One often hears the Baha’is and Qadianis saying, ” Khatam un-Nabiyyin has not been interpreted as “the Last Prophet” by the Holy Prophet(s) himself. The fact is that the Holy Prophet himself has explained this phrase in these words.
The First Tradition
And I am Khatam un-Nabiyyin, there is no prophet after myself. The Tradition (Hadith) is this:
“Thauban said that the Holy Prophet (s) said: (in a long tradition part of which is that) “there will appear in my Ummah thirty imposters each of them will claim to be a prophet while I am Khatam un-Nabiyyin, there is no prophet after me.
This tradition is found in Abu Dawood Kitabul-Fitan; and another tradition of the same meaning from Abu Huraira in Kitab-ul-Malahim. Both traditions are narrated by Tirmizi also.
The Second Tradition
The Holy Prophet (s) said: “The simile of myself and the other prophets is the simile of a well-built palace in which the place of a brick was left vacant; the sight-seers were roaming around that palace expressing their wonder on its fine construction except the place of that missing brick. Thus, I am that brick and I closed the gap of that place. The construction was completed by me and the messengers of God: were completed by me. So, I am that brick and I am ‘Khatam un-Nabiyyin’ (the last Prophet).”
This tradition has been recorded in Saheeh Bukhari (Kitab-ul’Manaqib; Bab Khatamun-Nabiyyin) with minor variations in wordings.
It means that after the advent of the Holy Prophet of Islam (s), the building of Prophethood was complete; there is no vacant place left, so that another Nabi be expected to come and fill that place.
There are four traditions like this one in Saheeh Muslim (Kitabul-Fadhail, Bab Khatamun Nabiyyin) and the last of those traditions has these extra words: “Then I came and I closed the prophets”.
The same tradition in the same words is found in Saheeh Tirmizi (Kitab-ul-Manaqib, Bab Fazlin Nabi; and Kitab-ul-Adab, Bab-ul-Amthal).
In Musnad of Abu Dawood Tayalisi this tradition has been narrated by Jabir bin Abdullah Ansari, and its last words are: “The Prophets have been closed by me”.
And these traditions with minor differences in the wordings are found in Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal narrated by Ubai bin Ka’ab, Abu Said Khudri and Abu Huraira.
The Third Tradition
The Holy Prophet said (s): “Qiyamah will not come till many groups from my Ummah follow the idol-worshippers (commit capital sins like the idol worshippers) and till they worship idols; and surely there will be in my Ummah 30 impostors, every one of them will suppose himself to be a prophet; while I am ‘Khatam un-Nabiyyin’ (last prophet), there is no prophet after me.”
Tirmizi has narrated these traditions from Thauban and Abu Huraira, and the second tradition says:
“Till there will be about thirty imposters each of them would claim to be a messenger of Allah”.