“The best people are those of my generation, then those who come after them, then those who come after them. Then, there will come people after them whose testimony precedes their oaths and their oaths precede their testimony.” The Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him.
Reported by Abdullah ibn Mas’ud. Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 6065, Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim 2533.
What this shows is there is something special about the Companions of the Prophet, and their Successors (for the next two generations). They are the Golden Generation: al-Qurun al-Dhahabiyyah. It was due to their Imaan (faith) and the Tawheed that they lived and breathed, garnered from the Prophet himself, peace be upon him, that make them examples of how to practice the teaching of the Prophet (Deen al-Islam). What is clear is they were united in their Aqeedah.
“And the intended purpose is that the Sahaabah – may Allaah be pleased with them – did not fight ever, over a principle (qaa’idah) from the principles of Islaam originally. And they did not differ in anything from the qawaa’id of Islaam, not about the Attributes, not about the Qadr, not about the issues of al-Asmaa` and al-Ahkaam (rulings), nor in the issues of the Imaamah.” (Minhaajus-Sunnah (6/336) of Ibn Taymiyyah)