How is sadaqah given from the things that are loved?

Details of the Question

Is it an appropriate deed to buy something, to use it for a while, to give it to a person who needs it and then to buy something new for yourself? Is it still regarded as sadaqah?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

To give one’s old things away as sadaqh to the needy people is regarded as sadaqah. However, it is a superior sadaqah for a person to give away something that he likes.

If a person gives something that he likes away for Allah, he attains the level of "birr" (righteousness). The following is stated in a verse:  

"By no means shall ye attain righteousness unless ye give (freely) of that which ye love; and whatever ye give, Allah knoweth it well." (Aal-i Imran, 3/92).

When this verse was sent down, Abu Talha wanted to give away "Birha" orchard, which he liked the best. The Prophet (pbuh) advised him to give it away to "his close relatives and cousins." Thereupon, he did so. (Bukhari, Zakat, 44, Wasaya, 17, 26; Muslim Zakat, 43; Ahmed b. Hanbal, III/141, 256). Hz. Umar gave away the valuable land that he received as booty after the battle of Khaybar. (Ibn Kathir, Mukhtasaru Tafsir, Beirut 1981, I/299)

Zayd b. Haritha told the Prophet (pbuh) that he would give away his famous horse called "Sayl" and the Prophet (pbuh) gave it to Usama b. Zayd. Hasan al-Basri states the following:

"If a person gives away only one of the dates that he likes, he attains "birr" mentioned in the verse."

Umar b. Abdulaziz gave away sweets to the poor a lot; when people asked him why he did so, he said, because I like sweets the best.

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