Ismāʿīlism (Arabic: الإسماعيلية al-Ismāʿīliyya; Persian: اسماعیلیان; Sindhi: اسماعيلي; Esmāʿīliyān) is a branch of Shia Islam. The Ismāʿīlī get their name from their acceptance of Imam Isma'il ibn Jafar as the appointed spiritual successor (Imām) to Ja'far al-Sadiq, wherein they differ from the Twelvers who accept Musa al-Kadhim, younger brother of Isma'il, as the true Imām. Ismailism rose at one point to become the largest branch of Shī‘ism, climaxing as a political power with the Fatimid Caliphate in the tenth through twelfth centuries. Ismailis believe in the oneness of God, as well as the closing of divine revelation with Muhammad, whom they see as "the final Prophet and Messenger of God to all humanity".
We have in our main books of Hadeeth two narrations from Esma'eel son of Imam Ja'far Al-Sadiq (AS); one in Al-Kaafi by Al-Kulaini , volume 7, page 388, and the second narration is in Al-Tahtheeb by Al-Shaikh Al-Tousi, volume 6, page 287. The reason can be because he passed away during the life of his father when people used to take the Hadeeths from Imam Ja'far Al-Sadiq (AS) himself.
I did not find any narration in our main books from Muhammad ibn Esma'eel who was in touch with the Abbasid tyrant Haroon Al-Rasheed who put imam Musa A;-Kadhim (AS) in jail for long years then killed him by poison.
The current imam of the time is Imam Al-Mahdi who is the 12th imam and the son of the 11th imam, Imam Hassan Al-Askari.
We have many authentic and reliable ahadith relating to the matter of the 12th imam. Allah swt also prolonged his age just like He did with previous prophets.
Inshallah soon I will release a translation of a book being worked on relating to authentic ahadith on this matter.
About some Ismailis, although their imam of the time would be the current Agha Khan, for the 12er Shias, he is a false imam who shouldn’t be followed. The Bohra Ismailis also follow a different imam and have their daei’ mutlaq.
One may also notice that the Ismaili Agha Khanis have abandoned all shariah practices because of their current imam. For example many Ismailis do not fast, pray like Muslims do, perform hajj, wear hijab, focus on tahara or many other important jurisprudential issues.
We ask Allah to guide them and us all
All Muslims believe that every thing is in the hands of Allah (SWT) and we seek help of the most humble servants of Allah who are the Prophet and his Holy Progeny to pray to Allah for fulfilling our wishes and needs.
Esmaeli and all Muslim sects are no exception.
The Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) has clearly said: My successors will be twelve. (Saheeh Bukhari, Hadeeth number 6682, Saheeh Muslim, Hadeeth number 3393, Tirmithi, Hadeeth number 2149 and hundreds of Sunni books as well as Shia books. The names of he twelve Imams were mentioned by the Prophet himself. We believe and follow the Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) by believing and following the Twelve Imams after him. The forst Imam is Ameerul Mo'mineen Ali (AS) and the last Imam is Imam Al-Mahdi (AS).
Any other sect who claim Imams apart from teh Twelve Imams need to proof their claim from authentic Hadeeths. We have not seen any authentic evidence about Imams apart from the Twelve Imams.
Ismailies, Bohras etc are Muslims like any other Muslim sect.
There is no single authentic narration from Imam Jafar Al-Sadiq (AS) has ever said that his son Ismail will be the Imam after him. On the contrary, there are authentic narrations from Imam Jafar Al-Sadiq (AS) stating that Ismail is not the Imam. When Ismail passed away during the life of his father, Imam Jafar Al-Sadiq (AS) opened his coffin many times and called people to witness his death and warned them from thinking that Ismail will succeed him as an Imam.
No change in decree regarding this mater at all. Imam Musa Ibn Jafar (AS) was the Imam right from the beginning when the Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) informed about the names of the twelve Imams.
The dangerous political situation of Abbasids against Ahlul Bayt (AS), did not allow the names of some Imams to be declared in public as the tyrant rulers were after their lives. Imam Jafar Al-Sadiq (AS) made his last well for five persons to save Imam Musa Al-Kadhim (AS) from the evil of the Abbasid ruler Abu Jafar al-Mansour. Imam made his last well for : 1. His son Abdullah, 2. His wife Hameeda, 3. Al-Mansour himself, 4. The ruler of Madina on behalf of Al-Mansour and 5. Imam Musa Ibn Jafar (AS).
BY this way, Imam Jafar Al-Sadiq (AS) could save Imam Musa Al-Kadhim from the evil acts of Al-Mansour.
The claim of Imamate of Ismail was made by people supported by Abbasid rulers to weaken the unity of the Shia. As he was dead when Imam Jafar Al-Sadiq (AS was martyred, the Abbasid agents claimed his son Mohammad Ibn Ismail as an Imam.
If you read about this mater, you will clearly see that here is comparison between the knowledge and behavior of Imam Musa Al-Kadhim (AS) and Mohammad Ibn Ismail at all.
The Imamate of Imam Musa Ibn Jafar Al-Kadhim (AS) is supported by most authentic evidence, exactly like the evidence of Imamate of Imam Jafar Al-Sadiq (AS) and previous Imams (AS).