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Excessive Praise (Ahadith 2328 – 2329)

Bismillah.

Ahadith 2322 – 2327 (below) are repeats. See linked text for related posts.

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 824 :
Narrated by Abdullah bin Umar (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Bilal pronounces the Adhan when it is still night (before dawn), so eat and drink till the next Adhan is pronounced (or till you hear Ibn Um Maktum’s Adhan).” Ibn Um Maktum (radiallaahu `anhu) was a blind man who would not pronounce the Adhan till he was told that it was dawn.

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 825 :
Narrated by Al-Miswar bin Makhrama (radiallaahu `anhu)
Some outer garments were received the Prophet and my father (Makhrama) said to me, “Let us go to the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) so that he may give us something from the garments.” So, my father stood at the door and spoke. The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) recognized his voice and came out carrying a garment and telling Makhrama the good qualities of that garment, adding, “I have kept this for you, I have kept this for you.”

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 826 :
Narrated by Abu Said Al-Khudri (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Isn’t the witness of a woman equal to half of that of a man?” The women said, “Yes.” He said, “This is because of the deficiency of a woman’s mind.”

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 827 :
Narrated by Uqba bin Al-Harith (radiallaahu `anhu)
That he had married Um Yahya bint Abu Ihab. He said. “A black slave-lady came and said, ‘I suckled you both.’ I then mentioned that to the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) who turned his face aside.” Uqba (radiallaahu `anhu) further said, “I went to the other side and told the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) about it. He said, ‘How can you (keep her as your wife) when the lady has said that she suckled both of you (i.e. you and your wife?)” So, the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) ordered him to divorce her.

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 828 :
Narrated by ‘Uqba bin Al-Harith (radiallaahu `anhu)
I married a woman and later on a woman came and said, “I suckled you both.” So, I went to the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) (to ask him about it). He said, “How can you (keep her as a wife) when it has been said (that you were foster brother and sister)? Leave (divorce) her.

