Question # 509: Some people say that night prayer in the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah is equivalent to offering them during Laylatul Qadar and they quote the hadith from Al-Tirmidhi: “There are no days in this world during which worship is more beloved to Allah, Glorious is He, than the (first) ten days (of Dhul- Hijjah). Fasting one of these days is equivalent to fasting for one year, and one night of them is equal to Lailatul-Qadr.” I did not find the hadith number anywhere, it only says that it has been taken from Al-Tirmidhi. Can you please provide the reference and tell us whether the hadith is authentic or not according to the scholars of hadith like Al-Albani (May Allah have mercy on his soul)?

bismi-llahi r-raḥmani r-raḥīm,

Assalamu ‘laikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,

All praise and thanks are due to Allah (سبحانه و تعالى), and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم).

Dear questioner,

First of all, we implore Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) to help us serve His cause and render our work for His sake.

Shorter Answer: The hadith mentioned in the question is classed as da’eef (weak) because of the weak chain of narrators/transmission according to scholars such as Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah and Shaykh al-Albani. It includes in its chain, An-Nahhas ibn Qaham who was criticized with regard to his memory, and the sub-narrator, Mas’ud ibn Wasil is also considered somewhat weak.

Long Answer: It was narrated from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said: “There are no days in this world in which worship is more beloved to Allah than the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah. Fasting on one of these days is equivalent to fasting for a year, and one night of them is equal to Laylat al-Qadr.” (Narrated by At-Tirmidhi; al-Bazzar and Ibn Majah via Abu Bakr ibn Nafi‘ al-Basri, who said: Mas‘ud ibn Wasil told us, from Nahhas ibn Qaham, from Qatadah, from Sa‘id ibn al-Musayyab, from Abu Hurayrah)

This is a da’eef isnad (weak chain of transmission) because of an-Nahhas ibn Qaham and Mas‘ud ibn Wasil. Hence the scholars of hadith unanimously agreed that it is to be classed as da’eef (weak).

At-Tirmidhi said: “This is a gharib hadith, which we know only from the hadith of Mas‘ud ibn Wasil, from an-Nahhas. I asked Muhammad – i.e., al-Bukhari – about this hadith and he did not know it except via this isnad. Some of this was also narrated from Qatadah, from Sa‘id ibn al-Musayyab, from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) in a mursal report. Yahya ibn Sa‘id criticized An-Nahhas ibn Qaham with regard to his memory.”

Al-Baghawi said: “Its isnad is da‘eef.” (Sharh as-Sunnah). Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah said: “There is some weakness in it.” (Sharh al-‘Umdah). Al-Hafizh Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani said: “Its isnad is da’eef.” (Fath al-Bari). [He also mentioned that Nahhas ibn Qahm is a weak (da’eef) narrator as mentioned in his al-Taqrib al-Tahdhib.] It was classed as da’eef by Shaykh al-Albani in as-Silsilah ad-Da’eefah.

Al-Hafizh Ibn Rajab said – after quoting this and other hadiths on this topic: “Concerning the multiplication of the reward, there are other marfuhadiths, but they are fabricated. Therefore, we turn away from them and similar fabricated reports about the virtues of the first ten days [of Dhul-Hijjah], of which there are many.” (Lata’if al-Ma‘arif)

According to Abul Hasan Hussain Ahmed (Darul Tahqiq): “[The] sub-narrator known as Mas’ud ibn Wasil is also somewhat weak. For these reasons, Shaykh Shu’ayb al-Arna’ut declared the chain of transmission to be weak (da’eef) in his editing of Jami al-Tirmidhi”

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Allahu A’lam (Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) knows best) and all Perfections belong to Allah, and all mistakes belong to me alone. May Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) forgive me, Ameen.