Is this a Hadith ?
“‘Excellent worshiper that is Suhayb! Although he did not fear God, he would disobey Him not .”
Firstly, the translation of the quote is inaccurate.
An appropriate translation would be:
‘What an excellent worshipper is Suhayb! Even if he didn’t fear Allah, he would have still not disobeyed Him.’ [due to his love for Allah]
Secondly, this quotation has been declared as baseless by the senior Hadith masters.
There has been no trace of any chain for this up to Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam)
Some writers have attributed this to Sayyiduna ‘Umar (radiyallahu’anhu). However, they haven’t provided any chain for this either.
References for all of the above: Al-Maqasidul Hasanah, Hadith: 1259, Tadribur Rawi, vol.2 pg.166 & Al-Masnu’ Hadith: 385. Also see Fatawa Hadithiyyah of Ibn Hajar Al-Haytami, pg.276.
Note 1: Sayyiduna Suhayb (radiyallahu’anhu) is a Sahabi and therefore deserves the highest respect, even if the above in particular cannot be established.
Note 2: There is a similar praise in a weak Hadith regarding Sayyiduna Salim, mawla Abi Hudhayfah (radiyallahu’anhu) in Imam Abu Nu’aym’s Hilyatul Awliya, vol.1 pg.177. This may be quoted as a merit of Sayyiduna Salim (radiyallahu’anhu).
Also see Maqasidul Hasanah, Hadith: 1259.
And Allah Ta’ala Knows best,
Answered by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar
Checked by: Moulana Haroon Abasoomar
This answer was collected from HadithAnswers.com. 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.