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 829 :
Narrated by Aisha (radiallaahu `anhaa) (the wife of the Prophet)
“Whenever Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) intended to go on a journey, he would draw lots amongst his wives and would take with him the one upon whom the lot fell. During a Ghazwa of his, he drew lots amongst us and the lot fell upon me, and I proceeded with him after Allah had decreed the use of the veil by women. I was carried in a Howdah (on the camel) and dismounted while still in it. When Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) was through with his Ghazwa and returned home, and we approached the city of Medina, Allah’s Apostle ordered us to proceed at night. When the order of setting off was given, I walked till I was past the army to answer the call of nature. After finishing I returned (to the camp) to depart (with the others) and suddenly realized that my necklace over my chest was missing. So, I returned to look for it and was delayed because of that. The people who used to carry me on the camel, came to my Howdah and put it on the back of the camel, thinking that I was in it, as, at that time, women were light in weight, and thin and lean, and did not use to eat much. So, those people did not feel the difference in the heaviness of the Howdah while lifting it, and they put it over the camel. At that time I was a young lady. They set the camel moving and proceeded on. I found my necklace after the army had gone, and came to their camp to find nobody. So, I went to the place where I used to stay, thinking that they would discover my absence and come back in my search. While in that state, I felt sleepy and slept. Safwan bin Mu’attal As-Sulami Adh-Dhakwani (radiallaahu `anhu) was behind the army and reached my abode in the morning. When he saw a sleeping person, he came to me, and he used to see me before veiling. So, I got up when I heard him saying, “Inna lil-lah-wa inn a ilaihi rajiun (We are for Allah, and we will return to Him).” He made his camel knell down. He got down from his camel, and put his leg on the front legs of the camel and then I rode and sat over it. Safwan set out walking, leading the camel by the rope till we reached the army who had halted to take rest at midday. Then whoever was meant for destruction, fell into destruction, (some people accused me falsely) and the leader of the false accusers was ‘Abdullah bin Ubai bin Salul. After that we returned to Medina, and I became ill for one month while the people were spreading the forged statements of the false accusers. I was feeling during my ailment as if I were not receiving the usual kindness from the Prophet which I used to receive from him when I got sick. But he would come, greet and say, ‘How is that (girl)?’ I did not know anything of what was going on till I recovered from my ailment and went out with Um Mistah to the Manasi where we used to answer the call of nature, and we used not to go to answer the call of nature except from night to night and that was before we had lavatories near to our houses. And this habit of ours was similar to the habit of the old ‘Arabs in the open country (or away from houses). So. I and Um Mistah bint Ruhm went out walking. Um Mistah stumbled because of her long dress and on that she said, ‘Let Mistah be ruined.’ I said, ‘You are saying a bad word. Why are you abusing a man who took part in (the battle of) Badr?’ She said, ‘O Hanata (you there) didn’t you hear what they said?’ Then she told me the rumors of the false accusers. My sickness was aggravated, and when I returned home, Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) came to me, and after greeting he said, ‘How is that (girl)?’ I requested him to allow me to go to my parents. I wanted then to be sure of the news through them I Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) allowed me, and I went to my parents and asked my mother, ‘What are the people talking about?’ She said, ‘O my daughter! Don’t worry much about this matter. By Allah, never is there a charming woman loved by her husband who has other wives, but the women would forge false news about her.’ I said, ‘Glorified be Allah! Are the people really taking of this matter?’ That night I kept on weeping and could not sleep till morning. In the morning Allah’s Apostle called Ali bin Abu Talib and Usama bin Zaid (radiallaahu `anhumaa) when he saw the Divine Inspiration delayed, to consul them about divorcing his wife (i.e. ‘Aisha). Usama bin Zaid said what he knew of the good reputation of his wives and added, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! Keep you wife, for, by Allah, we know nothing about her but good.’ ‘Ali bin Abu Talib said, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! Allah has no imposed restrictions on you, and there are many women other than she, yet you may ask the woman-servant who will tell you the truth.’ On that Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) called Buraira and said, ‘O Burair. Did you ever see anything which roused your suspicions about her?’ Buraira said, ‘No, by Allah Who has sent you with the Truth, I have never seen in her anything faulty except that she is a girl of immature age, who sometimes sleeps and leaves the dough for the goats to eat.’ On that day Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) ascended the pulpit and requested that somebody support him in punishing ‘Abdullah bin Ubai bin Salul. Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, ‘Who will support me to punish that person (‘Abdullah bin Ubai bin Salul) who has hurt me by slandering the reputation of my family? By Allah, I know nothing about my family but good, and they have accused a person about whom I know nothing except good, and he never entered my house except in my company.’ Sad bin Mu’adh (radiallaahu `anhu) got up and said, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! by Allah, I will relieve you from him. If that man is from the tribe of the Aus, then we will chop his head off, and if he is from our brothers, the Khazraj, then order us, and we will fulfill your order.’ On that Sad bin ‘Ubada, the chief of the Khazraj and before this incident, he had been a pious man, got up, motivated by his zeal for his tribe and said, ‘By Allah, you have told a lie; you cannot kill him, and you will never be able to kill him.’ On that Usaid bin Al-Hadir got up and said (to Sad bin ‘Ubada), ‘By Allah! you are a liar. By Allah, we will kill him; and you are a hypocrite, defending the hypocrites.’ On this the two tribes of Aus and Khazraj got excited and were about to fight each other, while Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) was standing on the pulpit. He got down and quietened them till they became silent and he kept quiet. On that day I kept on weeping so much so that neither did my tears stop, nor could I sleep. In the morning my parents were with me and I had wept for two nights and a day, till I thought my liver would burst from weeping. While they were sitting with me and I was weeping, an Ansari woman asked my permission to enter, and I allowed her to come in. She sat down and started weeping with me. While we were in this state, Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) came and sat down and he had never sat with me since the day they forged the accusation. No revelation regarding my case came to him for a month. He recited Tashah-hud (i.e. None has the right to be worshipped but Allah and Muhammad is His Apostle) and then said, ‘O ‘Aisha! I have been informed such-and-such about you; if you are innocent, then Allah will soon reveal your innocence, and if you have committed a sin, then repent to Allah and ask Him to forgive you, for when a person confesses his sin and asks Allah for forgiveness, Allah accepts his repentance.’ When Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) finished his speech my tears ceased completely and there remained not even a single drop of it. I requested my father to reply to Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) on my behalf. My father said, By Allah, I do not know what to say to Allah’s Apostle.’ I said to my mother, ‘Talk to Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) on my behalf.’ She said, ‘By Allah, I do not know what to say to Allah’s Apostle. I was a young girl and did not have much knowledge of the Quran. I said. ‘I know, by Allah, that you have listened to what people are saying and that has been planted in your minds and you have taken it as a truth. Now, if I told you that I am innocent and Allah knows that I am innocent, you would not believe me and if I confessed to you falsely that I am guilty, and Allah knows that I am innocent you would believe me. By Allah, I don’t compare my situation with you except to the situation of Joseph’s father (i.e. Jacob) who said, ‘So (for me) patience is most fitting against that which you assert and it is Allah (Alone) whose help can be sought.’ Then I turned to the other side of my bed hoping that Allah would prove my innocence. By Allah I never thought that Allah would reveal Divine Inspiration in my case, as I considered myself too inferior to be talked of in the Holy Qur’an. I had hoped that Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) might have a dream in which Allah would prove my innocence. By Allah, Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) had not got up and nobody had left the house before the Divine Inspiration came to Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam). So, there overtook him the same state which used to overtake him, (when he used to have, on being inspired divinely). He was sweating so much so that the drops of the sweat were dropping like pearls though it was a (cold) wintry day. When that state of Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) was over, he was smiling and the first word he said, ‘Aisha! Thank Allah, for Allah has declared your innocence.’ My mother told me to go to Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam). I replied, ‘By Allah I will not go to him and will not thank but Allah.’ So Allah revealed: “Verily! They who spread the slander are a gang among you . . .” (24.11) When Allah gave the declaration of my Innocence, Abu Bakr (radiallaahu `anhu), who used to provide for Mistah bin Uthatha for he was his relative, said, ‘By Allah, I will never provide Mistah with anything because of what he said about Aisha.’ But Allah later revealed: — “And let not those who are good and wealthy among you swear not to help their kinsmen, those in need and those who left their homes in Allah’s Cause. Let them forgive and overlook. Do you not wish that Allah should forgive you? Verily! Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful.” (24.22) After that Abu Bakr said, ‘Yes ! By Allah! I like that Allah should forgive me,’ and resumed helping Mistah whom he used to help before. Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) also asked Zainab bint Jahsh (i.e. the Prophet’s wife about me saying, ‘What do you know and what did you see?’ She replied, ‘O Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam)! I refrain to claim hearing or seeing what I have not heard or seen. By Allah, I know nothing except goodness about Aisha.” Aisha further added “Zainab was competing with me (in her beauty and the Prophet’s love), yet Allah protected her (from being malicious), for she had piety.”

