Friday prayer

source :Osoul Global Center

Friday prayer is a duty on all male Muslims. Those who are free, sane, attained puberty, not travelling, have no excuse to miss it. It is performed at the time of Zuhr prayer and it is invalid without a sermon (speech). 

Friday prayer

Friday prayer is obligatory to every male,  

:as Allah says

‘Believers! When the call to prayer is made on Friday, go straightaway to the prayer and leave off your trading. This is best for you, if you but knew it.’

(9:62)

:The Prophet (peace be upon him) says

‘Attending Friday prayers is obligatory to everyone who has attained puberty.’

:He also said

‘Some people shall cease to absent themselves from Friday prayer, or else Allah will seal their hearts and they would then be counted among those who are oblivious.’

Related by Muslim, hadith No. 865

 Al-Nawawi said: ‘This hadith makes clear that Friday prayer is obligatory to every individual (male) Muslim.’[1]

:As the Prophet (peace be upon him) says

‘Friday prayer is a duty binding on every Muslim.’

Related by Abu Dawud, hadith No. 1,067; al-Bayhaqi in Al-Sunan al-Kubra, hadith No. 5,578

On whom it is binding

Friday prayer is a duty binding on every Muslim male who is free, sane, having attained puberty and is present in the area where he resides. This means that a person to whom any of these does not apply is exempt from Friday prayer. 

:The Prophet (peace be upon him) says

‘Friday prayer with a congregation is a duty binding on every Muslim, except four: a slave, a woman, a child or an ill person.’

It is not binding on a person who is travelling because the Prophet (peace be upon him) did not offer Friday prayer on any of his travels. When he offered the pilgrimage, it happened that the day of attendance at Arafat was a Friday, but the Prophet did not offer Friday prayer then. He offered Thuhur and combined it with Asr. A traveller who finds himself in a town where Friday prayer is offered should offer it with the Muslim community. Moreover, if a slave, a woman, a child, an ill person or a traveller attends it, it is acceptable and replaces Thuhur prayer.

Timing

Friday prayer is offered at the same time as Thuhur prayer, i.e. just after the sun has started to move down at midday, up until the shade of any object is equal to its height.

:Anas reports

‘The Prophet (peace be upon him) used to offer Friday prayer when the sun had started to go down.’

Related by al-Bukhari, hadith No. 904

This is what is reported to have been done by the Prophet’s Companions.[2] It was also reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) used to pray it before that. Some scholars say that it is permissible to pray it about half an hour before thuhur time when needed.

The sermon

Giving a sermon is a rukn of Friday prayer, and it is invalid without it, because the Prophet (peace be upon him) did it all the time, never omitting it. It is of two parts that must be completed before the prayer.[3] The Imam must praise Allah, say the testimony of Tawheed and salutation and to recite at least one ayah. 

What is recommended in respect of the sermon

It is recommended to include in the sermon, or khutbah, a supplication for the Muslim community praying to Allah to grant them what gives them a happy life in this world and in the life to come, and to pray to rulers to be God-fearing and guided towards what benefits their communities. This is following the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) practice, because ‘the Prophet (peace be upon him) used to supplicate when he gave the khutbah on Friday,

:and as he supplicated

‘he would point out with his finger.’

Related by Muslim, hadith No. 874

It is also recommended that one person gives both parts of the khutbah and leads the prayer, raising his voice, and standing up when giving the khutbah.

:Allah mentions that the Prophet gave the khutbah standing up

‘When people see some trade or entertainment, they head off towards it, leaving you standing there.’

(62:11)

:Jabir ibn Samurah reported

‘Allah’s messenger used to give the khutbah standing up, then he sat down, then stood up and continued the khutbah. If anyone tells you that he gave the khutbah seated, he does not tell you the truth.’

Related by Muslim, hadith No. 862

It is recommended that the imam should stand on a pulpit or at a high spot so that people could hear and see him better. He is recommended to sit down briefly between the two parts of the khutbah,

:as Abdullah ibn Umar said

‘The Prophet (peace be upon him) used to give two khutbahs standing up, separating them by sitting down.’

Related by al-Bukhari, hadith No. 928; Muslim, hadith No. 861; al-Daraqutni, hadith No. 160

It is also recommended that both khutbahs should be short, and the second should be shorter than the first.

