by Imam Ahmad Raza Khan
(May Allah shower mercy upon him)
(English Translation by Aqib Farid Qadri)
What do the scholars of Islam say regarding this issue: Is there any evidence in Hadeeth to prove that the Holy Prophet ﷺ is the Intercessor (on the day of judgement)? Please give a detailed explanation – may you be rewarded.
Purity is to Allah! Listening to such questions really shocks and surprises – for to be called a Muslim and claiming to be a follower of the Sunnah whilst being afflicted by the disease of doubting such clear matters of faith – this is yet another sign that Doomsday is nigh!
Are the Ahadeeth regarding Intercession such that they could be hidden from anyone? Scores of Sahaba, hundreds of Tabeyeen and thousands of Muhadettheen have narrated them – all books of Hadeeth – the Saheehs, the Masnads, the Ma’ajims, the Jawameys and the Musannafs –are all full of them. Each & every living person of the Ahle-Sunnah, even the women and children – to the extent that unlettered villagers know about the basic beliefs – the vision of Allah, the intercession of the Prophet – these are upon the tongue of every child. (Praise be to Allah, and peace & blessings be upon the Prophet).
This humble servant has collected such Ahadeeth in the detailed treatise named “Sama’a wa Ta’ah le Ahadeeth al-Shafa’ah”. (Hearing and Accepting the Ahadeeth regarding Intercession).
I present here a very brief and concise answer of 40 Ahadeeth, and before them a few verses of the Holy Qur’an:
PROOFS FROM HOLY QUR’AN
Verse # 1
“It is likely your Lord will set you on a place where everyone will praise you”.
It is reported in Hadeeth that the Holy Prophet ﷺ, the Intercessor of the sinners, was asked, “What is the Maqam Mahmoud (Place of Praise)?” He said, “That is Intercession.” 
Verse # 2
And indeed your Lord will soon give you so much that you will be pleased.
Dailimi has reported from Hazrat Maula Ali Radiallahu Anh, the Commander of the Faithful, that when this verse was revealed, the Intercessor of the sinners ﷺ said, “When Allah, the Supreme, has promised that he will make me pleased, I shall not be pleased even if just one of my followers remains in Hell.” (O Allah – Blessings & peace and abundance be upon him).
Tabarani in Ma’jam Awsat and Bazzaaz in Musnad narrate from Hazrat Maula Ali Radiallahu Anh that the Intercessor of the sinners ﷺ says, “I shall keep on interceding for my Ummah until my Lord will proclaim, “O Mohammed! Are you now satisfied?” I shall say, “O my Lord! Yes I am satisfied.” 
Verse # 3
And seek the forgiveness of the sins of your close ones and for the common believing men and women.” 
In this verse, Allah the Supreme, commands his Noble Prophet to seek forgiveness of the sins of the Muslim men and Muslim women from Him – so what else is intercession defined as?
Verse # 4
And if they, when they have wronged their own souls, come humbly to you (O dear Prophet Mohammed – peace and blessings be upon him) and seek forgiveness from Allah, and the Noble Messenger intercedes for them, they will certainly find Allah as the Most Acceptor Of Repentance, the Most Merciful.
In this verse, Allah the Supreme, commands the Muslims that having sinned, they should humbly come to the august court of the Noble Prophet and plead him to intercede – so when the beloved intercedes, He will surely forgive them!!
Verse # 5
And when it is said to them, “Come! Allah’s Noble Messenger may seek forgiveness for you” – they turn their heads away.
This verse highlights the wretched state of the hypocrites – that they do not seek the intercession of the Holy Prophet ﷺ – the Intercessor of the sinners. So if they do not seek it now, they will not get it in the hereafter, and those who do not get it then – will never get relief. May Allah benefit us with his intercession in this world and in the hereafter. (Aameen)
PROOFS FROM AHADEETH (Narrated Traditions)
Most famous Ahadeeth regarding Intercession 
The Ahadeeth regarding the major intercession make quite clear the picture of the Day of Resurrection – when the day will be so long as if it will never end, the sun overhead and hell close by. On that day, the sun will be set ablaze with its heat of 10 years combined, and brought close over the heads – thirst will be so intense that may Allah protect from it, the heat so severe that may Allah save us from it. Sweat will accumulate deep into the ground and swell above it reaching higher than peoples’ necks – were boats to be introduced, they would sail – people getting submerged in their own sweat – and hearts will rise up to the throats with fear.
