Explanation of the Athar


 Ar-Rabee ibn Khuthaym


بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

الرَّبِيعَ بْنَ خُثَيْمٍ كَانَ يَقُولُ : لاَ خَيْرَ فِي الْكَلاَمِ إِلَّا فِي تِسْعٍ : تَحْمِيدُ اللَّهِ , وَتَكْبِيرُ اللَّهِ , وَتَسْبِيحُ اللَّهِ , وَتَهْلِيلُ اللَّهِ , وَأَمْرُكَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ , وَنَهْيُكَ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ , وَسُؤَالُكَ الْخَيْرَ , وَتَعَوُّذُكَ مِنَ الشَّرِّ , وَقِرَاءَةُ الْقُرْآنِ

Ar-Rabee’ ibn Khuthaym said: The best speech on the tongue is found in nine words; Al-Hamdulilah, Allahu Akbar, Subhan-Allah, la-ilaha illallah, commanding good and preventing evil, seeking refuge from evil, and reading the Quran.



Collected by: Ibn Abi Shaybah [ 14/16] Ibn Hannad in Zuhd [1109] Ibn Abi Dunya in somt[remaining silent] [87]


Status of the Athar : This is Isnad is Sahih. This Athar is in the Musanaf of Ibn Abee Shaybah with an authentic chain.

There are 3 men in the chain between Ibn Abi Shaybah and Ar-Rabee

  • Saeed ibn Abdillah ibn Ar-Rabee ibn Khuthaym [ Kufi/ reliable] [1]


  • Nusayr ibn Du’luq [ Kufi/ reliable] [2]



  • Bakr ibn Ma’iz [Kufi / Reliable] Tahtheeb by Imam Al-Mizee


The scholars of Jarh wa Ta’dil have spoken about these narrators in this chain and said they were all authentic. This isnad is Kufi meaning all the narrators were from Kufa. Also, Sa’eed ibn Abdullah ibn Rabee Khuthaym narrated this back to his grandfather through 2 other men, It’s mentioned that normally Sa’eed ibn Abdillah narrated hadith from his father, however in this case he narrated from Nusayr on Bakr who conveyed his grandfather’s narration of wisdom.


Benefits for this subject:

Rabee ibn Khuthaym ibn ‘Aaith was an Iman and a role model in the area of worship. His kunya was Abu Yazid At-Thowri. He lived during the time of the Prophet [ﷺ)] but never met him, and narrated some reports on him which are considered mursal .

His teachers: Ibn Mas’ud, Abu Ayyub Al-Ansari, Amr ibn Maymoun

His students: Ash-Sha’bee, Hilal ibn Yousaf, Hubair ibn Khuzaymah.

Ar-Rabee was among the wisest men of his era.

Yahya Ibn Ma’een said: A man like Ar-Rabee isnt asked about.

Al-Hamdulilah– is the first praise the Muslims are taught in the Quran in Al-Fatihah. Allah informs us that he deserves praises, so He teaches us to praise him. Al-Hamdulilah means to thank Allah for the blessings he has given us. Although Al-Hamdulilah means thanks it’s more general than offering thanks. You would say thanks to such and such for his knowledge. Everyone who praises one is thankful, but everyone who is thankful doesn’t offer praises[3].

Allahu Akbar- These words mean nothing is greater than Allah. Ibn Taymiyyah said: Saying, Allahu Akbar, means Allah is greater than everything that exists.[4]

The words, “ Allahu Akbar” are a pillar of the prayer and no prayer can begin with saying them inside the prayer, however outside the prayer then a person can say the elative tense to show nothing is like Allah. For example

الله أعْظَمُ

الله أَحْكَمُ

الله أَكْرَمُ

And so forth.[5]

Subhan-Allah- means Allah is far from all imperfections. This word removes all defects and shortcomings from Allah’s names and attributes or attributing something to Him which doesn’t befit His majesty.