Today’s Ahadith:

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 830 :
Narrated by Abu Bakra (radiallaahu `anhu)
A man praised another man in front of the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam). The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said to him, “Woe to you, you have cut off your companion’s neck, you have cut off your companion’s neck,” repeating it several times and then added, “Whoever amongst you has to praise his brother should say, ‘I think that he is so and so, and Allah knows exactly the truth, and I do not confirm anybody’s good conduct before Allah, but I think him so and so,’ if he really knows what he says about him.”

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 831 :
Narrated by Abu Musa Al-Ashari (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) heard someone praising another and exaggerating in his praise. The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “You have ruined or cut the man’s back (by praising him so much).

Praising someone on their face can be very dangerous because it leads to insincerity, riyaa’ (showing off), pride and relying on others’ opinions. If you like someone, praise them all you want behind their back.. doing it in front of them can cause more harm than benefit. That does not mean you become stingy and never give good remarks to anyone.. it’s the exaggeration that’s prohibited. Read this for details.

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`Abbad Ibn Bishr [radiallaahu `anhu] (Hadith No. 2321)

Bismillah.
Volume 3, Book 48, Number 823:

Narrated ‘Aisha (radiallaahu `anhaa):
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) heard a man (reciting Quran) in the Mosque, and he said, “May Allah bestow His Mercy upon him. No doubt, he made me remember such-and such Verses of such-and-such Sura which I dropped (from my memory).

Narrated Aisha (radiallaahu `anhaa): The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) performed the Tahajjud prayer in my house, and then he heard the voice of ‘Abbad who was praying in the Mosque, and said, “O ‘Aisha! Is this ‘Abbad’s voice?” I said, “Yes.” He said, “O Allah! Be merciful to ‘Abbad!”

