Why the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, stood for the funeral of a Jew
Fatwa No: 283960

  • Fatwa Date:10-2-2015 - Rabee' Al-Aakhir 21, 1436
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Question

I am curious about the incident where the Prophet peace be upon stood up for the funeral of the dead jew. I read the following online: "The Prophet peace be upon him stood for Allah’s angels, not for dead infidels It is reported on the authority of Anas bin Malik: A jew’s bier passed by the Messenger of Allah peace be upon him and he stood; and [the companions] said: O Messenger of Allah, it is a jew’s bier. He said: But I stood for the angels. (Al-Mustadrak ‘ala al-Sahiihayn) The above hadith is Sahih on the criteria of Imam Muslim and it clearly states that the Messenger of Allah peace be upon him stood in honor of Allah’s angels, not the dead infidels. This point is proven by many other ahadiith as well." END QUOTE. Found at: https://iloveimamrabbani.wordpress.com/tag/did-the-prophet-%EF%B7%BA-stand-up-for-the-jews-funeral-no-he-did-not/ Basically, the website is claiming that the hadith in bukhari about this incident needs to be quoted within all it's context found in other ahadith where it is explained more. So my question is, did the Prophet peace be upon him stand up out of respect for the angels as that website is claiming or was it out of respect for the deceased non-muslim for being a human being as is usually claimed about this hadith?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, is His slave and Messenger.

The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, stood for the funeral for three reasons. One was that he stood for the angels. However, it is not correct to restrict his standing to this reason only. Ibn Al-Qayyim  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him stated these three reasons in his Revision of  Abu Daawood's Sunan, saying:

"The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, had three reasons for standing for the funeral:

The first reason is that he [Prophet] said: "Indeed, death is alarmingly frightful." Imaam Muslim reported this as part of the Hadeeth narrated by Jaabir  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him in which the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, said: "Indeed, death is alarmingly frightful, so if you see a funeral procession, stand up."

The second reason: The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, stood up for the angels. Anas  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him narrated: "A funeral procession passed by us so the Messenger of Allaah, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, stood up. We said, 'Oh Messenger of Allaah, it is the funeral procession of a Jew.' He said, 'We stood up for the angels.'" [An-Nasaa’i]

The third reason: because it is a soul. Qays ibn Sa‘d and Sahl ibn Hunayf  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  them said: "A funeral procession passed by the Messenger of Allaah, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, so he stood up. We said, 'It is the funeral procession of a Jew.' He, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, said: 'Is it not a soul?'" [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

The above are the three reasons confirmed about him, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam." [End of quote]

Allaah Knows best.

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