A point-by-point analysis by Shaykh Muḥammad Ibn Jamīl Zaynū listing the most apparent and praiseworthy characteristics of the Saved Sect and Victorious Group. This brief excerpt from his book Minhāj al-Firqah al-Nājiyah has many beneficial signposts for the real seeker of the truth with regards to Islām and the Sunnah.
And if only the people of blameworthy opinion busied themselves with beneficial knowledge, and seeking the Sunnah of the Messenger of the Lord of Creation, and followed the way of the fuqahāʾ and muḥaddithūn – then they would find that this would be sufficient for them
 Allāh – the Most High – said,
“And hold fast altogether to the Rope of Allāh and do not become divided.”2
 Allāh – the Most High – said,
“And do not be of those who commit Shirk (associate partners with Allāh), those who split-up their Religion and become sects; each sect rejoicing in what is with them.”3
 The Prophet ﷺ said, “I advise you to have taqwá of Allāh and to hear and to obey, even if an Abyssinian slave becomes your leader. Those of you who live long after me will see a lot of differences, so hold fast to my Sunnah and to the Sunnah of the Rightly-Guided Caliphs after me. Cling to it tightly and beware of newly-invented matters, for every newly invented matter is an innovation, and every innovation is misguidance, and all misguidance is in the Fire.”4
 He ﷺ also said, “Indeed, the people of the Book before you split up into seventy-two sects. And this nation will split up into seventy-three sects, seventy-two are in the Fire and one is in Paradise.”5 And in another narration, “All of them are in the Fire except one.” It was asked, ‘Who is that one?’ He replied, “That which I and my Companions are upon.”6
 Ibn Masʿūd – raḍī Allāhu ʿanhu – said,7 Allāh’s Messenger ﷺ drew a line for us and then said, “This is Allāh’s Path.” Then he drew lines to its right and its left, and said, “These are differing paths, upon each of them there is a Shayṭān (devil) calling to it.” Then he recited, “And verily this is My Path, so follow it, and do not follow other paths for they will separate you away from His Path.”8
 Shaykh ʿAbd al Qādir al-Jeelānee (d.561H) said, “As for al-Firqatun-Naajiyah (the Saved-Sect) it is Ahl al-Sunnah wal-Jamāʿah, and there is no name for Ahl al-Sunnah except one – and that is Aṣḥāb al-Ḥadīth (the People of Ḥadīth).”9
 Allāh – the One free from all defects, the Most High – orders us to hold fast altogether to the Noble Qurʾān; and not to be of the mushriks (those who associate partners with Allāh in that which is particular to Him) who split-up their Religion and become shee’an (sects) and ḥizbs (parties). And the Prophet ﷺ informed us that the Jews and the Christians will be divided into many sects and that the Muslims will split-up even more. And that these sects will be fitting for entry into the Fire, due to their deviations and their being far from the Book of their Lord and the Sunnah of their Messenger. And that only one sect will be saved from the Fire and enter Paradise – and that is the Jamāʿah; those who cling to the Book and the authentic Sunnah and to the actions of the Companions of the Prophet ﷺ. O Allāh! Make us from amongst the Saved-Sect; and grant the Muslims the guidance and ability to be from it.
