3 June 2005 / 25 Rabiul Akhir 1426
Striving for Halal Sources of Income
My brothers in Islam,
I would like to remind myself, and my dear brothers, to constantly have taqwa to Allah s.w.t. We can do this by following what Islam has taught us, be doing all that Allah has commanded us to do, and avoiding everything that He has forbidden.
Islam teaches us to work with diligence and to give our best in everything that we do. As an exemplary ummah, we should strive to give our best, to work hard to produce good results. The question is: What constitutes a commendable working attitude?
Insya Allah, today’s’ khutbah will discuss on the Islamic concept on the best way to earn our living.
Allah says in surah Al-Baqarah, ayat 198:
Which means: There is no sin on you if you seek the Bounty of your Lord.
This verse clearly tells us to seek Allah’s bounty that awaits those who worked hard for. For Allah s.w.t has made this Earth full of sustenance for His servants. Allah s.w.t has guarantee that everyone will receive his due share or rizq, or sustenance from Allah.
So Allah forbids us from being idle, and just hoping others for donations or assistance. Instead, Allah s.w.t commands us to go out and work. Earn an honest living, to sustain ourselves and our families. For everyone will receive what he strives for. The measure of things he will receive will depend on how much effort he exert to achieve it. Allah is Most Just. If one works hard, Allah will give him the justifiable rewards for his commendable efforts. On the other hand, if one is being lazy, Allah will not give him the same rewards that Allah gives to those who work hard.
Allah says in surah An-Najm, ayat 39:
Which means: And that man can have nothing but what he does (good or bad).
My brothers in Islam,
We all know that Allah commands us to earn our living from Halal sources. This is stated in many verses in Al-Quran, among them, the verse 114 in Surah An-Nahl:
Which means: So eat of the lawful and good food which Allâh has provided for you. And be grateful for the Graces of Allâh, if it is He Whom you worship.
Thus, we must ensure that our sources of income are Halal. But how to ensure that they are Halal?
The answer, is to ensure out sources of income do not contain elements that Allah has forbidden.
Allah has forbidden all things that will bring harm or destroy the our spiritual self, our physical self, our mind, our wealth and our family lineage.
On this ground, everything that destroys or harms our wealth and our mind is Haram. And everything that relates to those Haram things, is also considered as Haram. Such as assisting companies that deals with Haram things.
In order to ensure that our sources of income are Halal, we need to sit down and do some self check. Does our income come from Halal sources? Do we want our children to grow up on foods that come from Haram sources? When Rasulullah s.a.w has said in a hadith narrated by Imam Tirmizi:
Which means: There is no benefit for flesh that grew from Haram sources, except that Hell is a better place for that flesh.
So let us ensure that our the flesh that grows on our body, and on our children’s bodies does not come from Haram sources.
My brothers in Islam,
Allah forbids us from deriving our sources of income from games of chance such gambling, betting and such. This is because the money that we will earn from such sources does not come from our own sweat and toil. But on factors that are beyond our control, factors that are based on chances and fortunes. Factors that will bring about destruction to our wealth and family ties.
Halal sources are those that came from our own efforts. Not from relying on chances. In this respect, Rasulullah s.a.w. said in a hadith narrated by Imam Bukhari:
Which means: There is no food that is better for one to eat other than what he earned from his own hand.
That is why we can see that every prophet worked for their living. They did not rely on donations from other people. The Prophet Muhammad s.a.w himself has camels and sheep for his livelihood. He himself milked his own sheep. He did not rely on others to support him. And he is the greatest Prophet. He is Allah’s selected servant. If he did not work at all, that will not be a problem for him. For Allah will provide everything that he wants. But our Prophet Muhammad s.a.w worked with his two hands. Why? It is an example to the rest of us so that we will likewise earn our living, and not just rely on assistance from others or from games of chances.
We should never think that we are not able to find Halal source of income or that we will forever be poor if we do not indulge in income that is forbidden by Allah. Allah s.w.t has promised us our rizq, our sustenance, according to our needs.
Of course, everything is in Allah’s knowledge. The amount of rizq that we will receive from Allah is determined by Him, from his infinite knowledge on our capabilities and what we will do in the future.
But we do not know how much is that. Only Allah knows. So we must always strive harder to earn our living from Halal sources. We must never sit down and sigh that nothing we do can change our bad luck, our poverty. For that will bring about Allah’s anger.
We need to do only three things: to plan, to strive and to seek Allah’s help.
We make careful planning to find Halal sources of income. And we work hard for it. Give out best. And we pray to Allah, asking Him to grant us continued Halal income, and to bless it. Insya Allah, the food that we eat, that we put on our table, is Halal and blessed by Allah. For there is nothing greater than Allah’s blessing.
Insya Allah, next week’s khutbah will discuss further on one source of Haram income that is quite pervasive in these days.