ZAKAH AND SPENDING
WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THIS?
What about this verse in the Qur’an…
and [yet], do not forget your share of the world. (Al Qasas 28:77)
What to do with this verse?
A lot of so called Muslims today, when they hear this message of spending and sacrificing their wealth for Allah, answer back with this particular verse
which is actually 1/3 of a verse. They justify their greed by saying, ‘look, Allah SWT wants us to gain our share of the duniya.’
We cannot do this with the Qur’an. We cannot take the middle of a verse and use it out of context to validate our actions. Muslim scholars clearly state
that if you want to comprehend any verse of the Qur’an you have to first understand the context it was revealed in. Now if you want to understand this
often misquoted verse, go from verses 76 to 83:
Indeed, Qarun was from the people of Moses, but he tyrannized them. And We gave him of treasures whose keys would burden a band of strong men;
thereupon his people said to him, "Do not exult. Indeed, Allah does not like the exultant.
But seek, through that which Allah has given you, the home of the Hereafter; and [yet], do not forget your share of the world. And do good as Allah has
done good to you. And desire not corruption in the land. Indeed, Allah does not like corrupters."
He said, "I was only given it because of knowledge I have." Did he not know that Allah had destroyed before him of generations those who were greater
than him in power and greater in accumulation [of wealth]? But the criminals, about their sins, will not be asked.
So he came out before his people in his adornment. Those who desired the worldly life said, "Oh, would that we had like what was given to Qarun.
Indeed, he is one of great fortune."
But those who had been given knowledge said, "Woe to you! The reward of Allah is better for he who believes and does righteousness. And none are
granted it except the patient."
And We caused the earth to swallow him and his home. And there was for him no company to aid him other than Allah , nor was he of those who [could]
And those who had wished for his position the previous day began to say, "Oh, how Allah extends provision to whom He wills of His servants and
restricts it! If not that Allah had conferred favor on us, He would have caused it to swallow us. Oh, how the disbelievers do not succeed!"
That home of the Hereafter We assign to those who do not desire exaltedness upon the earth or corruption. And the [best] outcome is for the righteous.
(Al Qasas 28: 76-83)
This is the story of a man named Qarun whose only concern was accumulation of wealth by all possible means. Allah SWT gave us his example as a warning, not
to take him as a role model. Allah SWT is warning us not to be like him! Those who quote this segment of the verse to validate their accumulation of wealth
are completely off!
This segment of the verse is actually an advice in the middle of a conversation between some pious people of the community and Qarun. They advised Qarun
not to forget his share of duniya and do good deeds.
What is a person’s real share from this duniya?
Majority of the scholars agree that your share from this duniya is what you will take with you after death. This share of your duniya is what
will benefit you and lead you to jannah. Anything else that we accumulate which is not for the sake of Allah is in reality a waste and will not be in our
favor on the Day of Judgment when we will have to stand in front of Allah SWT and justify it.
Please read the entire chapter of Al Qasas and try to comprehend the main wisdom behind it; especially the ending verses of the chapter. You will
InshaAllah understand what I am talking about.
Someone might wonder that this article was supposed to be about zakah and various forms of spending; then what is up with these additional issues?
I am trying to gather all the misconstrued understandings about this particular issue to help you comprehend it from a broader perspective. I hope to save
myself and many others on the Day we will be standing in front of Allah SWT and will be questioned for everything we accumulated, where it came from, where
we spent it, and most of all what was our intention while doing it.
And how many a city have We destroyed that was insolent in its [way of] living, and those are their dwellings which have not been inhabited after them
except briefly. And it is We who were the inheritors.
And never would your Lord have destroyed the cities until He had sent to their mother a messenger reciting to them Our verses. And We would not destroy
the cities except while their people were wrongdoers. (Al Qasas 28: 58-59)
ISLAM IS A GIFT FROM ALLAH
They consider it a favor to you that they have accepted Islam. Say, "Do not consider your Islam a favor to me. Rather, Allah has conferred favor upon you that He has guided you to the faith, if you should be truthful."