Methodology of the Saved Sect
 al-Firqatun-Naajiyah (the Saved-Sect) is that which adheres to the manhaj (methodology) of Allāh’s Messenger ﷺ during his lifetime, and to the minhaaj of his Companions after him: and that is the Noble Qurʾān which Allāh revealed to His Messenger, and which he explained to his Companions in the authentic Sunnah – ordering the Muslims to cling to these two, saying, “I am leaving amongst you two things, you will never go astray as long as you cling to them: the Book of Allāh and my Sunnah. They will not separate from each other, until you meet me at the Lake.”10
 The Saved-Sect returns to the Word of Allāh and His Messenger ﷺ whenever there is disagreement or difference of opinion; acting upon the saying of Allāh – the Most High, “If you differ in anything amongst yourselves, refer it to Allāh and His Messenger, if you do believe in Allāh and the Last Day. That is best and most suitable for final determination.” 11 And He – the Most High – said, “But no, by your Lord! They cannot have any faith until they make you (the Messenger) a judge in all disputes that they have between them, and find in themselves no resistance against your decision, but accept them with full submission.”12
 The Saved-Sect does not give precedence to the word of anyone over the Word of Allāh and His Messenger ﷺ, acting upon His – the Most High – saying,
“O you who believe! Do not put yourselves forward before Allāh and His Messenger, and have taqwá of Allāh. Indeed, Allāh is all-Hearing, all-Seeing.”13
Ibn ʿAbbās – raḍī Allāhu ʿanhu – said, “I fear that stones will descend upon you from the sky, that I say to you that the Messenger of Allāh said; and you say to me that Abū Bakr and ʿUmar say something else!”14
 The Saved-Sect values Tawḥīd: and it is to single-out Allāh alone in worship, in supplication, in seeking aid and assistance, in seeking refuge in times of ease and hardship, in sacrificing and vow-making, in placing total reliance and trust in Him and in judging by what Allāh has revealed; and all other forms of worship. These are the foundations upon which the true Islamic governance is based. It is therefore essential to remove Shirk (associating partners with Allāh in those matters that are particular to Him) and its manifestations – which is present in all the Muslim lands – since this is a requirement of Tawḥīd. And victory is not possible when Tawḥīd is neglected, nor can Shirk be fought with its like. We must – in this – follow the examples of the Prophets and in particular, the example of our noble Prophet – may the Peace of Allāh and His Prayers be upon them all.
 The Saved-Sect revive the Sunnah of Allāh’s Messenger ﷺ in their ’ʿibādah (worship), sulook (behaviour) and in their lives, thus becoming strangers amongst the people – as Allāh’s Messenger ﷺ mentioned in his saying, “Islām started as something strange and will return as something strange as it began, so Toobaa (a tree in Paradise) is for the Strangers.”15 In another narration, “ … so Toobaa is for the Strangers. Those who correct and put right what the people have corrupted.”16
 The Saved-Sect does not have ta’assub (bigoted adherence) to the sayings of anyone, except the saying of Allāh and the saying of His infallible Messenger ﷺ, who does not speak from his own desires. As for every other person – however elevated his rank – then he errs and makes mistakes, according to his ﷺ saying, “All the children of Ādam err and commit mistakes, and the best of those who make mistakes are those who turn in repentance.”17
Imām Mālik (d. 179H) – raḥimahullāh – said, “There is no one after the Prophet ﷺ, except that you can take his saying or leave it, with the exception of the Prophet ﷺ18″
 The Saved-Sect are Ahlul-Ḥadīth (the People of Ḥadīth), about whom the Prophet ﷺ said, “There will not cease to be a group from my Ummah victorious and uppermost upon the truth, those who abandon them will not harm them, until the command of Allāh comes about.”19
A poet said,
“Ahlul-Ḥadīth are the people of the Prophet, although;
They accompany him not, they are with his every movement.”20
 The Saved-Sect love and honour the mujtahid Imāms (those Scholars who are able to extract rulings from the Book and the Sunnah). However, they do not have ta’assub (bigoted blind adherence) to any particular one of them. On the contrary, they take fiqh (rulings) from the Qurʾān and the authentic aḥādīth, upon the understanding, and the sayings, of all of the Scholars – if it is in agreement with the authentic aḥādīth. Indeed, this agrees with their saying, that you should take it if it agrees with the authentic ḥadīth and leave whatever disagrees with it.
[Imām Abū Ḥanīfah (d.150H) – raḥimahullāh – said, “If a ḥadīth is found to be authentic, then that is my madh′hab.”21]
Imām Mālik (d.179H) – raḥimahullāh – said, “Indeed I am only a man. I am sometimes mistaken and at other times correct; so look into my opinions. All that agrees with the Book and the Sunnah, accept it; and all that does not agree with the Book and the Sunnah, then abandon it.”22
Imām al-Shāfiʿī (d.204H) – raḥimahullāh – said, “Everything that I say, for which there is something authentically related from the Prophet (ṣallallāhu ʿalayhi wa-sallam) contrary to my saying, then the ḥadīth of the Prophet comes first. So do not make taqlīd (blind-following) of me.”23
Imām Aḥmad (d.241H) – raḥimahullāh – said, “Do not make taqlīd (blind-following) of me, nor make taqlīd of Mālik, nor of al-Shāfiʿī, nor of al-Awzāʿī, nor of al-Thawrī. But take from where they took.”24
 The Saved-Sect orders the good and forbids the evil. Thus it renounces the innovated ways and destructive parties and groups which split the Ummah: those that innovate in the Religion and innovate with regards the Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ and that of his Companions.