Among these great calamities, people will get distressed with themselves and roam here and there, seeking an intercessor. They will go to Adam, Nooh, Ibrahim, Moosa and Eisa – and get the same negative answer. All the Prophets will answer in a similar fashion thus – “This high rank does not befit me” – “I am incapable of this” – “I cannot accomplish this” – “To each his own, to each his own” – “Go to someone else.” (Peace and blessings be upon all the prophets).
So finally after having been to all the Prophets, people will turn to the Holy Prophet – the Seal of the Prophets, the Leader of all mankind, the Intercessor of the sinners, the Mercy unto the entire creation ﷺ – and he will answer, “I am for the intercession – I am for the intercession.”
He will then bow down in prostration to his Lord: his Lord the Supreme, will proclaim, “O Mohammed! Lift up your head and speak, it will be heard! And seek, it will be granted! And intercede, for your intercession is acceptable!”
This is the Station of Praise (Maqam-e-Mahmoud) – where his praise will be hymned by all the former and latter beings and will become evident to all, the proponents and opponents alike!
The honour and rank of our Master in the sight of Allah is unparalleled and is for none except him, and similarly in the sight of Allah, his greatness is unequalled by anyone. All praise is to Allah, the Lord of the worlds. It is due to this that Allah will, in His infinite wisdom, instil in the hearts of men the thought of approaching other Prophets at first, and then after being rejected from there to humbly come in his august presence – so that it may become very clear to all that the lofty rank of intercession belongs only to him, and no one else can dare to attempt open the gates of intercession. All praise is to Allah, the Lord of the worlds.
The above Ahadeeth are found in Saheeh Bukhari and Saheeh Muslim, and all other books of Hadeeth – and these Ahadeeth are well known & popular among Muslims – the long list of books does not need mention here. For one who doubts, he may pick up Mishkaat-ul-Masabeeh (or its translation) or have it read by any learned Muslim. Furthermore, in these Ahadeeth it is mentioned that after the first intercession, the Holy Prophet ﷺ, the Intercessor of the sinners, will repeat the intercession several times over; and each time, Allah the Supreme will proclaim the same words and each time the Holy Prophet will get absolved a countless number of bondmen.
Other than the above well known Ahadeeth, I present a collection of 40 Ahadeeth that normally do not reach the common folk, so that the faith of Muslims may be strengthened by them, and the deniers may burn in jealousy – especially those Ahadeeth which shall refute the unscrupulous, deviant & wicked wrong doers who have in their writings attempted to change the very meaning of intercession and tried to hide their rejection of intercession by changing its definition.
These Ahadeeth will make clear that our Master is the chosen and appointed one for intercession – he only is the refuge of the sinners, from him only is the succour for the friendless – contrary to what one deviant alleges that “whomever Allah wills, He will decree as an intercessor”.
These Ahadeeth will give the glad tidings that the intercession of our Beloved Prophet is not just for those who have accidentally sinned and are ashamed and continuously fearful of their deeds – as one wicked wrongdoer has claimed thus “The theft has been proven upon the thief, but he is not a habitual thief and he has not adopted theft as his profession – but rather the theft was committed accidentally due to his own sheer bad luck – so he is repentant and cries day and night (so for such is the intercession)”. No, surely not! I swear by Allah the Supreme Who has appointed the Holy Prophet ﷺ as the Intercessor of the sinners, that his intercession is for the utterly sinful, wicked and oppressive Muslims like us who are so steeped in sins that even sins are ashamed of them.
Ahadeeth # 1 & 2
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners said, “Allah gave me the option of choosing between the power of intercession or having half of my Ummah admitted to Paradise without any reckoning. I chose the power of intercession because that is more important and will be more useful. Do you assume that my intercession is for the pious Muslims? No, on the contrary, it is for those sinners who are steeped in sins and have committed grave crimes.” 
O Allah – Peace and abundant blessings be upon the Holy Prophet! And all praise is to Allah, the Lord of the worlds.
Hadeeth # 3.
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners said, “My intercession is for those among my Ummah who have been destroyed by sins!”
That is certainly the truth – O my intercessor, may I be sacrificed for you!
Ahadeeth # 4 to 8.
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners said, “My intercession is for those among my Ummah who have committed major sins.”
O Allah – Peace and abundant blessings be upon the Holy Prophet! And all praise is to Allah, the Lord of the worlds.
Hadeeth # 9.
