Sadaqatul/Zakatul Fitr and the Intent of Laylatul Qadr, By Murtadha Gusau
Servants of Allah! Sadaqatul Fitr is compulsory upon all those who fasted as well as those who did not fast for some reason or the other. And the Sadaqatul Fitr can only be paid to “the poor”, who are the ones entitled to accept Zakah…
In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Verily, all good praises are for Allah, we seek His help and His forgiveness. We seek refuge with Allah from the evil of our own souls and from our bad deeds. Whomsoever Allah guides will never be led astray, and whomsoever Allah leaves astray no one can guide. I bear witness that there is no god but Allah, He is alone without any partner, and I bear witness that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger (Pbuh).
“O you who believe! Fear Allah as He should be feared, and die not except in a state of Islam (as Muslims) with complete submission to Allah.” [Surah Ali Imran, 3:102]
“O mankind! Be dutiful to your Lord, Who created you from a single person, and from him He created his wife, and from them both He created many men and women, and fear Allah through Whom you demand your mutual (rights), and (do not cut the relations of) the wombs (kinship) Surely, Allah is Ever an All-Watcher over you).” [Surah al-Nisa’, 4:1]
“O you who believe! Keep your duty to Allah and fear Him, and speak (always) the truth. He will direct you to do righteous good deeds and will forgive you your sins. And whosoever obeys Allah and His Messenger (Pbuh) he has indeed achieved a great achievement (i.e. he will be saved from the Hellfire and made to enter Paradise).” [Surah al-Ahzab, 33:70-71]
As to what proceeds:
Verily the best of speech is the Book of Allah, and the best of guidance is the guidance of Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh). The worst of affairs are the newly-invented affairs in the religion and every newly invented affair in the religion is an innovation and every innovation is misguidance and all misguidance is in the hellfire.
As to what proceeds:
Servants of Allah! Zakat al-Fitr or Sadaqat al-Fitr is charity given to the poor at the end of the fasting in the Islamic noble month of Ramadan. The Arabic word Fitr means the same as iftar, breaking a fast, and it comes from the same root word as Futur which means breakfast.
Imam Ibn Qudamah (Rahimahullah) says in his book Umdat fil Fiqh:
“Zakat Al-Fitr (charity given at the end of Ramadan) is an obligation upon every Muslim who owns more than the essential food he needs for himself and his dependents, to be given on the eve and the day of Eid. The amount of charity is one Sa’i (about 3 liters) of wheat or barley or their flour. It can also be paid in crushed form or in dates or raisins. However, if he cannot find this, he should give any kind of food he eats that will measure equally. Whoever must pay charity for himself must also pay it for his dependents if he owns enough on the day before Eid to pay for them. If a person’s provision is the responsibility of a group of people, such as a shared servant or someone in difficulty who is a relative of a group, then his charity is obligatory upon them all in accordance with their share of responsibility for his provision. It is preferable to pay the charity on the day of Eid before the prayer. It is not permissible to delay its payment until after the day of Eid, but it is permissible to pay it a day or two in advance. It is permissible to give charity to one person that which is obligatory upon a group, and also to give charity to a group that which is obligatory upon one person.”
Respected Brothers and Sisters! Fitr means to break fast or to refrain from fasting. Hence the Eid after the fasts of Ramadan is called Eid-ul- Fitr, as it is the day of rejoicing after the completion of fasting.
On this occasion of happiness, as a sign of gratitude one has to give a specific amount in alms, which is called Sadaqatul Fitr or Zakatul Fitr. To purify and obtain complete blessings for the fasts of Ramadan Mubarak one has to give Sadaqatul Fitr.
It is reported from Ibn Abbas (RA) that:
“Messenger of Allah (Pbuh) made charity of Fitr compulsory as a purification of fasts from useless talks and vile discourses and also as food to the poor.” (Abu Dawud).