It is said that ‘Abbad (radiallaahu`anhu) was known for his love of Quran and his beautiful recitation. And see how even the Prophet of Allah (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) is praising him and praying for him.
There are accounts of his life but I haven’t been able to identify the sources. Read up on him for true inspiration here.

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False Witness (Ahadith 2319 – 2320)

Bismillah.

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 821 :
Narrated by Anas (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) was asked about the great sins He said, “They are:- (1 ) To join others in worship with Allah, (2) To be undutiful to one’s parents. (3) To kill a person (which Allah has forbidden to kill) (i.e. to commit the crime of murdering). (4) And to give a false witness.”

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 822 :
Narrated by Abu Bakra (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said thrice, “Should I inform you out the greatest of the great sins?” They said, “Yes, O Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam)!” He said, “To join others in worship with Allah and to be undutiful to one’s parents.” The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) then sat up after he had been reclining (on a pillow) and said, “And I warn you against giving a false witness”, and he kept on saying that warning till we thought he would not stop.

There’s mention of false witness in the Quran as well:

وَالَّذِينَ لَا يَشْهَدُونَ الزُّورَ

“And [they are] those who do not testify to falsehood..” [Al-Furqan: 72]

Ibn Kathir comments:

These are further attributes of the servants of the Most Gracious. They do not bear witness to falsehood, including lies, immorality, disbelief, foul speech and false words…

“And those who do not bear witness to falsehood” refers to giving false testimony, which means lying deliberately to someone else…

From the context it seems that what is meant by those who do not bear witness to falsehood is those who do not attend it or are not present when it happens.

The above ayah talks about false witness, which is a major sin. Allah also talks about hiding witness/testimony in the Quran:

وَلَا تَكْتُمُوا الشَّهَادَةَ ۚ وَمَن يَكْتُمْهَا فَإِنَّهُ آثِمٌ قَلْبُهُ ۗ وَاللَّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ عَلِيمٌ

“And do not conceal testimony, for whoever conceals it – his heart is indeed sinful, and Allah is Knowing of what you do.” [Al-Baqarah: 283]

Ibn Kathir comments:

Allah’s statement,

﴿وَلاَ تَكْتُمُواْ الشَّهَـدَةَ﴾

(And conceal not the evidence) means, do not hide it or refuse to announce it. Ibn `Abbas and other scholars said, “False testimony is one of the worst of the major sins, and such is the case with hiding the true testimony.” This is why Allah said,

﴿وَمَن يَكْتُمْهَا فَإِنَّهُ ءَاثِمٌ قَلْبُهُ﴾

(For he who hides it, surely, his heart is sinful).

As-Suddi commented, “Meaning he is a sinner in his heart.”

This is similar to Allah’s statement,

﴿وَلاَ نَكْتُمُ شَهَـدَةَ اللَّهِ إِنَّآ إِذَاً لَّمِنَ الاٌّثِمِينَ﴾

(We shall not hide testimony of Allah, for then indeed we should be of the sinful) ﴿5:106﴾.

Allah said,

﴿يَـأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ كُونُواْ قَوَّامِينَ بِالْقِسْطِ شُهَدَآءِ للَّهِ وَلَوْ عَلَى أَنفُسِكُمْ أَوِ الْوَلِدَيْنِ وَالاٌّقْرَبِينَ إِن يَكُنْ غَنِيّاً أَوْ فَقَيراً فَاللَّهُ أَوْلَى بِهِمَا فَلاَ تَتَّبِعُواْ الْهَوَى أَن تَعْدِلُواْ وَإِن تَلْوُواْ أَوْ تُعْرِضُواْ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيراً ﴾

(O you who believe! Stand out firmly for justice, as witnesses to Allah, even though it be against yourselves, or your parents, or your kin, be he rich or poor, Allah is a better Protector to both (than you). So follow not the lusts (of your hearts), lest you avoid justice; and if you distort your witness or refuse to give it, verily, Allah is Ever Well-Acquainted with what you do) ﴿ 4:135

P.S. We have talked previously about a similar subject: false oaths.

Best of Mankind (Ahadith 2317 – 2318)

Bismillah.

Hadith no. 2316 (below) is a repeat. Read it here.