:Ammar quotes the Prophet (peace be upon him) as saying

‘When a man makes his prayer long and his khutbah short, he demonstrates his good understanding. Therefore, make your prayer long and your khutbah short.’

Related by Muslim, hadith No. 869

It is also recommended that the imam should offer the greeting of salam to the congregation when he stands on the pulpit facing them.

:Jabir reports

‘When the Prophet (peace be upon him) stood up on the pulpit, he would offer the salam greeting.’

Related by Ibn Majah, hadith No. 1,109

He is also recommended to sit on the pulpit until the adhan is completed.

:Ibn Umar reported

‘The Prophet (peace be upon him) used to give two khutbahs, he would sit on the pulpit until the call for prayer is finished, then he would stand up and give the khutbah.’ 

Related by Abu Dawud, hadith No. 1,092

What is forbidden in Friday prayer

When the imam is giving the khutbah it is forbidden for people in the congregation to talk.

:The Prophet (peace be upon him) says

‘Whoever talks on Friday when the imam is giving the khutbah is like an ass carrying books.’

Related by Ahmad, hadith No. 2,033; al-Tabarani in Al-Mu'jam al-Kabir, hadith No. 12,563.

:He also says

‘If on Friday when the imam is delivering the khutbah you say to your friend, “listen”, then you have said what is unacceptable.’

Related by al-Bukhari, hadith No. 394; Muslim, hadith No. 85

It is also forbidden to walk forward, stepping over people’s shoulders as they sit to listen to the khutbah, in order to reach a place in front.

:The Prophet  (peace be upon him) said to someone who did just that

‘Sit down. You have hurt people and caused them inconvenience.’

Related by Ahmad, hadith No. 17,674; Abu Dawud, hadith No. 1,118; al-Nassa’i, hadith No. 1,399; Ibn Majah, hadith No. 1,115; al-Hakim, hadith No. 424

Needless to say, to do so hurts people and diverts their attention from listening to the khutbah. Only the imam may do so if he cannot otherwise reach his place. It is also reprehensible to separate two people and sit between them.

:The Prophet (peace be upon him) says

‘Whoever takes a bath on Friday then he goes to the mosque, without separating between two people and he offers his obligatory prayer , he is forgiven whatever he might have done in between the (last) two Fridays.’

Related by al-Bukhari, hadith No. 910

Minimum requirements

If one arrives at the mosque with the Friday prayer already in progress, he is deemed to have joined the prayer correctly if he joins completing at least the second rak'ah. He will need then to add another rak'ah after the imam has finished.

:Abu Hurayrah quotes the Prophet (peace be upon him) as saying

‘Whoever completes one rak'ah of Friday prayer (with the imam) is considered as having offered this prayer.’

Related by al-Nassa’i, hadith No. 1,425; Ibn Khuzaymah, hadith No. 1,850; al-Tabarani in Musnad al-Shamiyyin, hadith No. 2,885; al-Daraqutni, hadith No. 1,596.

If he prays with the imam less than one rak'ah, he completes his prayer as Thuhurprayer, i.e. 4- rak'ahs.

Form

Friday prayer consists of two rak'ahs with the imam reciting the Qur’an aloud in both. The Prophet (peace be upon him) did that, and what he did is part of his Sunnah. This is universally agreed by scholars.[4]

‘It is recommended that the imam recites Surah 62, Al-Jumu'ah, after al-Fatihah in the first rak'ah, and Surah 63, The Hypocrites, in the second.’

Related by Muslim, hadith No. 879

‘or Surahs 87 and 88, because the Prophet (peace be upon him) did that.’

Related by Muslim, hadith No. 878

Recommended in Friday prayer

1-It is recommended, i.e. a Sunnah, to go to the mosque early to earn great reward.

:Abu Hurayrah reports that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said

‘Whoever takes a bath on Friday, just like the one to remove ceremonial impurity, and goes to the mosque very early is like one who offers a camel (for charity); and whoever goes in the second hour is like one who offers a cow; and the one who goes in the third hour is like one who offers a horned ram; and whoever goes in the fourth hour is like one offering a chicken; while the one going in the fifth hour is like one offering an egg. Then when the imam starts, the angels attend to listen to Allah’s praises.’

