Is Waraqah bin Nawfal considered as one of the Sahabah?

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by

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My question who was the second person who embraced Islam after Khadija (RA). It’s unanimously accepted was the first person and women to do so, and the second person and first man to accept Islam was Abu Bakr (RA).

However, according to the Hadith in Bukhari narrated by A’isha (RA) telling us about the Prophet’s (SAW) experience when he received his first revelation he (SAW) was taken to Waraqah ibn Nawfal (RA) who was Khadija’s (RA) cousin because Khuwaylid and Naufal were brothers according to Seerah authorities like ibn Ishaq (RA). In the same Hadith it is narrated that Waraqah accepted him to be a Prophet which, is why he prophecies eventually the people of Makkah will exile him (SAW) from the city, and how he wished he was there to support him, but passed away shortly.

Source for the above is Sahih Bukhari 4, Sahih Muslim 160.

Now Waraqah ibn Naufal (RA) is in Jannah according to sound narrations:

Did Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) see Waraqah ibn Nawfal in Jannah?

Moulana Suhail MotalaJune 18, 2015       Authentication


Is this Hadith authentic?

Al Hakim reported from Sayyidatuna ‘Aaishah (radiyallahu ‘anha) that Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said:

“Do not slander Waraqah ibn Nawfal for I have seen that he will have one or two gardens in Jannah”


Imam Hakim (rahimahullah) has recorded this narration and has declared it as authentic.

(Mustadrak Hakim, vol. 2 pg. 609)

Hafiz Abu Bakr Al Bazzar (rahimahullah) has also recorded two versions of this narration. The first via an unbroken chain (متصلا) and the second mursalan (مرسلا), [where the Tabi’i attributes a Hadith directly to Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam), omitting his source]

(Refer: Majma’uz Zawaid, vol. 9 pg. 416)

Imam Daraqutni (rahimahullah) and Hafiz Ibn Kathir (rahimahullah) have preferred the version where the Tabi’i attributed the Hadith directly to Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam)

(Refer: Al Bidayah Wan Nihayah, vol. 3 pg. 198.)

Nevertheless, the narration in question is still suitable to quote and is further supported by the following narrations:

1) Sayyidatuna Khadijah (radiyallahu ‘anha) asked Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) regarding Waraqah ibn Nawfal. Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said:

” I had seen him in a dream dressed in white clothing. If he were destined for Jahannam I don’t think he would have been wearing white”

(Musnad Ahmad, vol. 6 pg. 65 Hafiz Ibn Kathir has declared the chain of narrators as sound –hasan-. Al Bidayah Wan Nihayah, vol. 3 pg. 197)

2) Sayyiduna Jabir (radiyallahu ‘anhu) reports that Rasulullah (sallalahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said:

“I saw him [Waraqah ibn Nawfal] walking in the center of Jannah, wearing a silk garment”

(Musnad Abu Ya’la with a weak chain, Hadith: 2047. Refer: Majma’uz Zawaid, vol. 9 pg. 416)


Some Muhadith even concluded he was a Sahabi like ibn Hajar (RA):

I know he was one of the Hunafa, and such people are in Jannah which, is further backed up by this narration of Zayd ibn Amr bin Naufal (RA) where the Prophet (SAW) said “Zayd will be raised as a nation by himself.” Not sure of the reference.

Now we know that the true linguistic meaning of Sahaba is the one who saw the Prophet (SAW), believed in his message, and died upon the same message. So, since some Ulema confirm he was a Sahabi, and is in Jannah according to sound narrations can we deduce there is a chance Abu Bakr (RA) was not the first Sahabi accept Islam, but was Waraqah ibn Naufal (RA).


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

It is apparent that Waraqah bin Nawfal testified to the prophethood of Rasulullah (salallahu alayhi wa sallam). 

However, there is a difference of opinion on whether Waraqah bin Nawfal is considered a Sahabi or not, since he passed away before Rasulullah (salallahu alayhi wa sallam) started calling people towards Islam. [i][ii][iii]

Sohail ibn Arif,
Student Darul Iftaa
Chicago, USA

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.


 ذكره الطّبريّ، والبغويّ، وابن قانع، وابن السّكن، وغيرهم في الصحابة…فهذا ظاهره أنه أقر بنبوته، ولكنه مات  [i]

 قبل أن يدعو رسول اللَّه صلى اللَّه عليه وآله وسلم الناس إلى الإسلام فيكون مثل بحيرا وفي إثبات الصحبة له نظر

الإصابة في تمييز الصحابة، ٦/ ٤٧٥ 


وتقدم الكلام على إيمان ورقة بن نوفل بما وجد من الوحي ومات في الفترة رضي الله عنه [ii]

البداية والنهاية، ٣/ ١٨ 


وقال الكرماني فإن قلت ما قولك في ورقة أيحكم بإيمانه قلت لا شك أنه كان مؤمنا بعيسى عليه السلام وأما [iii]

 الإيمان بنبينا عليه السلام فلم يعلم أن دين عيسى قد نسخ عند وفاته أم لا ولئن ثبت أنه كان منسوخا في ذلك الوقت فالأصح أن الإيمان التصديق وهو قد صدقه من غير أن يذكر ما ينافيه 

عمدة القاري، ١/ ٦٣