Tuesday 1 February 2022

Selected Verses from Qur'an: Establishment of Prayer and Giving Out Charity

Sparing and sharing one's time and money is perhaps the most difficult thing for a man to do. Allah directs His servants to take time out of heir busy life and offer prayer / salah five times a day. and then it also directs them to give out charity from the wealth Allah has provided to man so that those who are not blessed as much they are could also sustain their life honorable without having been asked.

But as I said, man is selfish in nature. He invokes Allah's mercy for health, and wealth all the time. But once he has everything, he starts counting his pennies and is always hesitant to give out charity in Allah's name so that poor could also live comfortably.  The following 31st verse of Surah 14. Ibrahim (Abraham) thus conveys Allah's caution to the believers through Prophet Muhammad ﷺ so that they are not questioned on the Day of Judgment and penalized. It would be the day when man will not be able to strike a bargain as he has been doing in his worldly life. It is being said that believers should be diligent in the prayer and in paying charity so that they are entrusted with what their brethren had showed dishonesty in:

قُلْ لِّـعِبَادِىَ الَّذِيۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا يُقِيۡمُوا الصَّلٰوةَ وَيُنۡفِقُوۡا مِمَّا رَزَقۡنٰهُمۡ سِرًّا وَّعَلَانِيَةً مِّنۡ قَبۡلِ اَنۡ يَّاۡتِىَ يَوۡمٌ لَّا بَيۡعٌ فِيۡهِ وَلَا خِلٰلٌ‏ 
(14:31) (O Prophet), tell those of My servants who believe that they should establish Prayer and spend out of what We have provided them with, both secretly and openly, before there arrives the Day when there will be no bargaining, nor any mutual befriending.
That is, "The believers should adopt an attitude of gratitude in contrast to the disbelievers (v. 29). The practical form their gratitude should take is that they should establish Salat and expend their wealth in the Way of Allah."  And "On that Day none shall be able to rescue himself either by ransom or by intercession."

Tafsir Ibn-Kathir:
The Command for Prayer and Charity - Allah orders His servants to obey Him, fulfill His rights and be kind to His creatures. He ordained the prayer, which affirms the worship of Allah alone, without partners, and to spend from the provisions that He has granted them, by paying the due Zakah, spending on relatives and being kind to all others. Establishing the prayer requires performing it on time, perfectly, preserving its act of bowing having humility during it, and preserving its prostrations. Allah has ordained spending from what He granted, in secret and public, so that the people save themselves, (before the coming of a Day), the Day of Resurrection, (on which there will be neither mutual bargaining nor befriending.) on which no ransom will be accepted from anyone, if he seeks to buy himself. 
Allah said in another Ayah, (So this Day no ransom shall be taken from you, nor of those who disbelieved.) [57:15]
Allah said here, (وَلاَ خِلَـلٌ nor befriending.) Ibn Jarir commented, "Allah says that on that Day, there will be no friendship between friends that might save those deserving punishment from it. Rather, on that Day, there will be fairness and justice.'' Qatadah said, "Allah knows that in this life, there is mutual bargaining and there are friendships which people benefit from. A man chooses his friends and the reasons behind befriending them; if it was for Allah's sake, their friendship should be maintained, but if it was for other than Allah, their friendship is bound to be cutoff.'' I say that the meaning of this, is that Allah the Exalted is declaring that on that Day, no mutual bargaining or ransom will avail anyone, even if he ransoms himself with the earth's fill of gold if he could find that amount! No friendship or intercession shall avail one if he meets Allah while a disbeliever. 

Allah the Exalted said:
(And fear the Day when no person shall avail another, nor shall compensation be accepted from him, nor shall intercession be of use to him, nor shall they be helped.)[2:123], and,
(O you believe! Spend of that with which We have provided for you, before a Day comes when there will be no bargaining, nor friendship, nor intercession. And it is the disbelievers who are the wrongdoers.) [2:254]
Muhammad Asad Explanation
As explained for the verse 3 of Surah 2. Al Baqarah (and are constant in prayer, and spend on others out of what We provide for them as sustenance;), Ar-rizq ("provision of sustenance") applies to all that may be of benefit to man, whether it be concrete (like food, property, offspring, etc.) or abstract (like knowledge, piety, etc.). The "spending on others" is mentioned here in one breath with God-consciousness and prayer because it is precisely in such selfless acts that true piety comes to its full fruition. It should be borne in mind that the verb anfaqa (lit., "he spent") is always used in the Qur'an to denote spending freely on, or as a gift to, others, whatever the motive may be.

