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.
The imam mentioned the 110th ayat of Sura Baqara in reference to this reminder. It is translated to say:
Establish prayer, and pay alms-tax. Whatever good you send forth for yourselves, you will ˹certainly˺ find ˹its reward˺ with Allah. Surely Allah is All-Seeing of what you do
And the imam also referenced the 103rd ayat of Sura At-Tauba which is translated to say:
Take from their wealth ˹O Prophet˺ charity to purify and bless them, and pray for them—surely your prayer is a source of comfort for them. And Allah is All-Hearing, All-Knowing.
Dear brothers and sisters, we can see from the ayat referenced that Allah SWT places a great reward on this act and therefore we should strive to make sure we aren’t neglectful in this act of worship.
Alongside this, the imam made a number of interesting observations on the mention of zakat in the Quran.
The first of these was that the mention of Zakat is around 30 times in the Quran but of these, almost of all them are next to the word for prayer, salat, around 27 times. This goes to demonstrate to the one who ponders over the words of Allah SWT, how much emphasis and importance He placed in Zakat as it is mentioned alongside the act of prayer itself.
Another point to note is that the Quran mentions that Zakat is important for many of the social constructs we are blessed with. From the blessing of brotherhood that our Ummah enjoys to the impact it has on the community, Zakat is more than just an individual act of worship, it’s benefit impacts far and wide and offers blessings on our dunya as well as the reward we will receive from Allah SWT in the next life.
In fact, the very masjids we pray in are directly impacted from this act of worship. The imam reminded us of this point by referencing the 18th ayat of Sura At-Tauba which is translated to say:
The mosques of Allah should only be maintained by those who believe in Allah and the Last Day, establish prayer, pay alms-tax, and fear none but Allah. It is right to hope that they will be among the ˹truly˺ guided.
Dear brothers and sisters, the act of Zakat is not just for us and it’s not just for the next life. It’s impact is significant and widespread in the world in which we currently reside.
This reminder concludes with 5 individual benefits of the act of Zakat.
- It is a way of cleaning and purifying our income and ourselves.
- It makes us closer to one another, our community, our brotherhood and our humanity.
- It is a reason for us to enter Paradise
- It is a source of our success in this life also. This is directly instructed to us in Sura Muminoon which has the first 4 ayats translated to say:
Successful indeed are the believers: those who humble themselves in prayer; those who avoid idle talk; those who pay zakat.
- It separates the believers from the hypocrites.
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.