Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
A friend of mine is thinking of taking out a loan (involving Riba) to go on Hajj next year (2004). Is this permissible?
In the Name of Allah, Most Merciful and Compassionate. All praise is to Allah, Lord of the Worlds. And the blessings and peace of Allah be upon His Chosen Messenger, the Prophet Muhammad, his family, companions, and followers.
Allah Most High said in the Qur’an,
“Those who swallow usury cannot rise up save as he arises whom the devil has prostrated by (his) touch. That is because they say: Trade is just like usury; whereas Allah permitted trading and forbidden usury. He unto whom an admonition from his Lord comes, and (he) refrains (in obedience thereto), he shall keep (the profits of) that which is past, and his affair (henceforth) is with Allah. As for him who returns (to usury) – Such are rightful owners of the Fire. They will abide therein.
Allah has blighted usury and made charity fruitful. Allah loves not the impious and guilty.
Lo! those who believe and do good works and establish worship and pay the poor -due, their reward is with their Lord and there shall no fear come upon them either shall they grieve.
O ye who believe! Observe your duty to Allah, and give up what remains (due to you) from usury, if ye are (in truth) believers.
And if ye do not, then be warned of war (against you) from Allah and His Messenger. And if ye repent, then ye have your principal (without interest). Wrong not, and ye shall not be wronged.” [Qur’an, 2.275-279]
Riba (usury), such as bank interest, is a major sin and is something against which Allah and His Messenger have declared war. Anyone who tries to fight the Creator of the Universe is a loser.
If one does not have the money to perform Hajj, it is not obligatory for one to go. One should wait and save.
The scholars say, “Allah is not worshipped through sin.” Worship performed through sinful means is of little or no benefit, coupled with the sin involved, which is one of the major sins in Islam.
Abu Hurayra (Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) said,
“O people! Allah is Good and only accepts the good. Allah commands the believers as He commanded the Messengers. Allah Most High says, ‘O Messengers! Eat of the good and act righteously,’ [Qur’an, 23.52] and the He Most High said, ‘O you who believe! Eat of the good things which We have provided for you.'” [Qur’an, 2.172]
Then he (Allah bless him & give him peace) mentioned a man on a long journey, dishevelled and dusty. He stretches his hands to Heaven saying , ‘O Lord! O Lord!’Yet his food is unlawful. His drink is unlawful. His clothing is unlawful., His has been sustained by the unlawful. How, then, would he be answered?” [Muslim]
And Allah alone gives success.