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners said, “My intercession is for the sinful among my Ummah.” On this Abu Darda Radiallahu Anh submitted, “Even if he is an adulterer or a thief?” He replied, Â“Yes – even if he is an adulterer, even if he is a thief – contrary to the wishes of Abu Darda!!”
Ahadeeth # 10 & 11
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners said, “I shall intercede, on the Day of Judgement, for more persons than the total number of trees, stones and pebbles on the face of this earth.” 
Hadeeth # 12.
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners said, “My intercession is for every such person who sincerely bore witness that ‘None is worthy of worship except Allah’ – while his heart confirmed what his tongue uttered.”
Hadeeth # 13.
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners said, “Intercession has much more scope for the Ummah, for it is for every such person who dies on faith.”
Hadeeth # 14.
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners said, “I shall go towards Hell and knock at its door, so it will be opened for me. I will enter it – and praise Allah with such praise that has never been done by anyone before me, nor shall it ever be done by anyone after me – and shall remove from it every such person who has with a sincere heart said ‘None is worthy of worship except Allah’.”
Hadeeth # 15.
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners said, “Pulpits of gold will be arranged for the Prophets and they will sit on them, and my pulpit will remain empty as I will not sit on it – but I shall stand humbly before my Lord fearing that I may be sent into Paradise while my Ummah remains behind me. I shall then pray, “O my Lord! My Ummah! My Ummah!” Allah the Supreme will proclaim, “O Mohammed! What is your wish regarding what I should do with your Ummah?” I shall submit, “O my Lord! Settle their accounts quickly!” So I will continue to intercede until I get letters to get released those who had already been sent to hell – to the extent that Maalik, the custodian of hell, will exclaim, “O Mohammed! You have not left even a bit of the Lord’s wrath among your Ummah!” 
Ahadeeth # 16 to 21.
All these 6 Ahadeeth report that the Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners said, “I have been appointed as the Intercessor, and intercession has been bestowed exclusively to me. Other than me, no one else has been given this rank.” 
Ahadeeth # 22 & 23.
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners said, “Although thousands of prayers of the Prophets are accepted, they are also bestowed with one special prayer from Allah – that they may ask whatever they desire and it will certainly be granted. All the Prophets up to Prophet Eisa have utilised their privileged prayers in this world whereas I have saved it for the hereafter – and that is my Intercession for my Ummah on the day of judgement. My intercession is for all persons of my Ummah who have left this world with faith.”
O Allah – grant us the intercession, by the honour of the Prophet with you! Aameen.
Allaho Akbar!! O the sinners of this Ummah! Do you not see the extreme compassion and mercy of our Master the Holy Prophet ﷺ upon you? For he was bestowed three such prayers from Allah the Supreme – to seek whatever he wished – and he did not seek anything for himself, but assigned them just for you. He sought two things in this world – these two were also for you – and has reserved one for the hereafter – for your dire need on that day, when except for our compassionate & merciful Master there will be none providing help, none removing your calamities.
Allah the Almighty, has rightly said, “Your falling into hardship aggrieves him, most concerned for your well being, for the Muslims most compassionate, most merciful.” 
By Allah! By oath of the One who has made our Master so merciful upon us, no mother can have so much love and affection for her only son as much as he has for every single person of his Ummah! O Allah – You indeed know our limitations and weaknesses, and You indeed know the lofty rights of his greatness upon us – so O Allah, the Omnipotent, the Supreme Being, the Great! Shower your choicest, abundant, auspicious blessings upon him and his progeny that befit his rights and that suffice his mercy!
Praise be to Allah! And what has the Ummah done in lieu of his mercy? Some raise doubts about his high status, some are sceptical of his power of intercession, some equal his rank to themselves, some get upset when he is glorified – while some allege acts of love to be inventions and some declare acts of respect and honour to be polytheism! May Allah save & protect us!! Aameen.
Hadeeth # 24.
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners said, “Allah the Supreme granted me three prayers, so I have twice prayed that ‘O Allah, forgive my Ummah! O Allah forgive my Ummah!’ And I have reserved the last one for the day when the entire creation will approach me with their needs, even Prophet Ibrahim!”
Hadeeth # 25.
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners submitted to his Lord, “You have granted such and such favours to the other Prophets!” So Allah the Supreme proclaimed, “What I have granted you, is better than all of that – I have preserved Intercession for you and not given this to anyone else but you.” 
Hadeeth # 26.
The Holy Prophet ﷺ the Intercessor of the Sinners, said, “On the day of judgement, I shall be the Leader of the Prophets, and their orator and the owner of their intercession – and I do not say this with any pride.” 
