Praise be to Allah.
This lengthy hadith was narrated by Imam at-Tabaraani in al-Mu‘jam al-Kabeer (3/58), and was quoted from him by Abu Nu‘aym in Hilyat al-Awliya’ (4/74) and via him by Ibn al-Jawzi in al-Mawdoo‘aat (1/295).
He said: Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn al-Bara’ narrated to us: ‘Abd al-Mun‘im ibn Idrees ibn Sinaan narrated to us, from his father, from Wahb ibn Munabbih, from Jaabir ibn ‘Abdullah and ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allah be pleased with them).
Al-Haythami said, after quoting this hadith (8/605):
This was narrated by at-Tabaraani. Its isnaad includes ‘Abd al-Mun‘im ibn Idrees, who was a liar and a fabricator. End quote.
Ibn al-Jawzi said in al-Mawdoo‘aat (1/301):
This is a fabricated hadith that cannot be sound. May Allah punish the one who fabricated it and may He curse those who undermine religion with such nonsense and words which are not befitting for the Messenger (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) or for the Sahaabah.
The one who is accused of fabricating it is ‘Abd al-Mun‘im ibn Idrees. Ahmad ibn Hanbal said: He used to tell lies against Wahb. Yahya said: He is an evil liar. Ibn al-Madeeni and Abu Dawood said: He is not trustworthy. Ibn Hibbaan said: It is not permissible to quote what he narrates as evidence. Ad-Daaraqutni said: He and his father are to be rejected. End quote.
Something similar was stated concerning him by as-Suyooti in al-La’aali in his book on fabricated hadiths entitled al-La’aali al-Masnoo‘ah (1/257), by Ibn ‘Iraaq in Tanzeeh as-Sharee‘ah (1/330) and by ash-Shawkaani in al-Fawaa’id al-Majmoo‘ah (324).
This fabricated hadith contains a number of problematic matters:
It speaks of the story of the death of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) and the Angel of death asking permission to enter upon him, and it mentions unproven details about this major incident. It is well-known to the scholars that the story of the death of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) is one of the topics concerning which the most lies were told by the liars and people transmitted to one another many things concerning it that are not proven.
Al-Haafiz Ibn Katheer (may Allah have mercy on him) said in al-Bidaayah wa’n-Nihaayah (5/256):
Al-Waaqidi and others quoted many reports concerning the Prophet’s death that contain very strange and weird things, but we rejected most of them because of the weakness of their isnaads and the oddness of their texts, especially those that were narrated by many later storytellers and others. Many of them are certainly fabricated, and the saheeh and hasan hadiths that are narrated in the well-known books are sufficient and we have no need for fabricated reports of which the isnaads are not known. And Allah knows best. End quote.
There is no saheeh hadith or report which suggests that the Angel of death sought permission to enter upon the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) to take his soul. All the reports that have been narrated concerning that are either munkar (odd) or mawdoo‘ (fabricated). Please see the answer to question no. 71400.
With regard to the story of ‘Ukaashah seeking retaliation from the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), a similar story was narrated via a saheeh isnaad, but in it, it states that the one who sought retaliation was Usayd ibn Hudayr (may Allah be pleased with him). ‘Abd ar-Rahmaan ibn Abi Layla narrated that Usayd ibn Hudayr said:
Whilst he – i.e., Usayd ibn Hudayr – was talking to the people and joking to make them laugh, the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) poked him in the ribs with a stick. He said: Let me retaliate. He said: Retaliate. He said: You are wearing a shirt but I am not wearing a shirt. The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) lifted his shirt and he embraced him and kissed his side. He said: This is all I wanted, O Messenger of Allah.
Narrated by Abu Dawood (5224) and via him by al-Bayhaqi in as-Sunan al-Kubra (7/102). Also narrated by at-Tabaraani in al-Mu‘jam al-Kabeer (1/205); al-Haakim in al-Mustadrak (3/327) and Ibn ‘Asaakir in Tareekh Dimashq (9/76).
The isnaad of this hadith is saheeh. It was classed as saheeh by al-Haakim and likewise by adh-Dhahabi. It was also classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood.
It says in ‘Awn al-Ma‘bood (14/90):
“the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) poked him in the ribs with a stick” i.e., he struck him by way of joking and playing. “He” i.e., Usayd “said: Let me retaliate” i.e., allow me to poke you in the ribs as you poked me in the ribs. “Retaliate”i.e., take your revenge.
“and kissed his side” – the Arabic word translated as “side” refers to the area on the side of the body between the lowest rib and the hip.
“He said: This is all I wanted” that is, all I wanted by saying let me retaliate was to kiss you, and I did not really want to retaliate. End quote.
The hadith also contains a number of reprehensible and odd things, such as the following:
“The first one who will offer the funeral prayer for me is the Lord, may He be glorified and exalted, from above His Throne” – does Allah offer the funeral prayer for anyone?! This is a reprehensible lie of the fabricators.
“When the soul reached the knees, the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: ‘Ouch!’ When the soul reached the navel, the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) cried out: ‘How stressful it is!’ When the soul reached the chest, the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) cried out: ‘O Jibreel! How difficult are the throes of death!’”
The problem here is that this gives the impression that the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) was displeased and panicked at the time of death, but he is far above such a thing.
“We said takbeer following the takbeer of Jibreel (peace be upon him), and we offered the funeral prayer for the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), led by Jibreel (peace be upon him) in prayer”
it is not known that the angels ever led the Muslims in prayer; rather this is one of the odd things that were narrated by the suspect narrators.
And Allah knows best.