"Verily Allah knows the secrets of the heavens and the earth: and Allah Sees well all that you do." (Hujurat 49:17-18)
WHO IS THE BEST AND MOST PRESTIGEOUS IN THE EYES OF ALLAH SWT?
In these verses, Allah SWT is challenging mankind in a decisive language declaring to us who is the best speaker, who is the best doer, and who is the chosen one!
Our lives and our children are a trust from Allah SWT to us. Just look at what majority of us are aiming for and grooming our children for—learned or not learned! Are we aiming to be the best according to Allah SWT’s definition or are we just preparing for material life and that’s it?
Who is better in speech than one who calls (men) to Allah, works righteousness, and says, "I am of those who bow in Islam"?
Nor can goodness and Evil be equal. Repel (Evil) with what is better: Then will he between whom and you was hatred become as it were your friend and
And no one will be granted such goodness except those who exercise patience and self-restraint,- none but persons of the greatest good fortune.
PURPOSE AND DUTY OF A MUSLIM
Indeed, We have sent you as a witness and a bringer of good tidings and a warner
That you [people] may believe in Allah and His Messenger and honor him and respect the Prophet and exalt Allah morning and afternoon.
Indeed, those who pledge allegiance to you, [O Muhammad] - they are actually pledging allegiance to Allah . The hand of Allah is over their hands. So
he who breaks his word only breaks it to the detriment of himself. And he who fulfills that which he has promised Allah - He will give him a great
(Al Fath 48:8-10)
The Believers are but a single Brotherhood: So make peace and reconciliation between your two (contending) brothers; and fear Allah, that you may receive Mercy. (Hujurat 49:10)
O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know each other (not that you may despise (each other). Verily the most honored of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And Allah has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things). (Hujurat 49:13)
WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU FORGET THE MESSAGE?
O you who believe! Fear Allah, and let every soul look to what (provision) He has sent forth for the morrow. Yea, fear Allah: for Allah is
well-acquainted with (all) that you do.
And be you not like those who forgot Allah; and He made them forget their own souls! Such are the rebellious transgressors!
Not equal are the Companions of the Fire and the Companions of the Garden: it is the Companions of the Garden that will achieve Felicity. (Al Hashr
O you who believe! Turn not (for friendship) to people on whom is the Wrath of Allah, of the Hereafter they are already in despair, just as the Unbelievers are in despair about those (buried) in graves. (Al Mumtahina 60:13)
WARNING AGAINST ACCUMULATING DUNIYA AND NOT SPENDING
Imagine the severity of the matter when Allah the Most Merciful promises His anger, revenge, and severe torture to those who love their wealth and family
above Allah SWT and His cause. Decide for yourself whether it is worth it.
The following verses were revealed for those who delayed spending at the time of need in the path of Allah SWT. Later on Allah SWT gave them three labels: munafiqoon, fasiqoon, kafiroon; and forbade His Prophet SAW from praying over them when they die and making du’a for them.
What about us today? We watch the news, we are aware of the condition of the ummah, we know the amount of poverty and need and still we are so blind
that we cannot think beyond our own selfishness and greed. Ramadan after Ramadan, taraweeh after taraweeh and our life remains as if we have never heard
Qur’an in our lives. It is as if Qur’an is not for us!
As in the case of those before you: they were mightier than you in power, and more flourishing in wealth and children. They had their enjoyment of their portion: and you have of yours, as did those before you; and you indulge in idle talk as they did. They!- their work are fruitless in this world and in the Hereafter, and they will lose (all spiritual good). (At Tawba 9:69)
Let not their wealth nor their (following in) sons dazzle you: in reality Allah's plan is to punish them with these things in this life, and that their
souls may perish in their (very) denial of Allah.