 The Saved-Sect calls the Muslims to cling to the Qurʾān and to the Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ and to the way of his Companions, until victory is decreed for them; and until they enter Paradise by the Grace of Allāh and the shifaa’ah (intercession) of His Messenger ﷺ.
 The Saved-Sect reject those laws which are man-made when they contraḍīct the judgement of Islām. Rather, it calls to the judgement by the Book of Allāh, which Allāh revealed for the happiness and benefit of mankind, both in this world and in the Hereafter, and Allāh – the Most Perfect, the Most High – knows what it is that will correct and reform them. So His Law is firm and constant, it will not alter for the rest of time, nor does the passage of time alter its values. Indeed, the reason for the misfortunes of this world in general, and the Islamic world in particular – which is experiencing misfortune, lowliness and humiliation – is: abandoning judging by the Book of Allāh and the Sunnah of His Messenger ﷺ. And nothing will make the Muslims strong again except by them returning to the teachings of Islām – individually, collectively and in their governance – acting upon the saying of Allāh, the Most High,
“Indeed, never will Allāh change the condition of a people until they change themselves.”25
 The Saved-Sect call the Muslims collectively to Jihād in the path of Allāh – which is obligatory upon every Muslim in accordance with his ability and strength. And Jihād comprises the following:-
[i] Jihād with the Tongue and the Pen: to call the Muslims and others to the adherence of the true and correct Islām and adherence to Tawḥīd free from the Shirk which has spread in the Islamic lands; and which Allāh’s Messenger ﷺ informed us would appear amongst the Muslims, saying, “The Hour will not be established until a group from my Ummah will follow the mushriks, and large groups 26 of my Ummah will worship idols.”25
[ii] Jihād with Wealth: and it is to give wealth for the propagation of Islām and for printing daʿwah books based upon the correct approach. It also consists of the distribution of funds to the weak Muslims to incline their hearts and to strengthen them. It also consists of the manufacture and purchase of weapons and equipping the mujaahidīn – providing them with food, clothing and other requirements.
[iii] Jihād with Oneself: it consists of fighting and participating in battle for the victory of Islām, such that the Word of Allāh is made uppermost, whilst the word of kufr (disbelief) is debased and made low.
And the noble Messenger ﷺ pointed to these three types of Jihād in his saying: “Make Jihād against the mushrikeen with your wealth, yourselves and your tongues.”28
And the ruling concerning Jihād in the path of Allāh is according to the following cases:-
Fard ’Ayn (individual obligation): When the enemy aggressors take over any part of the Muslim lands – such as Palestine. So it is an obligation upon the Muslims – whether with their wealth or their selves – to drive out the Jews from Palestine and return Masjidul-Aqsaa to the Muslims – the Muslims being sinful until they do so [Note: It is important to understand that this ruling is bound the the rulers and scholars of the Muslim nations and requires great understanding and explanation from the scholars of Islām, it is not as some of the deviated sects have applied in turning towards terrorism and acts of evil].
Fard Kifāyah (collective obligation): If some Muslims carry it out, then it is no longer obligatory upon the rest of them.
The Signs of the Saved-Sect
 al-Firqatun-Naajiyah (the Saved-Sect) are few amongst the people. Allāh’s Messenger ﷺ prayed for them in the following words: “Toobaa (a tree in Paradise) is for the Strangers – the people who are righteous amongst a people who are mostly wicked, those that disobey them are more than those who obey them.”29 And the noble Qurʾān inform about them. So it says in praise of them,
“But few of My Servants are grateful.”30
 The Saved-Sect are abandoned by most people, who slander them and ridicule them with insulting names. So there is for them an example in the Prophets – ʿalayhimus-salām – about whom Allāh said,
“And so We appointed for every Prophet an enemy; devils amongst mankind and jinn, inspiring one another with flowery discourses by way of deception.”31
And Allāh’s Messenger ﷺ was treated in this way by his people. So when he called them to Tawḥīd they called him a sorcerer and a liar – whereas prior to this they used to call him as-Saadiq (truthful) and al-Amīn (trustworthy).
 Shaykh ʿAbd al-ʿAzīz Ibn Bāz – hafiẓahullāh – was asked about al-Firqatun-Naajiyah (the Saved-Sect), so he said, “They are the Salafīs 32 and all who adhere to the path of the Salaf al-Ṣāliḥ (the Pious Predecessors).”