Ahadeeth # 27 to 40.
The Holy Prophet ﷺ, the Intercessor of the Sinners, said, “My intercession on the day of judgement is a reality – so whoever does not believe in it will not deserve it.” 
The unfortunate soul who belies intercession must therefore ponder upon the above mass narrated Hadeeth – and have pity upon himself by believing in the Intercession of our Master the Holy Prophet. ﷺ
O Allah! Make us worthy of his intercession in this world and in the hereafter. O Allah, the Supreme! Shower your choicest abundant auspicious blessings upon our Master and his progeny and upon all his followers until the day of judgement!
Peace & blessings be upon all the Prophets, and May Allah be well pleased with the Companions. Aameen.
 Intercession: Definition – To plead in favor of another, especially a prayer or petition to Allah on behalf of another. Synonyms – Intervention, mediation. Readers must note that Allah is the highest authority, and therefore CANNOT plead or intercede on behalf of somebody. He the Acceptor of intercession, and the Supreme judge. It is He who will grant permission to intercede and towards Him is directed all intercession. This is what is meant by the verse “Proclaim, ‘To Allah only belongs all intercession!’ (Surah Zumar 39:44)
 Hadeeth: Prophetic Narrations or Traditions. Plural – Ahadeeth.
 Surah Bani Israel 17:79
 Surah Al Duha 93:5
 Ummah – means Followers or Nation
 Allama Suyuti in Al-Dur ul-Mansoor Fi Tafseer Al-Masoor
 Surah Mohammed 47:19
 Surah Nisa’a 4:64
 Surah Munafiqoon 63:5
 Words from Saheeh Bukhari, Sunan Ibn Majah, Majma Zawaid. Similar subject message in Saheeh Muslim and host of other books
 Imam Ahmad in his Musnad from Hazrat Abdullah ibn Umar. Ibn Maja from Hazrat Abu Musa Asha’ari
 Ibn Adi in Majma Zawaid, from Hazrat Ummul-Momineen Umme Salma
 Abu Daud, Tirmizi, Ibn Habban, Hakim & Baihaqi from Hazrat Anas bin Maalik. Tirmizi, Ibn Majah, Ibn Habban & Hakim from Hazrat Jabir bin Abdullah. Tibrani in Majam Kabeer from Hazrat Abdullah ibn Abbas. Khateeb Baghdadi from Hazrat Abdullah ibn Umar Farouk and from Hazrat Ka’ab bin Ajrah
 Abu Bakr Ahmad ibn Ali Baghdadi from Hazrat Abu Darda
 Tibrani & Baihaqi from Hazrat Buraidah. Tibrani in Majam Awsat from Hazrat Anas
 Bukhari, Muslim, Hakim & Baihaqi from Hazrat Abu Hurairah.
 Ahmed, Tibrani & Bazaaz from Hazrat Mua’az ibn Jabal
 Tibrani in Majam Awsat from Hazrat Abu Hurairah
 Hakim with sound chains and Tibrani & Baihaqi from Hazrat Abdullah ibn Abbas
 Bukhari, Muslim, Nasai from Hazrat Jabir bin Abdullah. Ahmad, Bukhari in Al-Tareekh, Bazzaar, Tibrani, Baihaqi and Abu Nuaim from Abdullah ibn Abbas. Ahmad and Bazzaar, Darimi, Ibn Shaibah, Abu Yuala, Abu Nuaim & Baihaqi from Abu Zarr. Tibrani in Ma’jam Awsat from Hazrat Saeed Khudri. Tibrani in Ma’jam Kabeer from Saeb ibn Yazeed. Ahmad with sound chains and Ibn Abi Shaibah & Tibrani from Hazrat Moosa Ash’ari. Words are those of Jabir.
 In the narrations of Hazrat Abdullah ibn Abbas, Hazrat Abu Saeed Khudri and Hazrat Moosa Ash’ari, the same subject as mentioned as in the narrations of Ahmed, Bukhari & Muslim from Hazrat Anas. Bukhari & Muslim from Hazrat Abu Huraira
 Surah Tauba 9:128
 Saheeh Muslim from Hazrat Ubai ibn Ka’ab
 Baihaqi from Hazrat Abu Hurairah
 Ibn Abi Shaibah, Tirmizi, Ibn Majah and Hakim – from Hazrat Ubai Ibn Ka’ab
 Ibn Manie’ from 14 Sahaba