Why Interest is Haram? 10 Islamic Quotes on Interest or Riba
Islamic quotes on Interest: In the Quran and hadith, interest is referred to as Riba. Riba is an Arabic word that roughly translates to increasing or exceeding. But it is most commonly translated as usury or interest. It is basically the fee or charges one has to pay when returning loaned money.
In Islam, Riba is an exploitative means of increasing one’s wealth. This is because a person with surplus money lends it to someone in desperate need of it. The poor person has to agree to pay interest, which he can’t afford because it’s his only option.
Here we will discuss facts about interest in Islam with authentic quotes on why interest is Haram in Islam.
Why Interest is Haram?
Interest or Riba is forbidden in Islam as it goes against the guidelines of social justice and equality set in Islamic finance. Islamic Scholars have always been in unanimous agreement on the matter of interest. Whether its interest is received in a bank account or a loan for buying property or for education, as long as it includes interest, it’s forbidden.
Interest helps the rich get richer, and the poor get poorer. Giving out loans should be a charitable act, not an opportunity to exploit poor and needy people. Interest just reinforces the wealth gap and nothing good comes out of it.
Receiving and paying interest is a major sin in Islam. As believers, we should try our best to avoid any activities that may cause us to indulge in this sin.
Trading vs Interest, What’s the Difference?
In trade, people sell products or invest and in return gain a profit for their services. Trade by permissible means is not only allowed but encouraged in Islam. It gives a person the ability to earn money and be self-sufficient. Interest on the other hand is a means of earning passively. A person earns money without any real investment or trade.
In the verse mentioned above, Allah (SWT) clearly mentions that trade is permissible but interest isn’t. It also states that whosoever indulges in the practice of taking or giving interest will be punished in the hereafter. Thus, we should refrain from making excuses or saying that interest is the same as trade and instead pray to Allah to forgive us.
What to do if You’ve Taken Interest?
As humans, we are prone to making mistakes and sinning. But we should strive to do what’s right and make amends. If, for some reason, a person didn’t know that interest is haram and he took part in the practice, he should now, upon realizing that he sinned, pray to Allah (SWT) for forgiveness.
Here are some Duas to Ask Allah for Forgiveness.
From the verse above, we get to know that if anyone is taking or giving interest and has now been guided by Allah, he should give up the practice immediately. If a person continues to take interest despite knowing it’s not permissible, then doing so is a great sin. This is because they are knowingly disobeying Allah’s commands.
The Hadith above show that anyone who has anything to do with the act of taking and giving interest will be punished for it in the hereafter. Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessing upon Him), throughout his teachings, emphasized the evils of the financial system of interest brings and one should abstain from it.
As Muslims, we are instructed to stop sinful acts by our actions and words. Thus, being present in a meeting where interest is being taken and not doing anything about it is also a sin. It is better to walk away from such a place and acknowledge in your heart that those actions are wrong, even if you can’t physically take any action against them.
These Hadith on interest put into perspective how big of a deal taking interest is.
The following verse from Holy Quran again states that Allah (SWT) does not bless income based on interest.
A big misfortune of a usurer is that he does not place his trust in Allah. He does try to earn money lawfully and does pray to Allah (SWT) for “Barakat”. Instead, he relies on the interest he collects from his debtors. This act comes under shirk.
What Will be the Fate of a Usurer?
The sin of engaging in interest is far more severe than that of other sins. Islam considers interest to be one of the greatest sins and thus its punishment will also be very severe.
If a usurer doesn’t repent for his actions in this life he’ll be sent to hell for eternity along with the rest of the disbelievers. The following eye-opening Hadith states one such unfortunate fate and the punishment for interest in Islam.
And likewise, the following Quranic verse states the painful punishment for those involved in interest. May Allah guide us all to the straight path. Ameen
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. What is Riba?
Riba is an Arabic word that roughly translates to “interest”. In Islamic law, it is an exploitative means of increasing one’s wealth. Riba is strongly condemned in several qur’anic verses. There are also many hadith recorded regarding the matter of interest.
Q. What are the types of riba?
Scholars believe that there are two types of interest. The most common type is the charging of an additional increase on a loan of cash. This is called riba an-nasiya. The other is the unequal exchange of commodities, known as riba al-fadl.
Q. Are investments haram?
Investing in sources of interest-based income is forbidden in Islam. This includes investments in conventional bonds and other debt securities. However, investing in sources that do not include interest or any other impermissible thing is allowed. Allah knows best.
Q. Is mortgage haram?
Traditional mortgages are not permissible as they require the payment of interest, which is haram in Islam. However, Islamic mortgages that let you borrow money while following Islamic principles are allowed.
Q. Can I give interest money to the poor?
Interest money can be given as a general donation. As it is money acquired by impermissible means, it cannot be used to pay zakat or sadaqah. This is because when zakat and sadaqah are given, the person earns a reward for the deed. A reward cannot be expected for donating interest money as it is haram and should only be seen as a means of cleansing one’s wealth.