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 818 :
Narrated by An-Nu’man bin Bashir (radiallaahu `anhu)
My mother asked my father to present me a gift from his property; and he gave it to me after some hesitation. My mother said that she would not be satisfied unless the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) was made a witness to it. I being a young boy, my father held me by the hand and took me to the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam). He said to the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam), “His mother, bint Rawaha, requested me to give this boy a gift.” The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Do you have other sons besides him?” He said, “Yes.” The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Do not make me a witness for injustice.” Narrated Ash-Shabi that the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “I will not become a witness for injustice.”

Today’s Ahadith:

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 819 :
Narrated by Zahdam bin Mudrab
I heard Imran bin Husain (radiallaahu `anhu) saying, “The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, ‘The best people are those living in my generation, then those coming after them, and then those coming after (the second generation).” Imran said “I do not know whether the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) mentioned two or three generations after your present generation. The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) added, ‘There will be some people after you, who will be dishonest and will not be trustworthy and will give witness (evidences) without being asked to give witness, and will vow but will not fulfill their vows, and fatness will appear among them.”

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 820 :
Narrated by Abdullah (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “The people of my generation are the best, then those who follow them, and then whose who follow the latter. After that there will come some people whose witness will go ahead of their oaths, and their oaths will go ahead of their witness.” Ibrahim (a sub-narrator) said, “We used to be beaten for taking oaths by saying, ‘I bear witness by the Name of Allah or by the Covenant of Allah.”

Allah has extolled the virtues of the Companions of the Prophet (saw) many places in the Qur’an. A Companion is defined as one who met the Prophet (saw) in a state of belief and who died in that state. Allah said (after mentioning some of the hypocrites who stayed behind from Jihad):

{Rather, the Prophet and those who believe with him fought with their property and their lives for these are all good things, they are the successful ones and Allah has prepared for them gardens beneath which rivers flow therein forever and that is the great success.} At-Tauba: 88-89

Allah’s praise of the Companions also extends to all those who follow their way. Allah said:

{The forerunners those who came first among the Migrators and the Helpers and those who followed them with the best. Allah is pleased with them and they are pleased with Him and Allah has prepared for them gardens beneath which rivers flow therein forever and that is the great success.} At-Tauba: 100

The best generations of all time are: the generation of the Prophet (saw) i.e., the Companions, those who followed them (at-taabi’een) and the ones who followed those (atbaa’ at-taabi’een). They are our best example. When we doubt whether a certain practice or belief is a prohibited bid’a or a valid interpretation and a good practice in the din, we simply have to look at these generations. If it is in the area of worship and they did not practice it or anything similar to it, or they openly condemned it then we know with certainty that it is not part if Islam and is the bid’a which Allah and His Prophet (saw) have absolutely forbidden.

The word for “generation” is qarn. Nowadays, this word is used to mean “century”. There are three interpretations of the word in this hadith:

  1. One hundred years. There are several hadith narrated in which the Prophet (saw) said that someone will reach “qarn” and then other reports state that that person lived to 100 years. There are differences as to this last point, however.

  2. The people of a particular time who were together in a certain affair – such as under a particular prophet or leader.

  3. That the “qarn” of the Prophet (saw) is the Companions, the next one is the Followers (taabi’een) and the third one is their Followers.

Notice that the last two are pretty similar. The third one is the best in terms of the meaning of this hadith. So the generation of the Companions lasted until the last of them passed away and likewise the two generations after them.

The scholars have agreed that the last of the those who followed those who followed lived to around 220 years. After that time, all sorts of innovations appeared and many of the deviant sects began. The Mu’tazilah spoke out loudly and widely and the philosophers raised their heads. The people of knowledge were tested by being forced to say that the Qur’an was created. In short, things changed very drastically and things have remained deficient ever since.

The only protection for this Ummah is to stick to the way of the Companions and the first generations.