The Aided and Victorious Group
 The Prophet ﷺ said, “There will not cease to be a group from my Ummah victorious upon the truth, not being harmed by those who oppose them until the command of Allāh comes about, and they are like that.”33
 He ﷺ said, “When the people of Shaam (Syria, Jordan, Palestine) become corrupt then there will be no good in you. And there will not cease to be a group from my Ummah being helped; those that oppose them will not harm them, until the hour is established.”34
 Ibn al-Mubārak (d.151H) – raḥimahullāh – said, “According to me, they are Aṣḥāb al-Ḥadīth (the Scholars of Ḥadīth).”35
 Imām al-Bukhārī (d.256H) – raḥimahullāh – said, “It means: Ahlul-Ḥadīth (the People of Ḥadīth).”36
 Imām Aḥmad (d.241H) – raḥimahullāh – said, “If this Taa‘ifatul-Mansūrah (Victorious and Aided Group) is not Aṣḥāb al-Ḥadīth, then I do not know who they are.”37
[al-Qaadee ’Iyāḍ (d.544H) – raḥimahullāh – said, “What Aḥmad intended was Ahl al-Sunnah wal-Jamāʿah: those who hold the ʿaqīdah of Ahlul-Ḥadīth.”38
 Indeed, Ahlul-Ḥadīth, by virtue of their competence in the study of the Sunnah, are not attached to any person, but are altogether concerned with the Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ; his guidance, his manners, his battles, and whatever else pertains to him.
 Imām al-Shāfiʿī said, whilst addressing Imām Aḥmad, “You are more knowledgeable about Ḥadīth than I am. So if there comes to you a Ḥadīth that is authentic, then make me aware of it, until I accept it and accord with it – it is from Baṣrah.”39
So Ahlul-Ḥadīth – may Allāh make us amongst them – do not have ta’assub (bigoted blind adherence) for the saying of any particular person, however, elevated, or whatever position he holds. Rather, they cling to the Prophet ﷺ, as opposed to those who do not ascribe themselves to Ahlul-Ḥadīth; those who have ta’assub to their Imāms – who have actually prohibited them from this – just as Ahlul-Ḥadīth readily cling to the sayings of their Prophet ﷺ. So it is not surprising that Ahlul-Ḥadīth are al-Firqatun-Naajiyah (the Saved-Sect ) and at-Taa‘ifatul-Mansūrah (the Aided and Victorious Group).
 al-Khaṭīb al-Baghdādī (d.463H) said, “And if only the people of blameworthy opinion busied themselves with beneficial knowledge, and seeking the Sunnah of the Messenger of the Lord of Creation, and followed the way of the fuqahaa‘ and muhaddithoon – then they would find that this would be sufficient for them. And the narration would take the place of his opinion which he used to hold; since the Ḥadīth comprehends the fundamentals of Tawḥīd, the reported Threats and the Promises, the Attributes of the Lord of Creation – who is High above the saying of the apostates, it also contains information about Paradise and Hell-Fire, and what Allāh has prepared therein for the pious and the wicked, and what Allāh has created in the earths and the heavens, and the remarkable things and great signs, and a mention of the nearest Angels – those drawn up in ranks and those who recite tasbeeh.
And the Ḥadīth comprehends stories of the about the pious ascetics and Awliyaa‘, wonderful admonition and sayings of the Scholars. It contains histories of the kings of the ’Arabs and non-’Arabs, and the accounts of past nations, and descriptions of the battles of the Messenger ﷺ; his expeditions, rulings, judgements, sermons, warnings, predictions and miracles. It also contains information about the number of his Wives and Children, his Relatives and Companions, and a mention of their excellence and merit, and a mention of their lives, their actions and their ancestry. And the Ḥadīth contains tafsīr of the Qurʾān, information and the wise remembrance contained in it. It contains the sayings of the Companions about its preserved rulings, the different sayings they held, as well as those of the Scholars and mujtahidīn.
