Dr. Taha Jabir Al-`Alwani, president of the Graduate School of Islamic and Social Sciences and president of the Fiqh Council of North America, states the following: “I think we should not wait for somebody to give us hidayah (guidance). Allah has given us all the hidayah that we need in the Qur’an. He, Glory be to Him, says: “Lo! this Qur’an guideth unto that which is straightest, and giveth tidings unto the believers who do good works that theirs will be a great reward.” (Al-Isra’: 9) We should read the Qur’an and take its hidayah and see how the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, implemented the teachings of the Qur’an in his actual example, by which he became the Qur’an in his ethics and way of life. With this, we are all responsible before Allah and accountable before Him. We can’t say that we didn’t do our job because we were waiting for the Mahdi or for somebody else to lead us to the straight path.”
Similarly, Sheikh Muhammad Saleh Al-Munajjid, a prominent Saudi lecturer and author states the following: “There are more than one authentic hadith indicating that the Mahdi, may Allah be pleased with him, will appear at the end of time. His appearance is one of the portents of the Last Day. Among the hadiths are the following:
1- Abu Sa’eed Al-Khudri, may Allah be pleased with him, reports that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said: “At the end of the time of my Ummah, the Mahdi will appear. Allah will grant him rain, the earth will bring forth its fruits, he will give a lot of money, cattle will increase and the Muslim Ummah will become great. He will rule for seven or eight years.”
2- `Ali, may Allah be pleased with him, says: “The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said: “The Mahdi is one of us and a member of my family. Allah will guide him in a single night.” (Reported by Ahmad)
3-Abu Sa’eed Al-Khudri states that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon, said: “The Mahdi is of my lineage, with a high forehead and a long, thin, curved nose. He will fill the earth with fairness and justice as it was filled with oppression and injustice, and he will rule for seven years.” (Reported by At-Tirmidhi)
4- Jabir, may Allah be pleased with him, says that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said: ‘‘Jesus, son of Mary, will descend, and their leader, the Mahdi, will say, ‘Come and lead us in prayer.’ But he will say, ‘No, one of them should lead them as an honor to this Ummah from Allah.” (Reported by Muslim)
You should be aware that some people have lied and fabricated hadiths about the Mahdi. Some of those “false Mahdis” have tried to deceive the servants of Allah for some worldly gain and distort the picture of Islam. Some have started movements and revolutions and gathered support from the people they deceived. But they were destroyed, and their lies and falsehood were exposed”
Regarding Mahdi, we can say that we have a firm belief in all the previously mentioned hadiths. However, such hadiths have nothing to do with legislation and Islamic rulings pertaining to Halal and Haram. A Muslim should strive hard to adhere to the teachings of Islam amidst all these material trappings and temptations. We can not expect a Muslim to suffer humiliation and failure in facing the realities of life, and then anxiously await the appearance of the Mahdi who may appear after 1,000 years or more. No one knows the exact time of his appearance except Allah. If Salahud-Deen, `Imadud-Deen Zenki, Qutuz , Nourud-Deen Mahmoud and Muhammad Al-Fateh had adopted the same policy of retreat, the Muslim Ummah would have been subjected to endless suffering at the hands of Crusaders, Tartars and others.