Ignorantly performing the obligatory prayer before it’s appointed time

Reference: I’laam al-Mu’aasireen bi-Fataawa Ibn ‘Uthaymeen – Page 47

Question: If a person is ignorant about the time of the prayer and prays before its appointed time, then what is the ruling [of the prayer he has just performed]?

Response: A person’s [performance of the] prayer before it’s appointed time does not relinquish him of it’s obligation as Allaah (Subhaanahu wa Ta’aala) says:

{Verily, as-Salaah (the prayer) is enjoined on the believers at fixed hours}, soorah an-Nisaa., aayah 103

And the Prophet (sal-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) has explained these times (fixed hours) in his saying:

«The time for the Zhuhr [prayer] is once the Sun has passed it’s highest point (zawaal)…»…and so on the hadeeth relates, transmitted by al-Bukhaaree, No.541

So, based upon this, whoever performs the prayer before its appointed time then his [performance of the] prayer does not relinquish him from its obligation. However, [the performance of this obligatory prayer before its appointed time] is regarded as a voluntary prayer, meaning that it is rewarded as a voluntary prayer and he is required to repeat the [obligatory} prayer at it’s [appointed] time, and Allaah [alone] has the Complete knowledge [of all affairs].

- from London, UK. He is a graduate of the Islaamic University of Madeenah, having graduated from the Institute of Arabic Language, and later the Faculty of Sharee'ah in 2004.

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