And Allāh made Ahlul-Ḥadīth (the People of Ḥadīth) the pillar of the Sharīʿah and the destroyer of every despicable innovation. So they are Allāh’s wardens amongst His creation, and the link between the Prophet ﷺ and his Ummah, and the strivers to preserve His Religion. So their light shines brightly, their excellence remains, their signs are clear, their positions evident and their proofs are over-powering. And all the sects coil themselves around vain desires and prefer opinion which they cling to – except for Ahlul-Ḥadīth, since the Book is their provision, the Sunnah is their proof, the Messenger their leader and to him is their ascription. They do not deviate upon vain desires, nor turn to mere conjecture. They accept what is reported from the Prophet ﷺ and they are the trustworthy and reliable ones, who memorise the Religion and are its treasurers, its storehouses of knowledge and its bearers. If anyone differs about a ḥadīth, then it is referred back to them. Thus, their judgement is accepted and listened to. From them is every Scholar and Imām, and every true ascetic, and one of excellence, and precise reciter and righteous Khateeb. They are the Saved-Sect and their way is the straight one…” 40
May Allāh make us from amongst Ahlul-Ḥadīth, and provide us with the ability to act upon it, love its people and to act in accordance with it.
 Minḥājul-Firqatun-Naajiyah wat-Taa‘ifat al-Mansūrah (p. 6-17) – slightly adapted. Four additional narrations have been added to the main text, by the editors, and are indicated by […].  Sūrah-ʿImrān [3:103]  Sūrah al-Rūm, [30:31-32]  Ṣaḥīḥ: Related by Abū Dāwūd (no. 4607), al-Tirmidhī (no. 2676) and it was authenticated by al-Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Hajr in Takhreej Aḥādīth Mukhtasar Ibn al-Haajib (1/137). The addition: “…and every misguidance is in the Fire.” was narrated by al-Bayḥaqī (10/114) and others. It was authenticated by Ibn Taymīyyah in Iqtidaa‘us-Seeraatul-Mustaqeem (1/111).  Ḥasan: Related by Abū Dāwūd (no. 4597) and Aḥmad (4/102) and it was authenticated by al-Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Hajr in Takhreej Aḥādīthul-Kashaaf (no. 63).  Ḥasan: Related by al-Tirmidhī (5/62) and al-Ḥākim (1/128) and others. It was authenticated by al-Ḥāfiẓ al-’ʿIrāqee in Takhreejul-Iḥyā‘ (3/199) and al-Albānī in al-Ṣaḥihah (no. 204).  Ṣaḥīḥ: Related by Aḥmad (1/435) and also al-Ḥākim (2/318) who authenticated it and al-Dhahabī agreed.  Sūrah-Anʿām [6:153]  al-Ghuniyatut-Ṭālibeen (p. 212).  Ṣaḥīḥ: Related by al-Ḥākim from Abū Hurayrah (raḍī Allāhu ʿanhu). It was authenticated by al-Albānī in Takhreejul-Mishkaat (no. 186).  Sūrah Sūrah al-Nisāʾ [4:59]  Sūrah Sūrah al-Nisāʾ [4:65]  Sūrah al-Ḥujurāt [49:l]  Related by Aḥmad (no. 3121), al-Khaṭīb in al-Faqīḥ wal-Mutafaqqih (1/145) and Ibn ʿAbd al-Barr in Jāmiʿ Bayānul-’Ilm (2/196), from Saʿīd Ibn Jubayr. The isnād is Ḥasan.  Related by Muslim (2/175-176) and Ibn Mājah (2/320) from Abū Hurayrah (raḍī Allāhu ʿanhu).  Ṣaḥīḥ: Related by Abū ’Amrad-Daanee in as-Sunanul-Waaridah fil-Fitan (1/25) and al-Ājurrī in al-Ghurabaa‘ (p. l5-16), from Ibn Masʿūd (raḍī Allāhu ʿanhu). Shaykh al-Albānī authenticated it in al-Ṣaḥihah (3/267).  Ḥasan: Related by al-Tirmidhī (no. 2399), Ibn Mājah (no. 4251) and others, from Anas (raḍī Allāhu ʿanhu). It was authenticated by al-Albānī in Ṣaḥīḥ Sunan Ibn Mājah (no. 3428).  