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The Life and works of Imam Jabir bin Zayd

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Tawtheeq (Reliability)

Jabir's wide knowledge of the interpretation of the Qur'an and the Sunnah made him an outstanding figure in this field of knowledge, and he is described by the   Traditionalists as reliable (thiqah). The only exception to this was al-'Asili, who regarded him as weak (dha'if) Traditionalist, but his view was rejected by Ibn Hajar al-'Asqalani. Apart from his regular students who studied Traditions and Futya with him, people used to come to him seeking his legal opinions on religious matters. Some of these opinions were written in the form of questions sent to him by friends outside Basrah. He is described as the most learned man in the field of Fatawa. Many of his students used to put down his legal opinions in writing, but Jabir was not in favour of recording his opinions in this way; On hearing of his students writing them down, Jabir  commented, "To God we belong (Inna lilah). They are writing down the opinions which I may change tomorrow! Yet not-withstanding, most of his opinions and narrations (riwayat) were recorded by his students.

Based on the reliability which Imam Jabir obtained from the Companions of the Messenger of God (PBUH), as well as the Successors, he was considered by the Scholars of Al-Jarh wa Al-Taadeel (invalidation and validation) as one of the most eminent jurists of the 1st Century AH. Al-Ajli declared him thiqah (reliable) and Ibn Hibban said: 'He was one of the Successor Scholars, knowledgeable of the Qur'an and one of the religious jurists of people of Basrah. And no one has disparaged his Adaalah (integrity).

The position of Jabir in Ijma (scholarly consensus) is prestigious. Imam Ibn Hazm mentioned in his book al-Muhalla that he deplores every Ijma that is opposed by Ali bin Abi Talib, Abdullah bin Masoud, Anas bin Malik, Ibn Abbas, and the Companion in Sham, and then the Successor in Sham, Ibn Sirin and Jabir bin Zaid.

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