Sayyiduna Abu Bakr, the forerunner of all good

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by

Please cite the full narration wherein Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) praised Sayyiduna ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ud. Sayyiduna ‘Umar (radiyallahu ‘anhu) went to convey the glad tidings to ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ud, only to find that Sayyiduna Abu Bakr had already done so.



This Hadith has been reported in many Hadith collections, numerous times with variations in the wording.

Imam Hakim (rahimahullah) has declared the following version authentic and Hafiz Dhahabi concurs:

Sayyiduna ‘Ali (radiyallahu ‘anhu) says,

“I was once with Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam), Abu Bakr and other Sahabah were with as well. We passed by ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ud who was performing Salah. Upon inquiring, Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) was informed that the person performing Salah was ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ud. Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) then said, ‘Abdullah [ibn Mas’ud] recited Quran just as it was revealed.

Sayyiduna ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ud [unaware that he was being watched] then praised Allah in the best manner and made a beautiful du’a unto Allah. Then he said,

‘Allahumma inni as-aluka imanan la yartad wa na’iman la yanfad wa murafaqata Muhammadin (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) fi a’ala ‘illiyyin fi Jannatika jinanal khuld’

When Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) heard him praising Allah and heard him make this du’a, he said twice, ‘ask and you shall be granted’.

Sayyiduna ‘Ali (radiyallahu ‘anhu) then  went to convey the glad tidings, but learnt that Sayyiduna Abu Bakr had already conveyed the glad tidings to ‘Sayyiduna ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ud. Sayyiduna ‘Ali says, [Abu Bakr] was a forerunner of all good”

(Mustadrak Hakim, vol. 3 pg. 317)


Imam Ahmad (rahimahullah) has recorded a similar narration, which states that Sayyiduna ‘Umar went to give the glad tidings, but Sayyiduna ‘Abu Bakr had already done so. Upon this Sayyiduna ‘Umar said, “Whenever I competed with him, he always outdid me”

(Musnad Ahmad, with a reliable chain vol. 1 pg. 25/26, vol. 1 pg. 438 and vol. 1 pg. 446. Also see Sahih Ibn Khuzaymah, Hadith: 1156 and Sahih Ibn Hibban;Al Ihsan, Hadith: 7067 )


Also see here for a similar narration.

And Allah Ta’ala Knows best.

Answered by: Moulana Suhail Motala

Approved by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar


Checked by: Moulana Haroon Abasoomar

This answer was collected from The answers were either answered or checked by Moulana Haroon Abasoomar (rahimahullah) who was a Shaykhul Hadith in South Africa, or by his son, Moulana Muhammad Abasoomer (hafizahullah), who is a Hadith specialist. 

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