Related by Ibn ʿAbd al-Hādī in Irshādus-Saalik (227/l) who declared it Ṣaḥīḥ. Delighted with the beauty of this saying, Taqiyy al-Dīn as-Subkee said in al-Fatāwá (1/148), “These words were originally those of Ibn ʿAbbās and Mujāhid, from whom Mālik took them and became famous for them.” Imām Aḥmad also took this saying from them, as Abū Dāwūd relates in his Masaa‘il Imām Aḥmad (p. 276), “I heard Aḥmad say: There is no one, except that his opinion is taken or is abandoned, except the Prophet ﷺ.”  Related by Muslim (6/52-53) and Abū Dāwūd (2/202) from Thawbaan (raḍī Allāhu ʿanhu).  From the poetry of Ḥasan Ibn Muḥammad an-Nasawee, as is quoted by al-Ḥāfiẓ Diyaa‘ud-Dīn al-Maqdisee in his booklet Fadlul-Ḥadīth wa Ahlihi.  Related by Ibn ’Aabidīn in al-Haashiyah (1/63) and also in Rasmul-Muftī (1/4).  Related by Ibn ʿAbd al-Barr in al-Jāmiʿ (2/32) and Ibn Hazm in Uṣūl al-Aḥkām (6/149)  Related by Ibn Abī Ḥātim in al-Aadaab (p. 93) and Ibn ’ʿAsākir in Taareekh Dimashq (15/9/2).  Related by Ibn al-Qayyim in I’lāmul-Muwaqqi’een (2/302).  Sooratur-Ra’d [13:11]  al-ʿArabīc: fi’aam. In an-Nihāyah (3/406), Ibn al-Atheer (d.606H) explained fi’aam to mean: many groups.  Ṣaḥīḥ: Part of a ḥadīth which was related by Abū Dāwūd (no. 4252), Ibn Mājah (no. 4000) and al-Ḥākim (4/448-449) who declared it Ṣaḥīḥ and al-Dhahabī agreed. Refer to Tahdheerus-Saajid (p. 139) of Shaykh al-Albānī. The ḥadīth was reported by Thawbaan (raḍī Allāhu ʿanhu).  Ṣaḥīḥ: Related by Abū Dāwūd (no. 2504) from Anas (raḍī Allāhu ʿanhu). It was authenticated by al-Albānī in Ṣaḥīḥ Jāmiʿus-Sagheer (no. 3090).  Ṣaḥīḥ: Related by Aḥmad (1/177), Ibn al-Mubārak in al-Zuhd (p. 266) and others, from ʿAbdullāh Ibn ’Amr (raḍī Allāhu ʿanhumā.) Shaykh Saleem al-Hilālee authenticated it in al-Ghurbah wal Ghurabaa‘ (p. 16).  Sūrah-Saba‘ [34:13]  Sūrah-Anʿām [6:112]  as-Samʿānee (d.562H) said in al-Insaab (3/273), “al-Salafī: this is an ascription to the Salaf and following their ways, in that which is related from them.” Ibn al-Atheer (d.630H) said in al-Lubaab fī Tahdheebil-Insaab (2/162), commenting upon the previous saying of as-Samʿānee, “And a group were known by this ascription.” So the meaning is: that the term Salafī, and its ascription to them was a matter known in the time of as-Samʿānee, or before him. Likewise, in al-Qaamoosul-Muheet (no. 1060), al-Fayroozabaadee (d.817H) said – after mentioning a few Scholars who called themselves Salafī -: “They ascribe themselves to the Salaf.”
 Related by Muslim (6/52-53) and Abū Dāwūd (2/202) from Thawbaan (raḍī Allāhu ʿanhu).  Ṣaḥīḥ: Related by al-Tirmidhī (2/30) who said, “The ḥadīth is Ḥasan Ṣaḥīḥ.” It was also related by Ibn Mājah (1/6-7) and Aḥmad (3/463), from Qurrah al-Muzanī (raḍī Allāhu ʿanhu).  Sharaf Aṣḥāb al-Ḥadīth (p. 26) of al-Khaṭīb al-Baghdādī  Sharaf Aṣḥāb al-Ḥadīth (p. 27)  Related by al-Ḥākim in Ma’rifatu ’Ulūm al-Ḥadīth (p. 3), and al-Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Hajr declared its isnād to be Ṣaḥīḥ in Fat′h al-Bārī (13/293).  Sharḥ Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim (13/67) of al-Nawawī  Related by Ibn Abī Ḥātim in Ādāb-Shaafi’ee (p. 94-95), Abū Nuʿaym in Hilyatul-Awliyaa‘ (9/106) and al-Khaṭīb in Ihtijaaj bish-Shaafi’ee (8/1). It was declared to be Ṣaḥīḥ by Ibn al-Qayyim in al-I’lām (2/325).  Sharaf Aṣḥāb al-Ḥadīth (p. 7-9).