Zakat – The obligatory charity

Our khutba today is about a financial act of worship which protects the soul from its greed and purifies it from stinginess. It is about Zakat.

The imam speaks of the following hadith in which the prophet SAWS said:

“Islam is built on five pillars; the Shahada that there is no god except Allah and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, establishment of Salat, payment of Zakat, Hajj and the fasting of Ramadan.”

It is very important that every believer in Allah should not underestimate and neglect this significant pillar of the religion and that he/she should happily pays his/her Zakat. One should remember that it is Allah Who has blessed one with the money he has, and He only obliged him to pay a small fraction of it (2.5%) as Zakat. Compare that to the tax we pay on income of around 30%. One should also remember that Allah SWT gives great reward for the payment of Zakat on the Day of Judgement.

In addition to all of that in the payment of Zakat there is the purification of the soul from its greed and a cause for the growth and increase of the wealth.

The imam referenced ayat 105 of Sura Tauba which says:

Take sadaqat (this commanded sadaqat means – Zakat) from their wealth, so that they may thereby be cleansed and purified, and pray for them; for your prayer will give them comfort. Allah hears all and knows all.

Dear brothers and sisters, Allah SWT  made Zakat an obligation and one of the five pillars of Islam. There are two conditions for Zakat to be an obligation.

First condition that needs to be met is to own the Nisab (i.e. minimum amount of money or other type of wealth on which Zakat is payable.) Nisab differs according to the type of wealth.

The second condition that needs to be met is one must have the money in one’s possession for one lunar (Hijri) year.

The types of wealth on which Zakat is payable are:

  1. Gold and silver and banknotes (paper money) which is used nowadays instead of gold and silver as a measure of the value for goods and services.
  2. Goods stocked for trade. This is applicable to business owners.
  3. Grains fruits, cattle and minerals.

This khutba concludes with the common misconceptions about zakat that are answered for us all to benefit from paying this in the blessed month of Ramadan.

 

First point to clarify is the sterling value of the Nisab. Nisab of money is equivalent to the value (price) of 595 grams of silver. That is equal to roughly £255 today. Whoever has this amount or more saved for a (lunar) year he has to pay 2.5% of the total.

The second point to clarify is what should one do if the amount of money one has increases and decreases continuously during the year – such as if one has a monthly income and he also spends from this money throughout the year. The easiest way to calculate Zakat is this case is to determine a day in the year (e.g. in Ramadan or beginning of the Hijri year) when one pays one’s Zakat. When this day 3 comes, one should add together all the money that one has. This includes cash in hand, money in bank(s) and the value of good for trade (if one has) etc. One should deduct debts which are due for payment – and out of the remaining, one should pay 2.5% .

The third point is about the recipient of the Zakat. It is about whether it is permissible or not to give Zakat to brothers and sisters if they are poor. The answer is yes, you can give your Zakat to your brothers and sisters if they are entitled for Zakat, However, you cannot give your Zakat to your parents or children.

The imam referenced ayat 60 of Sura Tauba which is translated to say:

In fact the sadaqat (Zakah) collection is for the poor, the helpless, those employed to administer the funds, those whose hearts need to be won over to the truth, ransoming the captives, helping the destitute, in the Way of Allah and for the wayfarer. That is a duty enjoined by Allah; and Allah is All-Knowledgeable, Wise.

Finally, one of the types of wealth on which Zakat is payable is goods which are stocked for trade. The Nisab is equal to that of paper money. At the end of year, the trader makes an evaluation of all the goods he has in stock. What is considered here is the sale value of the goods – not the purchase value. The amount which should be paid as Zakat is 2.5% of the total value of the goods. It is very important for shop owners to pay their Zakat. They must not forget or neglect it.

The imam referenced ayats 34 and 35 of Sura Tauba which is translated to say:

To those who hoard gold and silver and do not spend it in the way of Allah, proclaim a painful punishment.

The Day will surely come when their treasure will be heated up in the fire of hell, and their foreheads, sides and backs branded with it. They will be told: “This is the treasure which you hoarded. Now taste what you were hoarding!”

Dear brothers and sisters, zakat is a compulsory charity as instructed by the giver of our sustenance. It would be non-sensical to ignore this duty that is placed upon us. And by using this month as the financial end of year, we can fulfil the duty placed upon us as well as earn the extra reward of performing this great deed in the month of Ramadan.

May Allah SWT bless us with the means to pay Zakat. May Allah SWT reward us for paying Zakat and may Allah SWT reward us in our efforts to purify our wealth.

Ameen walhamdulilahirabilalameen

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