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Ramadan has come! Did you give in charity?

Ramadan has come! Did you give in charity? 1

It is known and understood that wealth belongs to Allah The Almighty and that He Appointed His slaves as His successors to see how will they act. He Will Ask them about it when they stand before Him. How did they collect it? And how did they spend it? Whoever earned it from lawful sources and was a good successor so that he spent it in the way of obeying Allah The Almighty and to attain His pleasure will be rewarded for acting properly. Whoever collected it from unlawful resources and was a bad successor by spending it on impermissible things will be punished and this will be the reason for his misery.

That is why the Muslim should observe what Allah The Almighty Loves with regards to his wealth if he wants to be successful in the Hereafter. He should accustom himself to hasten as much as he can to every field in which Islam urges spending and quit every field in which Islam prohibits spending. From among the greatest issues that Allah The Almighty Legislated for His slaves in the month of Ramadan is charity and spending by providing for and helping the needy and cooperating with Muslims. Many texts and reported citations clarify the virtue of charity for the sake of Allah The Almighty and out of seeking His Pleasure. Here are some to name but a few:

1- It is a great mercy that urges Muslims to do good, help the needy, be generous to the poor, sympathize with widows, wipe the tears of orphans, and be kind to them and make them happy. Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {Indeed, the men who practice charity and the women who practice charity and [they who] have loaned Allah a goodly loan – it will be multiplied for them, and they will have a noble reward.} [Quran 57:18]

2- It motivates the giver of charity. How beautiful and deep is his feeling when he lends The Rich and The Praiseworthy, deals with the Owner of the Dominion, knows that what he spends will be compensated and multiplied and that he will be rewarded after all that with a generous reward! Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {But whatever thing you spend [in His cause] – He will compensate it; and He is the best of providers.”} [Quran 34:39]. In addition, the Prophet  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said: “No day (goes by) where the slaves (of Allah The Almighty) are dawned upon but two angels come down from Heaven and one of them says: ‘O Allah! give more to every person who spends in Your Cause’ and the other (angel) says: ‘O Allah! Bring destruction to one who withholds.'” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

3- It is a reason for attaining the love of the Lord. The Messenger of Allah  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said that Allah The Exalted Says: “My slave keeps on coming closer to Me through performing Nawaafil (supererogatory acts of worship) till I Love him.” [Al-Bukhari]

4- It expiates sins and misdeeds. The Prophet  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said: “A man’s afflictions (the minor sins he commits) concerning his wife, children and neighbors are expiated by (his) prayers, charity and enjoining good.” [Al-Bukhari]

5- When the people are gathered on the Day of Resurrection, the distress increases and the sun comes near the heads of creation, those who gave in charity are shaded in the shade of the Throne of Allah The Almighty and their charities protect them from the sparks of Hellfire. The Messenger of Allah  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said: “Allah Will Give shade to seven categories of people on the Day when there will be no shade but His. These include: … a person who gives charity so secretly that his left hand does not know what his right hand has given (i.e. nobody knows how much he has given in charity).” [Al-Bukhari]

6- It is increased for its giver till it becomes like a mountain. The Prophet  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said: “If one gives in charity what equals one date fruit from lawfully earned money, and Allah only Accepts lawfully earned money, Allah Takes it in His right (hand) and then Enlarges its reward for that person (who has given it) as anyone of you brings up his baby horse so much that it becomes as big as a mountain.” [Al-Bukhari]

7- It extinguishes sins and puts out the anger of the Lord. The Prophet  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said: “Should I not tell you about the gates of good?! Fasting is a shield and charity extinguishes sin as water extinguishes fire.” [At-Tirmithi and Ibn Maajah]. Another Hadeeth reads: “Secret charity puts out the anger of the Lord.” [At-Tabaraani]

8- It protects its giver from Hellfire. ‘Adiyy ibn Haatim  [may Allah be pleased with him]  narrated that he heard the Messenger of Allah  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  saying: “Save yourself from Hellfire even by giving half a date in charity.” The Messenger of Allah  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  also said: “Whoever among you could protect himself from Hellfire with half a date in charity should do so.” [At-Tabaraani]

9- It purifies the soul. Allah The Exalted Says (what means): {Take, [O, Muhammad], from their wealth a charity by which you purify them and cause them increase.} [Quran 9:103]

10- Charity is a reason for the happiness of the needy. The Prophet  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said: “The best of deeds is that of keeping your believing brother happy, paying off a debt of his or feeding him.” [Al-Bukhari]

11- Charity pleases Allah The Almighty, rescues from destruction and perfects good deeds. Allah The Exalted Says (what means): {And spend in the way of Allah and do not throw [yourselves] with your [own] hands into destruction [by refraining]. And do good; indeed, Allah loves the doers of good.} [Quran 2:195]