Thus it is wajib (compulsory) to give Sadaqatul Fitr to purify one’s fast. The true object in giving Sadaqatul-fitr on this happy occasion, is also to assist the poor and needy, so that, they may rejoice with the more fortunate.
In a narration of Tirmidhi, it is reported that the Messenger of Allah (Pbuh) sent a proclaimer through the lanes of Makkah to proclaim:
“Beware, charity of Fitr is compulsory on every Muslim, male or female, free or slave, young or old two muds [measures] of wheat, or its equivalent, or one Sa’i from food crops.”
It is apparent from this Hadith that Sadaqatul Fitr is wajib (compulsory) on every Muslim. A person should pay Sadaqatul Fitr on behalf of his family if they own no wealth. It is wajib to pay Sadaqatul Fitr, whether one fasts or not.
The time of Sadaqa becomes wajib on the day of Eid when the dawn breaks. If a person dies before Subh Sadiq [dawn], no sadaqatul fitr will be paid from his wealth, but if a child is born before dawn, it shall be paid on behalf of that child. It is permissible to pay Sadaqatul Fitr during the month of Ramadan, though it is advisable to pay on the day of Eid before the Eid Prayer. It will remain due to him whatever time has passed.
To distribute a specific type of food, barley, dates etc, on the day of Eid ul Fitr is wajib (compulsory). This giving of alms to the poor and needy on this auspicious day is called Sadaqatul Fitr as mentioned above. The Messenger of Allah (Pbuh) instructed the giving of Sadaqatul Fitr, in the same year fasting of Ramadan was made compulsory. This was in the second year after Hijrah. The reasons for giving Sadaqatul Fitr are:
(1) To give Sadaqatul Fitr in lieu of the acceptance of one’s fasting;
(2) To thank Allah Ta’ala, for bestowing on us the strength to fast during the month of Ramadan;
(3) To purify one’s fast and obtain the complete blessings of fasting;
(4) To celebrate the completion of fasting;
(5) To demonstrate greatness of the day of Eid;
(6) To assists the poor in joining the atmosphere of Eid.
Therefore, my people! Sadaqatul Fitr is compulsory charity which becomes payable on the occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr.
Sadaqatul Fitr is compulsory upon all Muslims, male, female and children, who on the Day of Eid-ul-Fitr are owners of certain amounts of food.
Zakatul Fitr becomes wajib when the Day of Fitr dawns with the commencement of Fajr time. Therefore, if someone died before entry of Fajr on the Day of Eid, Sadaqatul Fitr will not be paid out of his (the deceased’s) estate, since this Zakatul Fitr is not wajib on him. And, if a child is born before the rising of Fajr, Zakatul Fitr will be paid on his behalf. If the child is born after the entry of Fajr (on the Day of Eid), Zakatul Fitr is not wajib on his behalf.
Brothers and Sisters! The father has to pay the Sadaqatul Fitr on behalf of his underage children, i.e. those who have not attained the age of puberty.
According to some jurists (fuqaha), it is not obligatory upon the husband to pay Sadaqatul Fitr on behalf of his wife. If she is the owner of the wealth and the husband doesn’t have, she shall have to pay her own Sadaqatul Fitr.
If a minor is the owner of wealth to the amount of Nisab, then payment of Sadaqatul Fitr on behalf of the minor could be made from out of his (minor’s) wealth.
The Sadaqatul Fitr should preferably be paid before the Eid Prayer.
It is not permissible to delay the payment of Sadaqatul Fitr later than the Day of Eid. However, if it was not paid on the Day of Eid or before, the obligation remains and the Sadaqatul Fitr will have to be paid.
According to some jurists (fuqaha), it is permissible to pay the Sadaqatul Fitr in advance at any time during the month of Ramadan. Some even said the Sadaqatul Fitr could be paid even before Ramadan.
Servants of Allah! Sadaqatul Fitr is compulsory upon all those who fasted as well as those who did not fast for some reason or the other. And the Sadaqatul Fitr can only be paid to “the poor”, who are the ones entitled to accept Zakah (as some jurists mentioned).
