270. Whatever charity you give, or a pledge you fulfill, God knows it. The wrongdoers have no helpers.
271. If you give charity openly, that is good. But if you keep it secret, and give it to the needy in private, that is better for you. It will atone for some of your misdeeds. God is cognizant of what you do.
272. Their guidance is not your responsibility, but God guides whom He wills. Any charity you give is for your own good. Any charity you give shall be for the sake of God. Any charity you give will be repaid to you in full, and you will not be wronged.
273. It is for the poor; those who are restrained in the way of God, and unable to travel in the land. The unaware would think them rich, due to their dignity. You will recognize them by their features. They do not ask from people insistently. Whatever charity you give, God is aware of it.
274. Those who spend their wealth by night and day, privately and publicly, will receive their reward from their Lord. They have nothing to fear, nor shall they grieve.
275. Those who swallow usury will not rise, except as someone driven mad by Satan’s touch. That is because they say, “Commerce is like usury.” But God has permitted commerce, and has forbidden usury. Whoever, on receiving advice from his Lord, refrains, may keep his past earnings, and his case rests with God. But whoever resumes-these are the dwellers of the Fire, wherein they will abide forever.
276. God condemns usury, and He blesses charities. God does not love any sinful ingrate.
277. Those who believe, and do good deeds, and pray regularly, and give charity-they will have their reward with their Lord; they will have no fear, nor shall they grieve.
278. O you who believe! Fear God, and forgo what remains of usury, if you are believers.
279. If you do not, then take notice of a war by God and His Messenger. But if you repent, you may keep your capital, neither wronging, nor being wronged.
280. But if he is in hardship, then deferment until a time of ease. But to remit it as charity is better for you, if you only knew.
Muhammad is explained more about just how much importance for charity is on earth. There are people who have been oppressed by those in power and still remain so today. We know this by looking around at the world. Some people in charge collect large taxes on the middle and poor citizens, and this money is used in ways to line their own pockets. It is BEST to give to others because on the earth we have corrupted souls who take from others, and so Gabriel is explaining that if someone has the knowledge and faith to believe in God, then they need to also help the others that they see being taken advantage of.
There is a way to tell if someone is truly in need or not. It is the people that seem to be ok in the land. Unable to move from their land and they don’t constantly ask for help. Some people unaware may see this and think they are fine, but what the Angel is explaining is that, these are the people that need the most help. They are not lying or happy. They are just so stuck in this position that need outside help from others. And God calls you to do His Will on earth, by helping his people.
Anyone who constantly gives to others is being seen by God. The system of interest that was developed before Muhammad’s birth has been used as a way to keep people in debt. Usury is credit with interest. A leader or wealthy person would loan someone money, but then add on interest so that he could then make more back. The problem with this system as we see in today’s world even, is that it creates more hardship for the person who needed to borrow money in the first place! This does not truly help anyone. It may temporarily, but what happens is the person becomes even more in debt. Those who have instituted this horrible cycle of debt, are the world bankers in ancient times and today. They will be judged for their actions.
The United States needed to borrow money from the Central Bankers in the 1900s, and today we are STILL in debt as a country because of the high interest on the payback.
Commerce and trade is a good economy system that is fair and just. Muhammad is being told that this is good for the people, but the usury system is forbidden. It is better to loan or give money to those who need it at the time, then try to make more money from them later.
Muhammad is then told to tell the people that is using usury as a form of commerce that if they do not see the Signs from God that this is not good for them to be doing, then they are lost by their own doing. If they repent and start to give up the money and wealth they have acquired with the interest of people, then it is seen by God as well. And as we know God is Merciful and Just.
An artist’s rendition of Jesus flipping over the tables of gold