Distribution System for Charities (9:60 – 9:62)

Distribution System for Charities

[9:60] Charities shall go to the poor, the needy, the workers who collect them, the new converts, to free the slaves, to those burdened by sudden expenses, in the cause of GOD, and to the traveling alien. Such is GOD’s commandment. GOD is Omniscient, Most Wise.
[9:61] Some of them hurt the prophet by saying, “He is all ears!” Say, “It is better for you that he listens to you. He believes in GOD, and trusts the believers. He is a mercy for those among you who believe.” Those who hurt GOD’s messenger have incurred a painful retribution.
[9:62] They swear by GOD to you, to please you, when GOD and His messenger are more worthy of pleasing, if they are really believers.

One of the blessings of having the Quran translated in English is that punctuations provides clarity that could be misunderstood otherwise. In 9:60 it could be read without the “,” and we would not have the right understanding:

“…to those burdened by sudden expenses, in the cause of GOD” 

“…to those burdened by sudden expenses in the cause of GOD”

Why does money need to go to the new converts?

New converts can be abandoned by a lot of friends and family when they switch religions/beliefs.

What does it mean by traveling alien?

People who travel from outside of their home country is called an alien (i.e. immigrants)

How is 9:60 different than 2:215 for distribution of charity

Recipients of Charity

[2:215] They ask you about giving: say, “The charity you give shall go to the parents, the relatives, the orphans, the poor, and the traveling alien.” Any good you do, GOD is fully aware thereof.

2:215 is specifically about Zakat

The Obligatory Charity (Zakat) – Appendix 15

Zakat must be given away “on the day of harvest” (6:141). Whenever we receive “net income,” we must set aside 2.5% and give it to the specified recipients – the parents, relatives, orphans, the poor, and the traveling alien, in this order (2:215). The vital importance of Zakat is reflected in God’s law: “My mercy encompasses all things, but I will specify it for the righteous who give Zakat” (7:156).

Zakat must be carefully calculated and given away on a regular basis whenever we receive any income. Government taxes should be deducted, but not other expenses such as debts, mortgages, and living expenses. If one does not know needy persons, he or she may give the Zakat to a mosque or charitable organization with the distinct purpose of helping poor people. Charities given to mosques or hospitals or organizations cannot be considered Zakat.

What is the significance of Muhammad listening, and why is that better?

[49:7] And know that GOD’s messenger has come in your midst. Had he listened to you in many things, you would have made things difficult for yourselves. But GOD made you love faith and adorned it in your hearts, and He made you abhor disbelief, wickedness, and disobedience. These are the guided ones.

The power of listening | William Ury | TEDxSanDiego
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=saXfavo1OQo

9:62 distinguishes between Muhammad the man and the messenger, the hypocrites want to please the man and the believers want to please God.

Throughout chapter 9 the hypocrites swear to try to gain credibility:
9:42, 56, 62, 74, 95, 96, 107

The believers swear for serious matters
24:6 (adultery), 5:107, 21:57

[2:224] Do not subject GOD’s name to your casual swearing, that you may appear righteous, pious, or to attain credibility among the people. GOD is Hearer, Knower.

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