Sharhu Sunnah : Lesson 25 : Point 27
Shaykh Fawzan | Dawud Burbank [Audio|English]
And the Hajj and fighting jihaad along with the ruler continue. And the Jumu`ah Prayer behind them is allowed; and after it six rak`ahs are prayed, separating each pair of rak`ahs. This was the saying of Ahmad ibn Hanbal.
The functions carried out by the ruler are many, and the place to find them enumerated and to find them mentioned together, and where you can acquaint yourself with them is the books on the rulings relating to rulership (al-ahkaamus-sultaaniyyah) such as alAhkaamus-Sultaaniyyah of al-Maawardiyy and al-Ahkaamus-Sultaaniyyah of Aboo Ya`laa al-Hanbaliyy and books which have been written on this topic which explain the functions of the ruler. And it is mentioned in the books of fiqh and in the books of `aqaa∙id (creed and belief) also as occurs here.
Firstly (from these functions), is that he (the ruler) is in charge of carrying out the Jumu`ah Prayer and the two `Eed Prayers and the Muslims pray behind him unless he chooses to appoint someone from the Scholars or from the Students of Knowledge to lead the people in Prayer. However, the basic principle is that he (the ruler) has more right to leading the Prayer with regard to the Jumu`ah Prayer (Friday Prayer) and the two `Eed Prayers. So if he appoints someone to do this then he may do so, and this is what action is upon at present.
Secondly, is that he is the one who establishes the Hajj and he leads the people performing Hajj. And he is in charge of them and he looks into any problems they may have.
Thirdly, is establishment of jihaad in Allaah’s cause; this is from the functions carried out by the ruler. He is the one who gives command for it and he is the one who organises the flags and he is the one who chooses the armies and those who are going to fight. And he appoints the commanders and he appoints the squadrons (army units) and he appoints the armies and he provides the fighters with weaponry. And he gives them directions with regard to fighting the enemy and he specifies the direction in which they are to attack.
So jihaad is from the roles of the ruler; and jihaad is not fowdaa (chaos or anarchy) such that everyone who wants to take up arms and go and fight and attack does so and says, “I am fighting jihaad in Allaah’s cause!” This is not jihaad in Allaah’s cause. Jihaad in Allaah’s cause is properly arranged and it is regulated by legislated regulations (of the Sharee`ah, the Islaamic Law). But as for when it is opened up to chaos then it becomes mere destruction, and its harm becomes more than its benefit, if there is actually any benefit in it at all. So the harm resulting from it is greater. So affairs have regulating principles and jihaad is a tremendous affair. It requires that it is correctly regulated and it needs to be restricted by the rulings which are mentioned for jihaad in the Book and the Sunnah and in the speech of the People of Knowledge. The matter is not of fowdaa (chaos or anarchy) such that a person comes from the callers to fitnah (discord) and sets himself up as the leader for those people who are extremists or radicals or ignorant people, those who do not know, he becomes their leader and he says, “We will fight jihaad in Allaah’s cause.” This is counted as being one of the things that cause harm to Islaam and to the Muslims; and this is not jihaad because it is not restricted by the regulating principles which govern jihaad. And if it is not restricted by the regulating principles of jihaad then it just becomes fasaad (corruption) and it is not jihaad. And everything which exceeds its due limits then it turns over and it becomes its opposite. So they now say to those who criticise them, “You are preventing jihaad in Allaah’s cause.”
So we say, “We are not preventing jihaad in Allaah’s cause. However, we say that it is essential that jihaad is regulated by its legislated regulating principles, whereas what you people are doing is fowdaa (chaos) and it is not jihaad and Allaah did not command with it.”
So establishment of the Hajj and fighting jihaad and the Jumu`ah and the `Eed Prayer, these are from the functions of the waleeul-amr (the person in authority).
His saying, “And praying the Jumu`ah Prayer behind them is permissible,” meaning, even if they have fisq (they commit open sins), even if they have acts of disobedience, still the person prays behind them because Prayer behind them retains unity and also a faasiq (an open sinner), if he does something that is good then you do good along with him. And for this reason when they said to `Uthmaan radiyAllaahu `anhu whilst he was being besieged, “So and so leads the people in Prayer and he is not the imaam (the ruler), rather he is just an imaam of fitnah (he is just the leader of discord/tribulation).”
So `Uthmaan radiyAllaahu `anhu said, “O son of my brother, if the people do what is good then do that which is good along with them and if they do something evil then avoid their evil.” 
So if he prays then we pray along with him if he is the one in authority, even if he has open sins or acts of disobedience, because of the welfare which lies in doing that. Because the Prayer is worship and the sinful person, faasiq, if he prays then he should be encouraged upon that, supplication made for him. And the Companions they prayed behind rulers who had points against them such as al-Hajjaaj and others. The Companions of Allaah’s Messenger sallAllaahu `alayhi wa sallam prayed behind them in compliance with command of the Messenger sallAllaahu `alayhi wa sallam and in order to retain unity.
