112098: What should we say when the muezzin says al-salaatu khayrun min al-nawm (prayer is better than sleep)?


How should the muezzin be answered when he says al-salaatu khayrun min al-nawm (prayer is better than sleep)?.

Praise be to Allaah.

He should be answered with something like what he says. So one should say “al-salaatu khayrun min al-nawm”, because when the muezzin says “Allaahu akbar (Allaah is most great)”, one should say “Allaahu akbar”, and when he says “Ashhadu an laa ilaaha ill-Allaah (I bear witness that there is no god but Allaah)”, one should say “Ashhadu an laa ilaaha ill-Allaah”. And when he says “Ashhadu anna Muhammadan rasool Allaah (I bear witness that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah),” one should say, “Ashhadu anna Muhammadan rasool Allaah.” Then after saying the Shahaadatayn, one should say: “Radaytu Billaahi rabban wa bi’l-Islaami deenan wa bi Muhammad Rasoolan (I am content with Allaah as my Lord, and with Islam as my religion, and with Muhammad as my Prophet).” When he says “Hayya ‘ala al-salaah (come to prayer), one should say “Laa hawla wa laa quwwata illa Billaah (There is no power and no strength except with Allaah),” and the same when he says “Hayya ‘ala al-falaah (come to prosperity).” When he says “Allaahu akbar”, one should say “Allaahu akbar,” and when he says “Laa ilaaha ill-Allaah” one should say “Laa ilaaha ill-Allaah.” And when he says “Al-salaatu khayrun min al-nawm”, one should say “al-salaatu khayrun min al-nawm.” 

It was said that he should say “Sadaqta wa barirta (You have spoken the truth); and it was said that he should say “Laa hawla wa laa quwwata illa Billaah.” But the correct view is the first one. The evidence for that is the words of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him): ‘When you hear the muezzin, say what the muezzin says.” There is no exception to this in the Sunnah except in the case of the words “Hayya ‘ala al-salaah, hayya ‘ala al-falaah,” when it should be said, “Laa hawla wa laa quwwata illa Billaah.” The general meaning of the hadeeth remains applicable to everything except these two phrases. 

If someone were to ask: Isn’t saying “prayer is better than sleep” true? The answer is, yes indeed, and saying Allaah akbar is true, and saying Laa ilaaha ill-Allaah is true, so when he says Allaah akbar, should you say Sadaqta wa barirta? You should not say that, so when he says “al-salaatu khayrun min al-nawm,” say what he says. This is the general meaning of the command of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him). End quote. 

Majmoo’ Fataawa al-Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (12/195).
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