Zakat is one of the firve pillars of Islam. It is most important among those pillars after the Faith and the Prayer (Salat). It is most encouraged to give the zakat in the holy month of Ramadan. It has been mentioned so many times in Quran to give zakat. It is the obligations on Muslims so that the poor may get benefitted.
Zakat means purification and growth which means to purify one’s wealth and possessions by distributing a fix amount among the poor and needy.
Allah s.w.t says in Quran:
“And those who hoard up gold and silver and do not spend on them in the Way of Allah (i.e. by giving Zakat), give them the tidings of a painful punishment. This will be on the Day when those treasures (i.e. gold and silver) will be heated in the Fire of Hell and with it their foreheads, bodies and backs will be branded. (And it will be said to them): ‘This is the treasure that you hoarded for yourselves, so taste what you used to hoard.”
[Surah At-Tawbah: 34]
In another place it is said by Almightily Allah:
And let not those who hold back miserly from giving that which Allah has bestowed on them from His Bounty think that it is good for them. Nay, it will be worse for them. The things that they held back from giving will be tied to their necks like a collar on the Day of Recompense. And to Allah belongs the heritage of the heavens and the earth, and Allah is well-Aware of all that you do.”
[Surah Aali ‘Imraan: 180]
Benefits of giving Zakat:
Following are the benefits of giving zakat:
Zakat purifies the possessions and the spirituality of one who gives it. It creates a sense of self-discipline and shows your obedience to Allah s.w.t.
Makes you prosperous
By giving Zakat a person shows that he is not abiding by one of the pillars of Islam rather he is following the teachings of Allah. His obedience brings him the prosperity in the worldly life and in the life of hereafter.
It makes you closer to Allah
Giving Zakat brings you close to your God and increases your faith in Him. All of the acts of worship help you in the same way.
Allah will give reward to those who give Zakat
“Allah will wipe away (the reward) of usury and increase that of charity (i.e. Zakat).”
[Surah Al-Baqarah: 276]
The Prophet (pbuh) said:
“Whoever gives away charity the size of a date, which is earned lawfully, since Allah only accepts the good lawful things, Allah will indeed take it with His right Hand and cause it to grow for its owner, just as one of you raises up his colt, to the point that the charity will become like the size of a mountain.”
[Reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
Sins are wiped away
The Prophet (pbuh) said:
“Giving charity wipes away sins just as water extinguishes fire.”
The word charity (sadaqah) here refers to the Zakat as well as the supererogatory form of charity.