Were one hundred and twenty four thousand (124 000) Ambiya (‘alayhimus salam) sent to this world? Is there a mention of this in authentic Hadiths?
It is obligatory upon a Muslim to believe in all Ambiya (‘alayhimus salam) irrespective of their number.
There are numerous narrations which state various different numbers of the Ambiya (‘alayhimus salam) that were sent to this world. Since the exact number isn’t confirmed, the ‘Ulama of ‘Aqidah state one should not state an exact number of Ambiya, rather one should state an approximate number, like saying: ‘approximately one hundred and twenty four thousand (124 000) Ambiya were sent’
(Refer: Kitabul Musamarah, pg. 78)
The narrations which discuss the various numbers of Ambiya (‘alayhimus salam) can be found in the following books:
1) Sahih ibn Hibban; Al Ihsan, Hadith: 361
2) Musnad Ahmad, vol. 5 pg. 178 and pg. 266
3) Musnad Abu Ya’la, Hadith: 4132
Also see Fathul Bari, before Hadith: 3326
And Allah Ta’ala Knows best
Answered by: Moulana Suhail Motala
Approved by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar
Checked by: Moulana Haroon Abasoomar