Ali ibn Abi Talib was asked about saying Subhan Allah, and he said: “It extols  magnifies Allah’s greatness.”[6]


La ilaha illallah- This word is among the most virtuous words a person can utter and among saying Subhan-Allah, Allahu Akbar, and Al-Hamdulilah then saying, “La ilah illallah” is the best. It carries many meanings among there are;

  • Man and Jinn were created for it
  • Messengers were sent to enforce it
  • Divine books were sent to teach it
  • It separates the believers from the non-believers
  • It’s the rope of Allah
  • It’s what makes the people Jannah happy and the people in Hell miserable
  • It’s the word of Taqwa
  • It’s the greatest pillar of Islam
  • It’s the strongest branch of Iman
  • A person can be saved
  • It’s the Shahadah
  • It’s the key to happiness
  • It’s the pillar of this religion. [7]

Command good and prevent evil- This is the 2nd level of commanding whats right and preventing what’s wrong based on the hadith found in Muslim from Abee Sa’eed Al-Khudri[رضي الله عنه] “Whoever among you witnesses an evil then let him change it with his hands and if he isn’t able to then with his tongue and if he can’t change it with his tongue then let him have it in his heart and this is the weakest of faith. Changing the evil and commanding the good requires a few of things before the person speaks out about it;

  • The person must be certain that the act is incorrect. So if a person wants to prevent Shirk, Bidah and Kufr then he must be certain those acts are either, shirk, bidah or kufr or any other evil deed.


  • The person must be certain that person he’s advising is actually committing wrong acts.


  • The person preventing the evil must be sure that by doing it will no push the person into a greater evil Allah said; “And insult not those whom they (disbelievers) worship besides Allah, lest they insult Allah wrongfully without knowledge.[ Al-anam:108] [refer to Explanation of 40 hadith of imam An-Nawawi by Shaykh Sa’d Ash-Shitri


Ask Allah for good- This command is in the Quran. Allah said:and ask Allah of His Bounty.” [An-Nisa’:32] . We should ask Allah for His bounty and He loves this. All the treasures and bounties of the Heavens and Earth belong to Allah alone and His Hands aren’t tied.[8]

Seek refuge from evil– Ibn Al-Qayyim said: Seeking refuge in Allah and seeking His assistance against the evil of the soul and the plots of your enemy is among the greatest ways to attain happiness[9].


Reading the Quran- The Quran as many scholars consider is the best way to remember Allah. Abu Salamah asked Imam Al-Awza’I if reading the Quran was superior to thikr? He said ask Abu Muhammad (Sa’eed ibn Musayib) and Sa’eed said: “The Quran.” Al-Awza’I said: Nothing compares to the Quran, but the Salaf used to remember Allah after Fajr and after Asr[10].

 Reading the Quran earns a slave rewards he can’t imagine. The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “[Whoever recites a letter] from Allah’s Book, then he receives the reward from it, and the reward of ten the like of it. I do not say that Alif Lam Mim is a letter, but Alif is a letter, Lam is a letter and Mim is a letter.”[11]


It’s narrated that Ibn Abbass said there are 323,671 letters in the Quran, so whoever completes it earns 3 million good deeds.[12]


 “Reading the Quran is the best action for the tongue and reflecting over its meaning is the best action for the heart .”Al-Alamah Ibn Baadees:1358H


Complied  &Prepared by Abu Aaliyah Abdullah ibn Dwight Battle.

Doha, Qatar, 1438©

Academic/Islamic studies teacher



[1] At-Thiqat , # 4461,by Qassim ibn Qutlubugha

[2] Ma’rifatu wa Tarikh #3/87

[3] Tafsir Al-Baghawi

[4] [ Majmou?5/239]

[5] [ refer to Sharu Nur Al-Basa’ir by Shayh Sa’d Ash-Shitri]

[6] [ page 196/ abdur razzaq]

[7] [Fiqhul Ad’iyah vol1/pg 150/Shaykh Abdur Razzaq ibn Badr]

[8] [ maraatu mafatih 2259]

[9] [ Miftah265]

[10] [Tuthakir/Imam Al-Qurtubi, pg 59]

[11] [At-Tirmithi 2910] graded as being Hasan by imam al-albani

[12] [ الإتقان1/231]

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