Friday (Jumuah) is the best day of the week.
Abu Huraira reported the Apostle of Allah (may peace be upon him) as saying: “The best day on which the sun has risen is Friday; on it Adam was created. on it he was made to enter Paradise , on it he was expelled from it. And the last hour will take place on no day other than Friday.”
[Sahih Muslim, Book 004, Number 1857]
Supplications during Friday
One should do ones best to make supplications especially during the last moments (or hours) of Jumuah.
It was narrated from Anas ibn Maalik that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Seek the hour in which there is hope that prayers will be answered, on Friday after Asr (mid-afternoon) prayer, until the sun goes down.” (Narrated by al-Tirmidhi; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Targheeb wa’l-Tarheeb, no. 700).
Recitation of Surah al-Kahf
It is preferred to recite surah al-Kahf during the day and night of Jumuah.
Abu Said al-Khudri reports that the Prophet said: “Whoever recites Surah al-Kahf on Jumu’ah will have illumination from the light from one Jumu’ah to the next.” (Narrated by al-Haakim, 2/399; al-Bayhaqi, 3/249. Ibn Hajar said in Takhreej al-Adhkaar that this is a hasan hadeeth, and he said, this is the strongest report that has been narrated concerning reading Soorat al-Kahf. See: Fayd al-Qadeer, 6/198. It was classed as saheeh by Shaykh al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Jaami’, 6470).
Performing ghusl, beautifying ones self, using the miswak, and using perfume for any gathering and especially for Salatul Jumu’ah
It is preferred for anyone – man or woman, an elderly or young person, a traveler or a resident – who desires to attend the Salatul Jumuah or any gathering of the people, to cleanse and to wear best attire. One should perform Ghusl, put on one’s finest clothing, apply perfume, and to brush one’s teeth. The following Hadith are recorded on this matter:
It was narrated in a hadeeth that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever makes his wife do ghusl and does ghusl himself on Friday and goes out early, walking not riding, and comes close to the imaam and listens [to the sermon] without interrupting, will have for each step he takes a reward equal to that of fasting and praying at night for one year.” (Narrated by Ahmad and al-Tirmidhi; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Targheeb wa’l-Tarheeb, no. 687)
Narrated Salman-Al-Farsi: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, “Whoever takes a bath on Friday, purifies himself as much as he can, then uses his (hair) oil or perfumes himself with the scent of his house, then proceeds (for the Jumua prayer) and does not separate two persons sitting together (in the mosque), then prays as much as (Allah has) written for him and then remains silent while the Imam is delivering the Khutba, his sins in-between the present and the last Friday would be forgiven.” [Sahih Bukhari, Volume 2, Book 13, Number 8]
Going early to Salatul Jumuah
Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, “When it is a Friday, the angels stand at the gate of the mosque and keep on writing the names of the persons coming to the mosque in succession according to their arrivals. The example of the one who enters the mosque in the earliest hour is that of one offering a camel (in sacrifice). The one coming next is like one offering a cow and then a ram and then a chicken and then an egg respectively. When the Imam comes out (for Jumua prayer) they (i.e. angels) fold their papers and listen to the Khutba.” [Sahih Bukhari, Volume 2, Book 13, Number 51]
Performing Tahayyatul Masjid before salatul Jumuah
It is a sunnah to offer supererogatory prayers before al-Jumuah until the imam arrives. After the imams arrival, one should no longer offer any salah, except for the prayer of greeting the mosque (tahayyatul masjid) which may be performed quickly during the khutbah unless one comes at the end of the khutbah and would not have the time [i.e., before the actual salah begins] to perform tahayyatul masjid.
Narrated Jabir bin Abdullah: A person entered the mosque while the Prophet was delivering the Khutba on a Friday. The Prophet said to him, “Have you prayed?” The man replied in the negative. The Prophet said, “Get up and pray two Rakat.” [Sahih Bukhari, Volume 2, Book 13, Number 52]
Nawafl after al-Jumuah
It is a sunnah to pray four rakat or two rakat after al-Jumuah:
Abu Huraira reported Allahs Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: When any one amongst you observes prayer after Jumua, he should observe four rakahs. (In the hadith transmitted by Jarir the word minkum is not recorded.) [Sahih Muslim, Book 004, Number 1917]
Nafi reported that when Abdullah (b. Umar) observed the Friday prayer and came back he observed two rakahs in his house, and then said: The Messenger of Allah (may peace be updn him) used to do this. [Sahih Muslim, Book 004, Number 1918]
Our sheikh Ibn Taimiyyah says: ‘When he prayed in the mosque, he would pray four [rakat], and when he prayed in his house, he would pray two rakat.’ I say: this is what the hadith is pointing to. Abu Dawud records from ibn ‘Umar that when he prayed in the mosque, he would pray four rak’at, and when he prayed in his house, he would pray two rak’at. Also, in the two Sahihs it is reported from ibn ‘Umar that the Prophet would pray two rak’at in his house after the Friday salah.”
If one prays four rakat, then, according to some, he is to pray them all connected, while majority others hold that he is to pray two rakat, make the taslim, followed by another two rakat. It is preferred to pray them in ones house. If one prays them in the mosque, he should change his place of prayer after the Friday salah.