12- Charity annoys Satan and necessitates the forgiveness of Allah The Exalted. Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {Satan threatens you with poverty and orders you to immorality, while Allah promises you forgiveness from Him and bounty. And Allah is all-Encompassing and Knowing.} [Quran 2:268]

13- Its wondrous impacts in the life of this world include the Hadeeth in which the Messenger of Allah  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said: “While a man was in the wilderness, he heard a voice from the cloud (commanding as thus): “Irrigate the garden of so and so”. After that, the clouds slinked aside and poured water on some stony ground. It filled a channel amongst the channels of that land and this man followed the water and found a person standing in the garden busy changing the course of the water with the help of a hatchet. He said to him: “O Servant of Allah, what is your name”? He said: “So and so”. It was that very name which he had heard from the clouds. He said to him: “O Servant of Allah, why do you ask me my name”? He said: “I heard a voice from the clouds from which this downpour came, saying: “Water the garden of so and so using your name. What do you do (for the favor shown to you by Allah) in this matter”? He said: “Now that you say this, I look to what yield I get from it and give one-third as charity out of it and I and my family eat another third of it and the remaining third I return to it as investment.”” [Muslim]

14- It saves a Muslim from miserliness. It is not at all noble that one who is rich sees his poor brothers hungry and needy and his feelings are not moved or affected to relieve their distress. Generosity is one of the morals of the Prophet  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )] . He used to give like the giving of he who does not fear poverty. He used to say: “Spend so that Allah Spends on you.”

15- It increases wealth and does not decrease it. It is a reason for its increase, development and blessing. Allah The Almighty Provides for, heals and supports the giver of charity. The Prophet  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said: “Charity does not reduce fortune and when Allah Forgives one of His servants, the latter becomes more dignified. And whoever shows humility to men for the sake of Allah, Allah Will Exalt his eminence.” [Muslim]

16- Charity is a reason for affluence in sustenance and prolonging one’s lifespan. It protects the giver of charity and his family from afflictions and diseases and prevents an evil death and foul final stage of life. Anas  [may Allah be pleased with him]  narrated that the Messenger of Allah  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said: “Hasten to charity as afflictions never transcend charity.” [Al-Bayhaqi] The Prophet  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  also said: “Heal your sick people with charity.” [Al-Bayhaqi] ʻAmr ibn ʻAwf  [may Allah be pleased with him]  narrated that the Messenger of Allah  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said: “The charity of a Muslim prolongs his lifespan, prevents an evil death and Allah Eliminates with it arrogance and poverty.” [At-Tabaraani] He also said: “Doing favors helps in saving from evil deaths, disease and destruction.” [Al-Haakim]

17- Allah The Almighty Helps the giver of charity to obey his Lord, Guides him to the paths of success and righteousness and Paves for him the road to happiness. Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {As for he who gives and fears Allah And believes in the best [reward], We will ease him toward ease.} [Quran 92:5-7]

18- Charity has a broad meaning. It encompasses every good deed; guiding a lost person, eliminating harm, establishing justice between two people, smiling at your Muslim brother, planting a tree, teaching beneficial knowledge, reconciling people and saying nice words are all considered types of charity. The Messenger of Allah  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said: “Every Muslim has to give in charity.” The people asked: “O Prophet of Allah! If someone has nothing to give, what will he do?” He said: “He should work with his hands and benefit himself and also give in charity (from what he earns).” The people further asked: “What if he cannot find even that?” He replied: “He should help the needy who appeal for help.” Then the people asked: “And if he cannot do that?” He replied: “Then he should do good deeds and keep away from evil deeds and this will be regarded as charitable deeds.” [Al-Bukhari]

19- Offering charity and establishing charitable projects treats the problem of poverty to which Islam specified solutions and included righteousness and doing good deeds in these solutions. It treats the envy of the poor to the rich so it protects society by the will of Allah The Almighty from the crimes of theft and revenge. The Prophet  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  warned his nation against the dangers of the behavior of the poor as he said: “A person in debt tells lies whenever he speaks and breaks promises whenever he makes (them).” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

20- For charity to be accepted and fulfilling of its conditions, it should be from lawfully earned money. Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {O you who have believed, spend from the good things which you have earned.} [Quran 2:267]. Charity is not accepted if it is ill gotten because the Prophet  [sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention )]  said: “Whoever earned money from a sin, so he maintained with it his ties of kinship or spent it in the Cause of Allah, then all this would be collected and he would be thrown with it into Hellfire.” [Abu Daawood]

It should be sincere for the Countenance of Allah The Almighty and not intended for showing off or seeking fame. He should direct his intention in charity to Allah The Exalted and never view it as great. Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {And do not confer favor to acquire more.} [Quran 74:6]