Perhaps it might be difficult for some people to believe or they may be surprised at the fact that whether Imam Mahdi (a.t.f.s.) is really superior to the Prophets? He certainly is!
The 7th century Ahle Tasannun scholar and traditionalist Yusuf Ibn Yahya Shaafei in his book Iqd al-Durar, vol. 1, p. 222, tradition 241, narrates from Muhammad Ibn Sireen who was asked,
“Is Mahdi (a.t.f.s.) superior or Abu Bakr and Umar?” He replied, ‘He (Mahdi) is superior to both of them and in fact, he is equal to Prophets (peace be upon them).”
And in the next tradition on p. 150 he states,
“Indeed, he (Mahdi) is (actually) superior to some of the Prophets (peace be upon them).”
Another tradition has been narrated from the same narrator Muhammad Ibn Sireen is also found in the book Al-Mu’jam al-Sagheer of Hafiz Sulaiman Tabarani, p. 150 that Imam Mahdi (a.t.f.s.) is superior to all Prophets (peace be upon them) except the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him and his holy progeny).
Therefore, whoever believes in the Prophethood of 124000 prophets must also believe in the Imamate and Caliphate of the 12 Imams (a.s.) and especially in this time, the Imamate and Caliphate of Imam Mahdi (a.t.f.s.). We are surprised at the astonishment of the skeptics because it is worth noting that the true scholars of the progeny of Muhammad (peace be upon him and his holy progeny) being considered superior to the Prophets of Bani Israel does not surprise them but when the superiority of the successor of the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him and his holy progeny) over the Prophets is discussed, those very people express surprise and are unable to digest it.
We pray to Allah that He hastens the reappearance of Imam Mahdi (a.t.f.s.) and keeps us attached to his Imamate and Mastership until our last breath.
Aameen, O Lords of the worlds!