The Friday prayer as an obligation
The scholars are in agreement that salatul Jumu’ah is an individual obligation and it is two rak’at. Allah says in the Qur’an:- “O you who believe (Muslims)! When the call is proclaimed for the Salât (prayer) on the day of Friday (Jumu’ah prayer), come to the remembrance of Allâh [Jumu’ah religious talk (Khutbah) and Salât (prayer)] and leave off business (and every other thing), that is better for you if you did but know!” (Al-Jumu’ah 62:9)
Upon whom salatul Jumuah is obligatory
Salatul Jumuah is an obligation upon every free, adult, sane, resident Muslim who has the ability to attend the salah and does not have a valid excuse to miss it. Salatul Jumu’ah, however, is not obligatory on the following:
1. Women and children. Concerning this category there is no difference of opinion.
The evidence for that is the hadeeth of Taariq ibn Shihaab (may Allaah be pleased with him) according to which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Jumu’ah is a duty that is required of every Muslim in congregation, except four: a slave, a woman, a child or one who is sick.” Narrated by Abu Dawood 91067). Al-Nawawi said in al-Majmoo’ (4/482): its isnaad is saheeh according to the conditions of the two Shaykhs (al-Bukhaari and Muslim). Ibn Rajab said in Fath al-Baari (5/327): its isnaad is saheeh. Ibn Katheer said in Irshaad al-Faqeeh (1/190): its isnaad is jayyid. It was also classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Jaami’ (3111).
2. The person who is ill and faces hardship if he goes to the mosque, or who fears that his illness will be increased by going to the mosque, or whose recovery will be delayed. This also includes the person who is nursing a very ill person if, especiallay, the ill person cannot manage in the absence of the nursing person.
3. For the traveller, even if he is staying at a certain place during the time of the beginning of salatul Jumuah, it is not obligatory.
Salaat al-Jumuah (Friday prayer) is not obligatory on the traveller. This is the opinion of the majority of scholars, including the followers of the four schools of Abu Haneefah, Maalik, al-Shaafa’i and Ahmad… Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in al-Fataawa (24/178): “The correct opinion, without a doubt… is that this (Jumu’ah and Eid prayers) are not obligatory for the traveller. The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to travel frequently: he performed ‘Umrah three times, besides the ‘Umrah he performed along with Hajj. He performed his Farewell Pilgrimage accompanied by thousands upon thousands of people, and he went on more than twenty military campaigns, but there are no reports at all that say he prayed Jumu’ah or Eid prayers when travelling; he just prayed two rak’ahs [i.e., shortened prayers] as on all the other days…”
All of these people are not obliged to pray the Friday salah although they are obliged to pray the zuhr. Should one of them pray salatul Jumu’ah, it will still be valid for him or her and he will no longer be obliged to pray the zuhr. And the women during the time of the Prophet sallallahu alehi wasallam, attended the mosque and used to pray al-Jumu’ah with him.
It is forbidden to speak during the khutbah.
The majority of the scholars are of the opinion that it is obligatory to be silent during the khutbah, and one is not to indulge in conversation during the khutbah, not even if it is to order one to do some good or to stop some evil, and this rule applies whether or not the person sitting in the mosque can actually hear the khutbah.
Abu Huraira reported Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: If you (even) ask your companion to be quiet on Friday while the Imam is delivering the sermon, you have in fact talked irrelevance [ie. engaged in idle talk]. [Sahih Muslim, Book 004, Number 1846]
It was narrated that Abu’l-Darda’ said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) sat on the minbar and addressed the people, and he recited a verse. Ubayy ibn Ka’b was next to me, so I said to him: “O Ubayy, when was this verse revealed?” But he refused to speak to me, so I asked him again and he refused to speak to me, until the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) came down (from the minbar). Then Ubayy said to me: “You have gained nothing from your Jumu’ah except idle talk.” When the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) had finished (the prayer), I went to him and told him (what had happened). He said: “Ubayy was right. When you hear your imam speaking, then keep quiet and listen attentively until he has finished.” [Narrated by Ahmad, 20780; Ibn Maajah, 1111; classed as saheeh by al-Busayri and al-Albaani in Tamaam al-Mannah, p. 338]
It says in Fataawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah (8/242):
It is not permissible to say Yarhamuk-Allaah (may Allaah have mercy on you) to one who sneezes or to return salaams whilst the imam is delivering the khutbah, according to the correct scholarly opinion, because both of them involve speaking, which is forbidden when the imam is delivering the khutbah, because of the general meaning of the hadeeth.
It also says (8/243):
It is not permissible for the one who enters whilst the imam is delivering the khutbah on Friday, if he can hear the khutbah, to greet the people in the mosque, and those in the mosque should not return his greeting whilst the imam is delivering the khutbah.
And it says (8/244):
It is not permissible to speak whilst the khateeb is delivering the Friday sermon except for one who speaks to the imam for an important reason.
Sunnah to turn ones face towards the khateeb and look at him
Sheikh Al-Albaani (may Allaah have mercy on him) compiled these ahaadeeth in al-Silsilat al-Saheehah, no. 2080, and commented on them.
It was narrated that Abu Sa’eed al-Khudri (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: “The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) sat on the minbar and we sat around him.” [Sahih Bukhari, Volume 2, Book 13, Number 44]
Al-Bukhaari narrated the hadeeth in “Chapter: The imaam facing the people, and the people turning their faces towards the imaam when he delivers the khutbah, and Ibn ‘Umar and Anas (may Allaah be pleased with them) turning their faces towards the imaam.”