Abi Burda reports from his father: “We prayed Maghrib with Allah’s Messenger (saw) then we said: Why not sit until we pray Isha with him? And so we sat and the Prophet (saw) came out to us and said: “Are you still here?” We said: “O Allah’s Messenger we prayed Maghrig with you and we decided to sit here until we pray Isha with you.” He said: “You have done well.” Then, he raised his head toward the heavens – and he used to do that frequently – and said: “The stars are the protection for the sky – when the stars have gone, that which has been forewarned will come to the sky. I am the protection for my Companions – when I have gone, that which has been forewarned will come to my companions. My Companions are the protection for this Ummah – when they have gone, that which has been forewarned will come to this Ummah.” (Muslim)

Taken mostly from: http://www.java-man.com/pages/BestGenerations/BestGenerations.html

Read more on the virtues of Sahaba here.

Testimony of a Sinner (Ahadith 2314 – 2315)

Bismillah.

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 816 :
Narrated by ‘Urwa bin Az-Zubair (radiallaahu `anhu)
A woman committed theft in the Ghazwa of the Conquest (of Mecca) and she was taken to the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) who ordered her hand to be cut off. ‘Aisha (radiallaahu `anhaa) said, “Her repentance was perfect and she was married (later) and used to come to me (after that) and I would present her needs to Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam).”

Volume 3, Book 48, Number 817 :
Narrated by Zaid bin Khalid (radiallaahu `anhu)
Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) ordered that an unmarried man who committed illegal sexual intercourse be scourged one hundred lashes and sent into exile for one year.

Can the testimony of a sinner be accepted?

In case of slander, Allah has prescribed three punishments. They are: the hadd punishment; rejection of testimony; and describing the slanderer as an evildoer (Faasiq). Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And those who accuse chaste women, and produce not four witnesses, flog them with eighty stripes, and reject their testimony forever. They indeed are the Faasiqoon (liars, rebellious, disobedient to Allaah). Except those who repent thereafter and do righteous deeds; (for such) verily, Allaah is Oft‑Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [al-Noor 24:4-5].

With regard to the hadd punishment, the fuqaha’ are unanimously agreed that the hadd punishment for slander is eighty lashes if the slanderer is a free person [i.e., not a slave], man or woman, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“flog them with eighty stripes” [al-Noor 24:4].

As for his testimony not being accepted, the scholars are unanimously agreed that the testimony of the slanderer should not be accepted so long as he has not repented, because he has committed a major sin, namely slander, and has not repented from it, so he cannot be described as being of good character, and good character is a condition of testimony being accepted; and because he is a liar and an evildoer according to the text of the verse: “They indeed are the Faasiqoon (liars, rebellious, disobedient to Allaah).

“Why did they not produce four witnesses? Since they (the slanderers) have not produced witnesses! Then with Allaah they are the liars” [al-Noor 24:13].

The testimony of the evildoer and liar cannot be accepted, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And take as witness two just persons from among you (Muslims)” [al-Talaaq 65:2]. So it is stipulated that the witness should be of good character, and the evildoer and liar are not of good character.

If he repents from slander and admits that he was lying, then the majority of scholars (Maalik, al-Shaafa’i and Ahmad) are of the view that his testimony may be accepted. They said:

1.     Because repentance erases the sins that came before it, so if he repents his sin and its effects are erased completely, and non-acceptance of testimony is one of the effects of that sin.

Imam al-Shaafa’i said in al-Umm (7/94):

If he admits that he lied, his testimony may then be accepted, but if he does not do that then his testimony cannot be accepted, until he does that, because the sin for which his testimony is rejected is slander, but if he admits that he was lying then he has repented. End quote.

2.     Because the expression “forever” in the verse applies so long as he persists in evildoing. Hence after that the verse mentions after the ruling that he is an evildoer: “and reject their testimony forever. They indeed are the Faasiqoon (liars, rebellious, disobedient to Allaah).” If the description of evildoer ceases to apply to him, then the reason for rejecting his testimony also ceases to exist.

3.     It was narrated from ‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him) that he said to those who had slandered al-Mugheerah ibn Shu’bah, after he had carried out the hadd punishment of flogging on them: “Whoever repents, his testimony will be accepted.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari in a mu’allaq majzoom report.

His repentance means that he admits that he was lying about the slandered person whom he accused of zina. Hence the words of ‘Umar according to Ibn Jareer were, “Whoever admits that he was lying, his testimony will be accepted.”

If the slanderer repents and mends his ways, his testimony will be accepted, like any other Muslim of good character.

Al-Mughni (12/386); al-Majmoo’ (22/98-101).

Taken from IslamQA

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