Islam and the Quran

Were the older communities ordered to give tax (zakat) like we are?

Question: You say that fasting, praying, sacrificing and pilgrimage were obligatory to older communities too. What about tax? If it was too, obligatory to the older communities, what are your proofs?

Allah the Almighty says:

“He has prescribed for you the religion which He enjoined upon Noah, and which We revealed to you, and which We enjoined upon Abraham and Moses and Jesus.” (Ash-Shura/ The Consultation 42:13)

This verse show that the main pillars in our religion like prayers, fasting, giving tax (zakat) and the pilgrimage were also included in other religions.

There are a lot of verses that show giving tax was ordered to older communities just like it was ordered to us. One of them; after mentioning the prophets Abraham, Lot, Isaac and Jacob, goes like this:

“And We made them into leaders to guide people in accordance with Our command, and We inspired them to good works, and to establish prayers and to give the tax (zakat). They worshipped Us alone.” (Al-Anbiya/ The Prophets 21:73)

An example from chapter Mary:

“Remember Ishmael in the Book. He was ever true to his promise, and was a Messenger, and a Prophet. He enjoined his household the prayers and the tax (zakat); and his Lord was well pleased with him.” (Maryam/ Mary 19:54-55)

These verses show what was actually ordered to Jews and Christians:

“Yet all that they had been commanded was to serve Allah with utter sincerity and devoting themselves exclusively to Him, and to establish the prayers and to pay the tax (zakat). That is the true religion.” (Al-Bayyina/ The Proof 98:5)

“Once We had made a solemn covenant with the children of Israel saying: Worship none but Allah; Be good to your parents, to your relatives, to the orphans and to the helpless; speak aright with the people; offer the prayers and pay the tax (zakat). But with the exception of a few, you all slid back from it and are paying no heed to it even now.” (Al-Baqara/ The Cow 2:83)

“Surely Allah took a solemn covenant from the Children of Israel, and We raised up from them twelve of their leaders, and Allah said: ‘Behold, I am with you; if you establish the prayers, pay the tax (zakat), believe in My Prophets and help them, and lend Allah a good loan, I will certainly enshroud your evil deeds, and will surely cause you to enter the Gardens beneath which the rivers flow. Whoever of you conceals thereafter surely goes astray from the right path.” (Al-Maida/ The Feast 5:12)

One last example can be given from the words of Jesus:

“(Jesus) said: Indeed I am a servant of Allah. He has granted me the book and made me a prophet.” (Maryam/ Mary 19:30)

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