They swear by Allah that they are indeed of you; but they are not of you: yet they are afraid (to appear in their true colors). (At Tawba 9:55-56)
Say: If it be that your fathers, your sons, your brothers, your mates, or your kindred; the wealth that you have gained; the commerce in which you fear
a decline: or the dwellings in which you delight - are dearer to you than Allah, or His Messenger, or the striving in His cause;- then wait until Allah
brings about His decision: and Allah guides not the rebellious. (At Tawba 9:24)
Nor let their wealth nor their (following in) sons dazzle you: Allah's plan is to punish them with these things in this world, and that their souls may perish in their (very) denial of Allah. (At Tawba 9:85)
BEARER OF THE LIGHT OF ALLAH
Considering the condition of the ummah today, if we do not support the cause of Islam by all means possible, we actually act like the enemy of
The light of Allah has its own customers, Allah SWT chooses whom He wants to carry his noor.
Question to ask yourself:
Am I trying to diminish the light or am I a part of spreading it?
If you are spending to support the deen of Allah in every aspect, you are elevating the noor of Allah. If you are stingy and you love your
money above the deen of Allah, you are diminishing the noor of Allah in earth.
Fain would they extinguish Allah's light with their mouths, but Allah will not allow but that His light should be perfected, even though the
Unbelievers may detest (it). (At Tawba 9:32)
But if they turn away, Say: "Allah is sufficient for me: there is no god but He: On Him is my trust,- He the Lord of the Throne (of Glory) Supreme!"
(At Tawba 9:129)
When certain communities withheld part of the zakah after the death of Prophet SAW, Abu Bakr (RA) considered them out of Islam (murtad) and
waged war against them saying…“Is the deen of Allah to diminish while I am alive?" He accepted the responsibility of the deen of Allah SWT
and did whatever was in his power to serve the cause.
Today we are suffering from the consequences of the loss of this sense of responsibility. When people start taking the deen slightly, when they
delay salah, delay zakah, delay, delay, delay…eventually the outcome is disastrous. All our actions have a reflection on society and
humanity; starvation, illnesses, orphans living and dying with injustices are among the many calamities caused by our negligence. Our delay in carrying out
goodness and justice is spreading mischief in earth.
We are supposed to be the carrier of the message—the noor of Allah, His light and mercy to humanity. At this point, neither are we benefitting from
this message nor allowing others to do so. Not only that, our bad manners actually destroy the image of Islam and we see its result in the condition of the ummah today. We are passing on this state of affairs to our progeny and the cycle will continue.
We forget that everything that is given to us is amanah, a trust and we will be held responsible for it. We will stand in front of Allah SWT and
will be questioned about our time, wealth, effort, everything! This forgetfulness is caused by blindness. It saddens me to say that our greed and
selfishness has made us blind. Our hearts have hardened to the point we cannot feel for others any more.
If I say all that I want to, this article will be over 300 pages long. I already have the material! I advise you to read the ahadeeth of the Prophet
SAW on the topic of spending and you will be fearful of our condition. If you like, request part 2 of ‘Zakah and Spending’, where I will take you
through the ahadeeth of the Prophet SAW step by step to explain the importance of charity.
In the next few lines, I will try to share some of the benefits of charity as explained by our beloved Prophet SAW:
Charity cures diseases.
Charity protects us from the wrath of Allah SWT.
- Charity alleviates and protects us from major calamities.
- Charity cleanses us and cleanses our book from bad deeds.
Charity is a blessing for us and our family.
- Charity makes us beloved to Allah SWT and secures for us the highest level in paradise.
- Charity is one of the elements of gaining victory from Allah SWT, and His support.
- Charity causes our good deeds to be accepted and blessed by Allah SWT.
- Charity can be the beginning of a new chapter between us and Allah and can change all conditions, whether individual or collective.
If we really comprehend this topic, we will not delay another minute in spending all that we can for the sake of Allah SWT. May Allah SWT put barakah in
every word that we have read and allow us to comprehend it, understand it, reflect on it, and act upon it to the best of our abilities. Ameen Ya Rabbal Alameen.