Third, the doubts, which claimers raised that knowledge was not written or classified except in the second century AH depending on some narrations reported from some classifiers and historians, were not true because there is a clear difference between:
A- Confining knowledge.
B- Writing down knowledge.
C- Classification of knowledge.
The meaning of confining knowledge is: Outlining and writing it which is more inclusive than being collected or scattered, arranged and classified or not. You say: A person confines knowledge by a book which means: ascertained and outlined it. (1)
Writing down knowledge means: Collecting the scattered material in one book whether arranged or not because the meaning of a book in the language is the combination of sheets. (2)
Classification of knowledge means: Classifying what has been written in chapters. You say: Classifying something means to arrange it in a certain order. (3)
Based on what has been mentioned, classifiers and historians do not mean that Ibn Shihab Az-Zhuhry was the first one to write down Hadith by the command of `Umar ibn `Abdul-`Aziz. They do not mean that he was the first one to collect Hadith, but they meant that he was the first one to collect them in one volume. They also did not mean that classification did not happen except in the second century AH, but they meant that it was arranged and classified starting from that time to facilitate referring to it and to discriminate between the authentic and fabricated Hadith. (4)
That refutes the claims which say that the Sunnah was not written in the first century AH. The Sunnah has been and shall remain a proof in the religion of Allah (may He be Glorified and Exalted) upon which Muslim depend as a source of legislation. (5)
(1) See: Al Mu`jam Al Wasit 2 / 769.
(2) See: Lisan Al `Arab 17 / 23.
(3) See: Mukhtar As-Sihah p. 371.
(4) See: Taqyid Al `Ilm of Al Khatib Al Baghdady, Al Ilma` of Al Qady `Iyad p. 146 149, and Al Ba`ith Al Hathith by sheikh Ahmad Shakir p. 111 - 112.
(5) See: Shifa' As-Sudur fi Tarikh As-Sunnah wa Manahij Al Muhaddithin p. 107 109.