Alms are for the poor who are straitened for the Cause of God
Surah ‘Al-Baqarah (The Cow) – Chapter – 2)
Stage – 1, Verses – 272 & 273 of 286, Section – 37 of 40 (Part - 3)
In the name of God, the Beneficent, the Merciful
272. The guiding of them is not thy duty (O Muhammad), but Allah guideth whom He will. And whatsoever good thing ye spend, it is for yourselves. And ye spend not save in search of Allah’s Countenance. And whatsoever good thing ye spend, it will be repaid to you in full, and ye will not be wronged.
272. Laysa ‘alayka hudaa-hum wa laa-kinnAllaaha yahdi many-yashaaa’. Wa maa tun-fiquu minkhayrin- fali- ‘anfu-sikum wa maa tunfiquuna ‘illab-tigaaa-‘a wajHIllaah. Wa maa tunfiquu min khayriny-yuwaffaa ‘ilaykum wa ‘antum laa tuzla-muun.
Khayrin – (good thing), the word khayr is opposite to sharr. Every such thing is included in its comprehensive use, to which humankind supposes good, for instance; wisdom, morality, knowledge and wealth. The word khayrin has come at many places in the Holy Qur’an for wealth. As though, Islam does not say the wealth and property as bad and impure things. But It describes them as pleasant and good things. Therefore, It remembered them with the word khayrin. The evil is not in the wealth, but it exists in its unlawful earning and unlawful spending.
Hudaahum – (The guiding of them), hidaa-yat, Haa-dii and muh-ta-dii are from the same origin. This word of Holy Qur’an is a perfect word, which means ‘to find guidance, to go straight forward and to keep its footing’ (these all three things are included in the word “guidance”).
Yuwaffaa – (will be repaid in full), the origin of this word is “wafaa”, which means ‘to fill up, to complete, to make up, to carry out, to keep a promise, to reimburse’.
Once again, Allah Almighty proclaims in these verses that preaching is the duty of Prophet (grace, glory, blessings and peace be upon him) and His followers. To direct with urgency and making the people Muslims, are not their responsibilities. Therefore, they should keep up their work without thinking about the consequence of preaching. It comes out also from this discussion that, it is not necessary that we spend only for those people, whom we think that they will embrace Islam due to our wealth. Nevertheless, our only purpose should be pleasure and will of God Almighty in alms-giving and charity, and the individual who is needy; we should make up his necessities. There should be no distinction between idolater, infidel, believer and hypocrite. Surely, you will get reward, because you spend your wealth only for Allah’s Will and Pleasure. God Almighty has promised that it will be repaid to you in full, and you will not be wronged.
We should bear in mind properly that which wealth we shall spend and give someone, our aim should be to please Allah Almighty. Being separate from this way and relating it with any other name is unlawful.
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273. (Alms are) for the poor who are straitened for the Cause of Allah, who cannot travel in the land (for trade); the unthinking man accounteth them wealthy because of their abstaining (from begging). Thou shalt know them by their mark: They do not beg of men with importunity. And whatever good thing ye spend, lo! Allah Knoweth it.
273. Lil-fuqaraaa- ‘illaziina ‘uh-siruu fii Sabii-LIllaahi laa yas-tatii- ‘uuna zarban- fil- ‘arzi yah-sabuhumul-jaahilu ‘agniyaaa- ‘a minat-ta- ‘affuf. Ta’-rifuhum- bi-siimaa-hum. Laa yas- ‘aluu-nannaasa- ‘il-haafaa. Wa maa tunfiquu min khay-rin- fa- ‘innAllaaha bihii ‘Aliim.
‘Uh-siruu – (those who are straitened), there is much room in this word, that is to say; to be surrounded, whether it is with regard to the time or in consideration of body. Purports are those people, who are besieged in any deed of religion, and now they cannot earn daily food or allowance, as the religious warriors. Some Interpreters have inferred those individuals who are engaged in the religious teachings, and are attached as in acquiring science and knowledge that they cannot arrange for employment.
‘Agniyaaa- ‘a – (wealthy, the rich), this word has been composed from the word ‘ganaaa’ and its single is ganii, namely; those individuals who have wealth more than their necessities.
It has been indicated in this verse that real worthy of the alms and charity, are those people, who have been restricted from moving, eating and earning due to being closed in the Path of Allah Almighty. Moreover, they do not disclose their necessities before any person, as lovers (Razii Allahu anhum) of the last Messenger (grace, glory, blessings and peace be upon him), for example; companions of (‘As-haabi) Suffah had chosen company of The Messenger (grace, glory, blessings and peace be upon him). They used to keep up learning the teachings of the religion. Like this, some companions (Razii Allahu anhum) were busy in Jijad (Muhammadan religious war) against mischief-makers and seditious people. These pious servants (Razii Allahu anhum) did not use to beg from anyone. However, their necessities might be known from their appearance and features. We should help them today too, who are learning the teachings of the religion Islam and busy in religious war in the Path of Allah Almighty, and provide them provisions.