Those who say that the Messiah, son of Maryam, is the third of three are disbelievers. There is no god but One God. (Surat al-Ma’idah: 73)
In this case, the commentary of the statement, "And I will place the people who follow you above those who are disbelievers until the Day of Rising" is as follows: first, it is said that these people are the Muslims who are the only true followers of the authentic teachings of Jesus (as); second, it is said that these people are the Christians, whether or not they hold idolatrous beliefs, and that could be seen to be confirmed by the dominant position that nominal Christians hold on the earth today. However, both positions will be unified by the arrival of Jesus (as), since he will abolish the jizyah, meaning that he will not accept that Christians and Jews live with any other religion than Islam, and so will unite all the believers as Muslims.
The Prophet and last Messenger of Allah (saas), has also given the glad tidings of the return of Jesus (as). The scholars of ahadith (reports on the sayings and the traditions of Prophet Mohammad) say that the ahadith on this subject, in which Allah’s Messenger (saas) said that the Prophet Jesus (as) will descend amongst people as a leader before the Day of Judgement have reached the status of mutawatir. That means that they have been narrated by so many people from each generation from such a large group of the Companions that there can be no possible doubt of their authenticity. For example:
Abu Hurairah (ra) narrated that Allah's Messenger, peace be upon him, said, "By the One in Whose hand is my self, definitely the son of Maryam will soon descend among you as a just judge, and he will break the cross, kill the pig and abolish the jizyah, and wealth will be so abundant that no one will accept it, until a single prostration will be better than the world and everything in it. (Sahih al-Bukhari)
Jabir ibn 'Abdullah said, "I heard the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, saying, 'A party of my ummah will never stop fighting for the truth victoriously until the Day of Rising.' He said, 'Then ‘Isa ibn Maryam, peace be upon him, will descend and their amir will say, "Come and lead us in prayer," but he will say, "No! some of you are amirs over others," as Allah's showing honour to this ummah.'" (Sahih Muslim)
Abu Hurairah (ra) narrated, "The Prophet, peace be upon him, said: ‘There is no prophet between me and him, that is, ‘Isa, peace be upon him. He will descend (to the earth). When you see him, recognise him: a man of medium height, reddish fair, wearing two light yellow garments, looking as if drops were falling down from his head though it will not be wet. He will fight the people for the cause of Islam. He will break the cross, kill the pig, and abolish the jizyah. Allah will cause to perish all religions except Islam. He will destroy the Dajjal and will live on the earth for forty years and then he will die. The Muslims will pray over him.’" (Abu Dawud) (2)
Earlier in this section, we analysed the verses 157-158 of Surat an-Nisa'. Just after these verses Allah states the following in Surat an Nisa 159:
There is not one of the People of the Book who will not believe in him before he dies; and on the Day of Rising he will be a witness against them. (Surat an Nisa: 159)
The statement above "who will not believe in him before he dies" is important.
Some scholars stated that the "him" in this verse is used for the Qur'an and thus made the following interpretation: There will be no one from the people of the Book who will not have faith in the Qur'an before he (a person from the people of the Book) dies.