Hadeeth: “Verily, Allaah sends for this Ummah at the head of every hundred years the one who renews for it its religion”

Question: I heard a Hadeeth in which the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) stated: “Verily, Allaah sends for this Ummah (nation) at the head of every hundred years the one who reforms for it the matters of its religion.” I have some inquires regarding this Hadeeth.

A- What are the Sanad (chain of narrators) and the correct Matn (text) of this Hadeeth? Who among the Companions narrated it?
B- What are the characteristics of the meant reformers, if it is possible?
C- What is the meaning of (reforming the matters of religion) when the Prophet (peace be upon him) left us on absolute clear guidance?
D- How can we know these reformers?
E- Is it true that these reformers are raised at the end of the twelfth year of every Hijree (lunar) century?

Answer: First: The above Hadeeth is narrated by Aboo Daawood in his Sunan on the authority of Sulaymaan ibn Daawood Al-Mahree who said: `Abd Allaah ibn Wahb informed me on the authority of Sa`eed ibn Ayyoob from Sharaaheel ibn Yazeed Al-Mu‘aafiree from Aboo ‘Alqamah from Aboo Hurayrah that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said… read more here.

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