His saying, “And he should pray after it six rak`ahs.” This is a matter of fiqh; it comes here in accordance with the mention of the Jumu`ah Prayer. So the Jumu`ah Prayer has no raatibah (regular Sunnah Prayer) before it. So whoever comes to the mosque then he should pray whatever is easy for him and then sit and wait (for the imaam to come out). And if he continues praying until the imaam attends then that is more excellent upon the basis that this is unrestricted optional Prayer; it has no connection to the Jumu`ah Prayer itself. As for the raatibah (regular Sunnah Prayer) of the Jumu`ah then it comes after it. Its least amount is two rak`ahs and its greatest amount, in what is famous, is four rak`ahs with two salutations (two salaams). And there comes in one saying (within the Hanbaliyy math.hab) that it is six rak`ahs with three salutations. Therefore, its least amount will be two rak`ahs and its greatest amount is six rak`ahs, or four rak`ahs as is what is famous.
His saying “He separates between each pair of two rak`ahs. This was the saying of Ahmad ibn Hanbal.” Meaning, that does not mean that he prays six rak`ahs altogether with one salaam (salutation at the end of it). Rather six rak`ahs; every two rak`ahs with one salaam (after it); or four rak`ahs with each pair of rak`ahs before the salaam, and this is better. And it’s being ascribed to Imaam Ahmad is because the author (Imaam alBarbahaaree) was a Hanbaliyy (meaning from the students of the students of Imaam Ahmad ibn Hanbal) and he was well acquainted with the position of Imaam Ahmad. This was a report from Ahmad that it is six rak`ahs. What is famous is that it is four rak`ahs. 
 Reported by al-Bukhaariyy in his Saheeh (no. 695) from `Ubaydillaah ibn `Adiyy ibn Khiyaar with it (this narration)
 There occurs in the Masaa·il of `Abdullaah, son of Imaam Ahmad, that `Abdullaah said, “I asked my father, ‘How many rak`ahs should a man pray after Jumu`ah?’ I said, ‘What is more beloved to you (that he should pray)?’
So he said, ‘If he wishes, he can pray four after the Jumu`ah and if he wishes he can pray six; except that he should give the salutation after each two rak`ahs. That is the saying with regard to all of the (optional) Prayers of the day; all of them are in pairs.’”
Translator’s side point: There are a number of books of the students of Imaam Ahmad that report matters of fiqh from him and there are a number of separate books in that regard. There is the Masaa·il of his son `Abdullaah and Masaa·il of his student Aboo Daawood and Masaa·il of a number of other of his students. Each one is called the Masaa·il of Imaam Ahmad by such and such from his students. This one referred to here is the Masaa·il (The Questions of Fiqh) put to Imaam Ahmad, collected by his son `Abdullaah.
 Translator’s side point: In Riyaadus-Saaliheen we had the hadeeth of Ibn `Umar reported by alBukhaariyy and Muslim that the Prophet sallAllaahu `alayhi wa sallam after the Jumu`ah entered his house and prayed two rak`ahs. Likewise in Saheeh Muslim there’s a hadeeth that Allaah’s Messenger sallAllaahu `alayhi wa sallam said, “When one of you has prayed the Jumu`ah let him pray four after it.”
Shaykh Ahmad an-Najmiyy rahimahullaah mentioned this issue in his explanation and mentioned there are evidences for two and there are evidences of four.
Then he said, “And the six (praying six) is one report from Imaam Ahmad and it was the saying, from the Companions, of `Aliyy ibn Abee Taalib and Aboo Moosaa radiyAllaahu `anhumaa; and from the taabi`een (it was the saying of) `Ataa and Mujaahid (the two great imaams of Makkah from the taabi`een; `Ataa bin Abee Rabaah and Mujaahid ibn Jabr) and of Humayd ibn `Abdir-Rahmaan and it was the saying of Sufyaan ath-Thowree, great imaam.
Shaykh Ahmad preferred the saying, as is the view of Shaykhul-Islaam ibn Taymiyyah, that what is preferred in his view is: if a person prays it in his house he prays two rak`ahs and if he prays it in the mosque he prays four. (He said,) “That is more established with regard to the evidence behind it.”
Ithaaful-Qaaree bit-Ta`leeqaat `alaa Sharhis-Sunnah
(A Gift To The Reader In Annotation Of Sharh As-Sunnah)
by Shaykh Saalih ibn Fowzaan al-Fowzaan hafizahullaah
Translated by Aboo Talhah Daawood Burbank, rahimahullaah
Posted with kind permission from Dawud Burbank rahimahullaah
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