Cf. 2:254 . According to the philologist Abu 'Ubaydah, as quoted by Razi, the expression bay' ("selling and buying" or "bargaining") denotes here the metaphorical "[giving and taking] ransom" which, as the Qur'an repeatedly stresses, will be inadmissible on the Day of Judgment (cf. 3:91 and the corresponding note [71], as well as 5:36 , 10:54 , 13:18 , 39:47 and {70:11-l5}) similarly, the denial of khilal - which Abu 'Ubaydah regards as synonymous, in this context, with makhalah ("mutual befriending") - expresses the impossibility of "ransom" through intercession on Judgment Day, for "now, indeed, you have come unto Us in a lonely state, even as We created you in the first instance" ( 6:94 ).

Yusuf Ali  Explanation
Putting ourselves back in the position in which the Muslim community found themselves in Makkah just before the Hijrat, we can imagine how much encouragement and consolation they needed from the preaching, the Faith, and the steadfast character of Al-Mustafa. Intolerant persecution was the order of the day; neither the life nor the property or reputation of the Muslims was safe. They are asked to find strength and tranquility in prayer and in helping each other according to their needs and resources.

Here, as elsewhere, "Sustenance" is to be taken in the literal as well as the metaphorical sense. There were many among the Muslims who were poor, or slaves, or depressed, because they were deprived of the means of livelihood on account of their Faith. They were to be fed, clothed, and sheltered, by those who had means. Charity was to be ordinarily secret, so as to cut out all show or parade, and perhaps also lest the enemy should dry up those sources by unprincipled violence; but there must be much that had to be open and organised, so that all the needy could know where to go to be relieved.

The great Day of Reckoning would be one on which all values would be changed. Wealth, as understood in this world, would no longer count. Should we not therefore use any wealth we have in this life, to give here and receive there? Bai includes all bargaining,-barter, purchase and sale, etc. In this world, where wealth has some value, let us spend it and get for ourselves "treasures in heaven." In the next life each man will stand on his merits and personal responsibility. One man cannot help another. Let us here help each other to become true and righteous, so that our personal account may be favourable there.

Qur'an Wiki Explanation:
God commands His Messenger to say to those who have attained to faith that they should express their gratitude to God by establishing regular prayer, for prayer is the most express form of gratitude to God. They should also spend in charity out of the sustenance God provides for them, and make such spending both in secret and in public. Secret charity protects the dignity of the taker and enhances the virtue of the giver. This ensures that charity does not become a source of pride and arrogance. Charitable spending in public serves to demonstrate obedience to God’s orders, and provides a good example to others in the community. Both ways are left to the discretion and sensitivities of every believer.

The believers are told to spend on others now so that their balance which is preserved for them increases through gains they make by charitable spending. This they have to do before a day comes when there is no longer any possibility for wealth to grow, or friendship to bring any benefit. What is of benefit to people is only the good works they have already done, for their reward is stored.

Please listen to explanation of the ayat by eminent Muslim scholar Nouman Ali Khan:
May Allah help us understand Qur'ān and help us to act upon the commandments of Allah contained therein. Aameen.

For more Selected Verses, please refer to our reference page: Selected Verses from the Qur'anYou may also refer to our Reference Pages for knowing more about Islam and Qur'ān.
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Reading the Qur'ān should be a daily obligation of a Muslim - Reading it with translation will make it meaningful. But reading its Exegesis / Tafsir will make you understand it fully.

An effort has been made to gather explanation / exegesis of the surahs of the Qur'ān from authentic sources and then present a least possible condensed explanation of the surah. In that the exegesis of the chapters of the Quran is mainly based on the "Tafhim al-Qur'an - The Meaning of the Qur'an" by one of the most enlightened scholars of the Muslim World Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi.  
In order to augment and add more explanation as already provided, additional input has been interjected from following sources: 
  • Towards Understanding the Quran
  • Tafsir Ibn Khatir
  • Muhammad Asad Translation
  • Javed Ahmad Ghamidi / Al Mawrid
  • Al-Quran, Yusuf Ali Translation
  • Verse by Verse Qur'an Study Circle
In addition the references of other sources which have been explored have also been given above. Those desirous of detailed explanations and tafsir (exegesis), may refer to these sites.

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