Sadaqatul Fitr cannot be utilised for any charitable purpose other than to give to the poor. Therefore, if Sadaqatul Fitr monies are accumulated and then spent on some other charitable cause, the Sadaqatul Fitr obligation of the fitr payers will not be discharged.
The Messenger of Allah (Pbuh) said:
“The fast remains suspended between Heaven and Earth until the Sadaqatul Fitr is paid (If the Hadith is authentic).”
This Hadith of the Prophet illustrates the importance of the Sadaqatul Fitr and its direct bearing on the acceptance of our fasting. The fast is only presented for acceptance by Allah Ta’ala when the obligation of Sadaqatul Fitr is correctly discharged. The Muslim public should therefore be very scrupulous when effecting payment of the Sadaqatul Fitr. If the Sadaqatul Fitr is misused or wrongly distributed by the representatives of the public, the public will still be responsible for its fulfilment.
Dear Brothers and Sisters! Also know that the intent of Laylatul Qadr is not praying a lot, indeed the Messenger of Allah (Pbuh) did not increase on eleven units (Rak’ahs) in Ramadan or other than it.
The intent of when the Messenger of Allah (Pbuh) would tighten his waist wrapper during the last ten nights is not praying a lot, but the intent is al-I’tikaf as was the situation of the Prophet (Pbuh) mentioned in his Sirah. The intent is not a specific ritual which is done in this night! No, this is not the intent. Rather the intent is for the slave of Allah to prepare and spend this night in supplication (Du’a) and Zikr (remembrance of Allah). Do you not see in the hadith which is collected by Tirmidhi number 3,513. From Aisha (RA), who said:
“I said O Messenger of Allah what if I knew what night the night of Laylatul Qadr was, then what should I say on that night?’ He said: say Allahummah Innaka Afuwwun, tuhibbu al Afwa, Fa’afu anni. (Meaning): O Allah, indeed You pardon and You love pardoning so pardon me.” (Tirmidhi said: this hadith is Hasan Sahih).
Indeed the Messenger of Allah (Pbuh) did not teach her to pray a lot nor to make lots of Du’a or to perform a specific ritual of worship, rather he taught her this Du’a.
In al-Muwatta of Imam Malik in the book of al-I’tikaf, the chapter of what is mentioned about Laylatul Qadr: From Imam Malik that it reached him that Sa’id bin Musayyib used to say:
“Whoever attended the Isha’ prayer on Laylatul Qadr then he has taken his portion of it.”
I ask Allah to give us the ability to restrain our desires and to willingly submit ourselves to His will.
I ask Allah to assist us in living by the Quran and Sunnah. I pray that He lets us recognise the truth for what it is and helps us to follow it, and that He lets us see falsehood for what it is and helps us to avoid it.
O Allah! Guide us and protect us from the causes of ignorance and destruction! Save us from the defects of ourselves! Cause the last of our deeds to be the best and most righteous! And forgive all of us. Ameen.
My respected people! Anything good I have said in my today’s Khutbah (Sermon) is from Allah the Almighty, and any mistakes are my own and we seek refuge in Allah from giving wrong advice and from all forms of calamities and fitnah. And I ask Allah’s forgiveness if I stepped beyond bounds in anything I said or I do.
May Allah be praised; and may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon His Messenger Muhammad (Pbuh) and upon his family and Companions.
With this I conclude my Khutbah (Sermon) and ask Allah, the Almighty and the sublime, to forgive all of our sins. So seek his forgiveness, He is all forgiving Most Merciful.
This Jumu’ah Khutbah (Friday Sermon) was prepared for delivery today, Friday, Ramadan 21, 1438 A.H. (June 16, 2017), By Imam Murtadha Muhammad Gusau, the Chief Imam of Nagazi-Uvete Jumu’ah and Alhaji Abdurrahman Okene’s Mosques, Okene Kogi State Nigeria. He can be reached through: +2348038289761.