Related by al-Bukhari, hadith No. 881; Muslim, hadith No. 850

:The Prophet (peace be upon him) also says

‘Whoever cleans himself and takes a bath on Friday, goes to the mosque really early, walking rather than riding, gets close to the imam, listens and says nothing frivolous, will have for every step he makes, the reward a whole year,  fasting the day and worshpping  at night .’

Related by Ahmad, hadith No. 16,172; Abu Dawud, hadith No. 345; al-Tirmidhi, hadith No. 496; al-Nassa’i, hadith No. 1,384; Ibn Majah, hadith No. 1,087

2-It is also a Sunnah that one should take a bath on Friday, as noted in the hadith quoted earlier and reported by Abu Hurayrah. In fact, everyone should be keen to take a bath on Friday, particularly if one is known to have an unpleasant smell. Some scholars consider it a duty, because of a hadith

:reported by Abu Sa'id al-Khudri, quoting the Prophet (peace be upon him)

‘A bath on Friday is a duty for every Muslim who has attained puberty.’

Related by al-Bukhari, hadith No. 879; Muslim, hadith No. 846

However, the most authentic opinion is that it is highly recommended.

3-Furthermore, it is strongly recommended to wear perfume and take care of one’s cleanliness, removing whatever needs to be removed of one’s body, such as clipping one’s nails. This is more than taking a bath, as it involves removing bad smells and their causes, such as removing any hair that is recommended to be shaved, such as pubic hair, armpit hair, trimming one’s moustache. 

Though there is no authentic hadeeth recommending this, there are a lot of evidences stating that the companions and the scholars of different schools of thought recommended it.

4-It is recommended also to wear some of one’s best clothes. Ibn Umar reports: ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab saw a fine suit near the door of the mosque, and said: “Allah’s messenger, you may wish to buy this suit and wear it on Fridays and to receive delegations when they come.”’ Al-Bukhari considers this report to indicate the preferability of wearing one’s best clothes for Friday prayer. Hence, he enters it in his anthology under the heading: ‘Wearing one’s best clothes.’ Ibn Hajar said: ‘This hadith is treated as evidence supporting the idea of wearing good clothes for Friday prayer because the Prophet (peace be upon him) approved Umar’s idea of maintaining good appearance on Fridays. Moreover,

:the Prophet (peace be upon him) says

‘Anyone of you will do well to buy two garments to use on Fridays instead of the two he wears for attending to his work.’

Related by Abu Dawud, hadith No. 1,078; Ibn Majah, hadith No. 1,095; al-Tabarani in Al-Mu'jam al-Kabir, hadith No. 373.

5-It is also a Sunnah to pray to Allah to grant our Prophet (peace be upon him)praise and peace on the preceding night of Friday and during the daytime,as he told us to do so.[5]

6-Another Sunnah is to recite in the Fajr prayer Surahs 33 and 76, as the Prophet (peace be upon him) frequently did so, and to recite Surah 18, during the day.

:The Prophet (peace be upon him) says

‘Whoever recites Surah 18, The Cave, on Friday will have a column of light rising from underneath his feet to the sky, giving him light on the Day of Judgement, and will be forgiven what he does in between the last two Friday prayers.’

Related by al-Nassa’i in Al-Sunan al-Kubra, hadith No. 10,722; al-Hakim, vol. 2, p. 399

7-When one enters the mosque on Friday or any other time, he is instructed not to sit down until he has offered a prayer of two rak'ahs in greeting to the mosque,because the Prophet  (peace be upon him) ordered this.[6]

 If the imam is giving his speech, the entrant is advised to make his two rak'ahs short.

8-Another Sunnah is frequent supplication on Friday, hoping to make his supplication at the time when prayers are answered.

:The Prophet (peace be upon him) says

‘In every Friday, there is  an hour, in which any Muslim who happens to be standing up in prayer at that time, and prays to Allah for anything, Allah will certainly grant it to him or her.’

Related by al-Bukhari, hadith No. 935; Muslim, hadith No. 852

references

  1.  Al-Nawawi, Sharh Sahih Muslim, vol. 6, p. 152.
  2. Ibn Hajar, Fath al-Bari, vol. 2, p. 450.
  3.  Ibn Qudamah, Al-Mughni, vol. 2, p. 294.
  4. Related by Muslim, hadith No. 878.
  5. Related by Ibn Majah, hadith No. 1,637; al-Hakim, vol. 2, p. 457
  6. Related by al-Bukhari, hadith No. 930; Muslim, hadith  No. 875

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