Imam Al-Nawawi’s Riyad-us-Saliheen
Excellence of Participation in Funeral Prayers in Large Numbers and Formation of
Three Rows or More
932. `Aishah (May Allah be pleased with her) reported: The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “If a group of Muslims numbering a hundred perform funeral prayer over a dead person, and all of them ask Allah’s forgiveness for him, their prayer for him will be accepted.”
933. Ibn `Abbas (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “If a Muslim dies and forty people, who do not associate anything with Allah in worship, participate in the funeral prayer over him, Allah will accept their intercession for him.”
934. Marthad bin `Abdullah Al-Yazni reported: When Malik bin Hubairah (May Allah be pleased with him) offered a funeral prayer and found a small number of participants, he would divide them into three rows and would say that the Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “If three rows of men offer funeral prayer over anyone, his entry into Jannah will become certain.”
[Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi].