Skip to content

Is Saving Money A Sin Or Haram? 8 Things To Consider

Nearly 85% of the world follow a religion, and to us, “sin” is something we want to stay away from to demonstrate obedience and follow our divine guidance.

Today’s question is whether saving money is considered a sin or not in the eyes of religions, so that we can avoid sinning while saving money.

Christianity and Islam, the two dominant religions globally, say that saving money has white and dark sides. You can be saving, and it will be considered a sin in 5 situations, and you can be saving, and it will be considered a good dead in 3 situations.

This is where financial wellbeing meets spiritual wellbeing and prove yet again, that wellbeing dimensions are in sync with one another, and that’s why you should work on your wellbeing as a whole.

Is Saving Money A Sin Or Haram? 8 Things To Consider

What is sin in Christianity and Islam?

Christianity sees sin as disobeying or despising the Christian biblical rules of God. [1]

Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness. (1 John 3:4) [2]

The consequence of sinning is falling short of God’s glory.

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (Romans 3:23 )[3].

All sins can be forgiven in Christianity through redemption.

Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life.( John 5:24) [4]

Islam also sees a sin as anything that goes against the orders of Allah (God) and his prophet Mohamed (may peace be upon him). It’s an act not a state, so it’s more of “you did a sin” rather than “you are sinful”. [5]

whoever disobeys Allah and His Messenger has clearly gone ˹far˺ astray.(Al-Ahzab 33:36) [6]

Consequences of doing something that is Haram (sin) in Islam, is an added weight to your wrong deeds increasing the chances of being punished while living or in the afterlife.

But whoever disobeys Allah and His Messenger and exceeds their limits will be cast into Hell, to stay there forever. And they will suffer a humiliating punishment. (Al-Nisa 4:14) [7]

On the same time, Islam teaches that Allah’s forgiveness and mercy overshadows and outweigh his wrath, and that your sins can not only be wiped out clean, but also be transformed into good deeds, once you genuinely decide to stop doing them and repent to Allah (God).

Surely good deeds wipe out evil deeds. That is a reminder for the mindful. (Hud 11:114) [8]

When saving is a sin or Haram

Christianity and Islam, as well as the remainder of religions, identify saving money as a sin in the following 5 situations:

1- Saving to buy harmful things

Saving is bad when you’re doing it to buy things that can harm yourself or others including:

  • Weapons to hurt other people even if they truly are bullying
  • Unlicensed medications
  • Drugs like cocaine, cannabis, ecstasy, heroin, and others non medically licensed drugs.
  • Purchasing a subscription for illegal sites like porn, racism, etc.

2- Saving on the expense of urgent family needs

Saving money in the expense of providing the necessities for your family is forbidden. Whether you are extremely anxious about the future or saving money just for the sake of having more of it.

You need to save money to prepare for the future while providing all current necessities that your family need “now”.

3- Saving on the expense of helping others

If you’re saving the money needed to help a friend in trouble, then that’s a sin you need to stay away from. Even if it’s for a complete stranger.

Religions teach that money should be used in serving humanity and making this world a better one. That’s why you shouldn’t be afraid to deduct from your saving to help someone out.

Also, what religions tell us is that when trade with God or Allah, you never lose as you can’t out give God.

4- When you’re not paying your Zakah

Islam mandates that everyone donates a small percentage, 2.5%, of wealth that had been in one’s possession for a year, so that it goes to supporting others in need trying to provide equity.

When Muslims don’t give Zakah and save it for themselves, they will be sinning. It’s there for a reason and it’s an order from Allah, so disobeying him is an evil dead added to that part of the scale.

5- Overly fearful from the future

While preparing for the worst future scenario is needed, turning it into an obsession or anxiety is not something taught in the Bible or Quran.

Both emphasized the importance of believing and trusting in God and Allah, and that he will be there for you.

So no matter how bad you think your future is going to look like, you still need to save moderately and spend or invest the rest.

When saving isn’t a sin or Haram

Saving money can be accepted, or even considered a good dead in the following 3 situations according to the Bible and Quran:

1- Saving money to prepare for the future

Saving to prepare for the future is normal. It’s something religions encourage us to do to be in a better situation than the one we are in now.

It has to be done with caution and to make sure that it doesn’t come on the expense of providing for the now or to stand against helping others.

Saving money for the future includes saving for education, retirement, safety, and security

1.1 Education

Education is a must to do according to all religions. We all must continue to learn in order to serve better and improve our world.

That’s why there’s nothing wrong with saving for education for yourself or your children.

On the contrary, it’s a good dead that you’re trying to be a better person or helping your kids get the proper education to support them in life.

1.2 Retirement

Retirement is a legal act of leaving your day job, and it’s not the end of the road. Serving God continue even after retirement, and you won’t be able to do it without having money to cover your necessities.

When you are actively working, you have a continuous and decent amount of money each month. When you retire, you receive fraction of that amount while living almost the same lifestyle.

That’s why it makes sense to save money as early as possible for the times when you’ll have less

1.3 Safety and security of yourself

You are fine  now, but tomorrow you might not be. That’s why saving money to prepare for tomorrow’s medical or financial crisis is extremely important as advised in religions.

“Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise. Without having any chief, officer, or ruler, she prepares her bread in summer and gathers her food in harvest.” Proverbs 6:6-8 ESV
The Messenger of Allah said: Retain some of your property, for that will be better for you [9]

1.4 Safety and security of your family

We are not mortals and we’ll die one day. So, what about our children and spouses? Did you stop to think about how they’re going to survive afterwards?

That’s why saving money to continue securing our beloved ones after we’re gone is something encouraged in religions. It’s a very delicate and sensitive area, since it represents a very thin line between faith and materialism.

We should still be believing in God and trusting that he’s the sole protector of all of us including whom we leave behind and at the same time, we should be taking practical steps to secure them as much as we can without overly getting anxious.

So, beware of crossing to the dark side of saving money when you do it on the expense on other important or current stuff.

Our resources are to be used wisely, for the sake of God’s eternal kingdom (Luke 16:9) [10]
Narrated Saad bin Abi Waqqas: I said, "O Allah's Messenger, I have wealth and no one to inherit from me except my one daughter. Shall I give two-thirds of my property as Sadaqah?" He replied, "No." I said, "Shall I give half of it as Sadaqah?" He replied, "No." I said, "Shall I give a third of it as Sadaqat?" He replied, "You may give a third as Sadaqat, which is still a lot. To leave your heirs rich is better than to leave them poor and begging from people." [Agreed upon]. [11]

2- To support and improve the wellbeing of others

All religions are about improving all humanity and leaving this world better than we entered it. So, it’s not just about you. It’s about those around you who you know and don’t know.

2.1 To bring joy for others

A gift puts a smile on us, both the giver and the recipient. So, saving money to buy a gift for someone elevates the emotional wellbeing in the room.

You don’t have to break the bank while doing so. You can save to surprise your spouse or children with something they wished a while ago like a wallet or a toy.

2.2 To help ones in need

Saving to give for charitable causes either voluntarily or abiding to Zakah in Islam is a good dead that you’ll be rewarded for.

You also can use your saved money to help your neighbor or friend who has a medical emergency. Having that money will enable you to be in service to those people and probably save them.

I was faced with few situations where I could significantly contribute to support my friends who were in desperate need of money to solve their problems.

3- To invest and make more money with the purpose of doing all the above

Investing is an act to make more out of what you invested, so if it’s money, the outcome should be more money, and more money means more opportunities to do all of the above points that we discussed:

  1. Better preparing for the future
  2. Better supporting and improving the wellbeing of others.

Next actions

As we discussed, saving money has two sides, white and dark, sin and good dead, so make sure to stay in the white side and away from the sin one using the following roles and next actions:

  1. Always prioritize your family’s current needs
  2. Always trust in God’s protection over you and your family against future obstacles to come
  3. Refrain from planning to purchase illegal or sinful or Haram things
  4. Set aside a percentage of your annual income to donate to those in need
  5. Set clear saving goals, ones that include education, retirement, preparing for the rainy days, and for empowering your children.

References

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_views_on_sin
  2. https://www.biblestudytools.com/1-john/3-4.html
  3. https://www.biblestudytools.com/romans/3-23.html
  4. https://www.biblestudytools.com/john/5-24.html
  5. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_views_on_sin
  6. https://quran.com/33/
  7. https://quran.com/4
  8. https://quran.com/11
  9. https://sunnah.com/abudawud:3317
  10. https://biblia.com/bible/esv/luke/16/9
  11. https://sunnah.com/bukhari:3728

2 thoughts on “Is Saving Money A Sin Or Haram? 8 Things To Consider”

  1. Pingback: Is Saving Money Easy? 5 Real Challenges To Consider

  2. Pingback: 5 Advantages And 11 Disadvantages Of Saving Money At Home

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.