Can you shed some light on the Hadith Scholar, Imam Nu’aym ibn Hammad and his book Kitabul Fitan? Is he reliable and are the Hadiths found in this book reliable?
Imam Nu’aym ibn Hammad (rahimahullah) was a Scholar from the third century of Islam.
He reported Hadith from seniors, like, Imams: Ibrahim ibn Sa’d, Hafs ibn Ghiyath, Sufyan ibn ‘Uyaynah, ‘Abdullah ibn Al Mubarak, ‘Abdullah ibn Wahb, ‘Abdur Razzaq ibn Hammam, Waki’ ibn Al Jarrah, Yahya ibn Sa’id Al Qattan (rahimahumullah) and many others.
Imams Ibrahim ibn Ya’qub Al Juzjani, Darimi, Abu Hatim Ar Razi, Muhammad ibn Yahya Adh Dhuhli, Yahya ibn Ma’in and many others reported from him.
Imam Bukhari (rahimahullah) also accepted his Hadiths on condition that he was corroborated (مقرونا بغيره).
Several Muhaddithun like Imams Ahmad, Ibn Ma’in, ‘Ijli (rahimahumullah) have declared him reliable. However, others like Imam Nasai (rahimahullah) have declared him weak. ‘Allamah Dhahabi (rahimahullah) states, ‘Nu’aym (rahimahullah) was a senior in knowledge, however I am not inclined to his narrations [being reliable].
Hafiz Ibn Rajab Al Hambali (rahimahullah) writes: ‘Nu’aym (rahimahullah), although some have declared him reliable, [they did this, due to them] having good thoughts regarding him on account of his firmness on Sunnah and his rigidness on refuting the innovators. They [The Muhaddithun] have said that he would [unintentionally] err [when narrating Hadiths]. When the Muhaddithun realised that he has erred in many Hadiths, they declared him weak.’
References for all of the above:
Tahdhibul Kamal, vol. 29, pgs. 466-481, Siyaru A’alamin Nubala, vol. 10 pg. 600, Mizanul I’tidal, vol. 5 pg. 29, Jami’ul ‘Ulumi Wal Hikam, vol. 2 pg. 270.
As for his book, Kitabul Fitan, each narration will have to be inspected individually. It is not possible to pass a blanket ruling. Those Muhaddithun who were of the view that he was weak, will be of the view that all the Hadiths in this book are weak.
However, the Muhaddithun have allowed the usage of weak Hadiths for topics like the ones discussed in this book.
And Allah Ta’ala Knows best.
Answered by: Moulana Suhail Motala
Approved by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar