion, because of this we do not rebuff life itself. So why, because of classification of hadiths and the difference of opinion among scholars about the reliability of chain of narrators, reject hadith? Sometimes, these differences are a blessing for the Ummah, with the change of times, an opinion of a scholar is taken to decide on an issue, also because of these differences there is a scope for further research.

Summary: Companions, Tabayeen, Tabe-tabayeen, scholars of Tafseer, Hadith, Fiqh and History which means that from the advent of Islam till today all the schools of thought have agreed that after the Quran the other source of Islamic shariah is Hadith, and the Hadith is also conclusive evidence along with the Quran, which has been revealed in several places by Almighty Allah. It is not even once said in the Quran, only to follow it. This is to say one has to lead life according to the Quran’s teachings and the Messenger’s sayings i.e. hadith. The truth is, without the hadith of the Messenger, the Quran cannot be understood because, Almighty Allah has given the responsibility of clearly stating the rulings and teachings of the Quran to the Ummah, to the messenger, and our belief is that the Messenger has fulfilled this obligation in the best manner. But nowadays, orientalists, turning a blind-eye towards the way in which the Bible and Torah are transcribed and preserved, have raised questions on how the hadith is compiled and conserved. These questions are raised not relying on the truth and the reality is that it is only animosity towards Islam.

May Allah make us all lead our lives according to the Quran and hadith. Ameen.

Mohammad Najeeb Qasmi (www.najeebqasmi.com)