Obligatory Charity (Zakat)
As Submitters (Muslims) one of the religious duties set out in the Quran is the obligatory charity (Zakat). As the name implies, it is a charity that submitters are obligated to give to specified people “on the day of harvest” (6:141) or when they receive any “net income.” The importance of this practice can be seen in the Quranic verse where God states that, “…My mercy encompasses all things. However, I will specify it for those who … give the obligatory charity (Zakat)…” (7:156).
Zakat is a very important aspect of Submission (Islam) and must be carefully calculated and given away whenever we receive any income. The specified amount that must be set aside for zakat is 2.5% of the net income after government taxes have been deducted. No other expenses such as debts, mortgages or living expenses can be deducted before calculating the amount due for zakat.
As previously mentioned, zakat must be given to specified recipients and in a specified order, as dictated in the Quranic verse 2:215: “…The charity you give shall go to the parents, the relatives, the orphans, the poor, and the traveling alien.” If a person does not know any needy persons to give their zakat to, as an alternative they may give it to a charitable organization or mosque that will use it for the distinct purpose of helping the needy, otherwise it cannot be considered zakat.
He is the One who established gardens, trellised and untrellised, and palm trees, and crops with different tastes, and olives, and pomegranate ―fruits that are similar, yet dissimilar. Eat from their fruits, and give the due alms on the day of harvest,* and do not waste anything. He does not love the wasters.
- Quran 6:141
*6:141 Zakat charity is so important, the Most Merciful has restricted His mercy to those who give it (7:156). Yet, the corrupted Muslims have lost this most important commandment; they give Zakat only once a year. We see here that Zakat must be given away "On the day we receive income." The proportion that came to us through Abraham is 2.5% of our net income.
All that was asked of them was to worship GOD, devoting the religion absolutely to Him alone, observe the contact prayers (Salat), and give the obligatory charity (Zakat). Such is the perfect religion.
- Quran 98:5
For more information on Zakat and other religious duties in Submission, please see Appendix 15 of Quran: The Final Testament by Rashad Khalifa, Ph.d.
More verses about Obligatory Charity (Zakat)
You shall observe the Contact Prayers (Salat) and give the obligatory charity (Zakat), and bow down with those who bow down.
- Quran 2:43
You shall observe the Contact Prayers (Salat) and give the obligatory charity (Zakat). Any good you send forth on behalf of your souls, you will find it at GOD. GOD is seer of everything you do.
- Quran 2:110
Righteousness is not turning your faces towards the east or the west. Righteous are those who believe in GOD, the Last Day, the angels, the scripture, and the prophets; and they give the money, cheerfully, to the relatives, the orphans, the needy, the traveling alien, the beggars, and to free the slaves; and they observe the Contact Prayers (Salat) and give the obligatory charity (Zakat); and they keep their word whenever they make a promise; and they steadfastly persevere in the face of persecution, hardship, and war. These are the truthful; these are the righteous.
- Quran 2:177
Those who believe and lead a righteous life, and observe the Contact Prayers (Salat), and give the obligatory charity (Zakat), they receive their recompense from their Lord; they will have nothing to fear, nor will they grieve.
- Quran 2:277
Conditions for Staying Within God's Protection*
GOD had taken a covenant from the Children of Israel, and we raised among them twelve patriarchs. And GOD said, "I am with you, so long as you observe the Contact Prayers (Salat), give the obligatory charity (Zakat), and believe in My messengers and respect them, and continue to lend GOD a loan of righteousness. I will then remit your sins, and admit you into gardens with flowing streams. Anyone who disbelieves after this, has indeed strayed off the right path."
- Quran 5:12
The believing men and women are allies of one another. They advocate righteousness and forbid evil, they observe the Contact Prayers (Salat) and give the obligatory charity (Zakat), and they obey GOD and His messenger. These will be showered by GOD's mercy. GOD is Almighty, Most Wise.
- Quran 9:71
Successful indeed are the believers; who are reverent during their Contact Prayers (Salat). And they avoid vain talk. And they give their obligatory charity (Zakat). And they maintain their chastity.
- Quran 23:1-5