How much do we really know about Masjid Aqsa?
Whilst many of us are eager and passionate to visit the holy and blessed cities of Makkah and Madinah, do we ever pause to think about visiting Masjid Aqsa?
In one prophetic tradition, the Prophet PBUH spoke about the three holiest mosques in the world and alongside Masjid Haram and Masjid Nabawi, he mentioned Masjid Aqsa.
This alone tells us the huge significance placed on Masjid Aqsa and its surrounding areas. What’s more, Allah has only mentioned two mosques explicitly by their names; Masjid Haram and Masjid Aqsa.
One of the best ways to reconnect with anything in Islam is to return to the Quran and Hadith. When it comes to Masjid Aqsa and its significance, the Prophet ﷺ has left behind a range of prophetic traditions. In this article, we list five of the most profound ahadith about Masjid Aqsa.
Visiting Masjid Aqsa
لاَ تُشَدُّ الرِّحَالُ إِلاَّ إِلَى ثَلاَثَةِ مَسَاجِدَ مَسْجِدِي هَذَا وَمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ وَمَسْجِدِ الأَقْصَ
The Prophet ﷺ mentioned, “Do not undertake a journey to visit any Mosque, but three: this Mosque of mine, the Mosque of al-Haram and the Mosque of Aqsa (Bait al-Maqdis).” [Sahih Muslim]
Significance of Praying in Masjid Aqsa
صَلاَةُ الرَّجُلِ فِي بَيْتِهِ بِصَلاَةٍ وَصَلاَتُهُ فِي مَسْجِدِ الْقَبَائِلِ بِخَمْسٍ وَعِشْرِينَ صَلاَةً وَصَلاَتُهُ فِي الْمَسْجِدِ الَّذِي يُجَمَّعُ فِيهِ بِخَمْسِمِائَةِ صَلاَةٍ وَصَلاَةٌ فِي الْمَسْجِدِ الأَقْصَى بِخَمْسِينَ أَلْفِ صَلاَةٍ وَصَلاَةٌ فِي مَسْجِدِي بِخَمْسِينَ أَلْفِ صَلاَةٍ وَصَلاَةٌ فِي الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ بِمِائَةِ أَلْفِ صَلاَةٍ
The Prophet ﷺ mentioned, “A man’s prayer in his house is equal (in reward) to one prayer; his prayer in the mosque of the tribes is equal to twenty-five prayers; his prayer in the mosque in which Friday prayer is offered is equal to five-hundred prayers; his prayer in Aqsa Mosque is equal to fifty thousand prayers; his prayer in my mosque is equal to fifty thousand prayers; and his prayer in the Sacred Mosque is equal to one hundred thousand prayers.” [Sunan Ibn Majah]
Masjid Aqsa is The Second House of Allah on Earth
يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ، أَىُّ مَسْجِدٍ وُضِعَ فِي الأَرْضِ أَوَّلُ قَالَ ” الْمَسْجِدُ الْحَرَامُ “. قَالَ قُلْتُ ثُمَّ أَىٌّ قَالَ ” الْمَسْجِدُ الأَقْصَى “. قُلْتُ كَمْ كَانَ بَيْنَهُمَا قَالَ ” أَرْبَعُونَ سَنَةً، ثُمَّ أَيْنَمَا أَدْرَكَتْكَ الصَّلاَةُ بَعْدُ فَصَلِّهْ، فَإِنَّ الْفَضْلَ فِيهِ
Abu Dhar RA narrated: I said, “O Allah’s Messenger ﷺ! Which mosque was first built on the surface of the earth?” He said, “Al- Masjid-ul-,Haram (in Makkah).” I said, “Which was built next?” He replied “The mosque of Al-Aqsa ( in Jerusalem).” I said, “What was the period of construction between the two?” He said, “Forty years.” He added, “Wherever (you may be, and) the prayer time becomes due, perform the prayer there, for the best thing is to do so (i.e. to offer the prayers in time).
Donating to Masjid Aqsa
عَنْ مَيْمُونَةَ، مَوْلاَةِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم أَنَّهَا قَالَتْ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ أَفْتِنَا فِي بَيْتِ الْمَقْدِسِ فَقَالَ ” ائْتُوهُ فَصَلُّوا فِيهِ ” . – وَكَانَتِ الْبِلاَدُ إِذْ ذَاكَ حَرْبًا – فَإِنْ لَمْ تَأْتُوهُ وَتُصَلُّوا فِيهِ فَابْعَثُوا بِزَيْتٍ يُسْرَجُ فِي قَنَادِيلِهِ
Maymunah RA narrated: I said, Messenger of Allah, tell us the legal injunction about (visiting) Bayt al-Muqaddas (the dome of the Rock at Jerusalem). The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said: go and pray there. All the cities at that time were affected by war. If you cannot visit it and pray there, then send some oil to be used in the lamps.
If you would like to donate towards the lighting of Masjid Aqsa, click here.
Masjid Aqsa – The First Qiblah
عَنِ الْبَرَاءِ، قَالَ صَلَّيْنَا مَعَ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم نَحْوَ بَيْتِ الْمَقْدِسِ سِتَّةَ عَشَرَ شَهْرًا أَوْ سَبْعَةَ عَشَرَ شَهْرًا – شَكَّ سُفْيَانُ – وَصُرِفَ إِلَى الْقِبْلَةِ
Al Bara’ RA said, “We prayed toward Bait Al-Maqdis (Jerusalem) with the Messenger of Allah ﷺ for sixteen or seventeen months – Safwan was not sure – then it was changed to the Qiblah.”
Juber Ahmed is our Digital Editor and travel enthusiast with a keen interest in Islamic history and heritage. He travels with his wife to various places around the world and writes about his experiences.
Juber's favourite Quote...
"The World Is a Book and Those Who Do Not Travel Read Only One Page" [Saint Augustine]