The Meaning of Rizq (Provision) When Used in the Qur’an and Sunnah

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam
Question: Could you please tell the meaning of rizq when used in Quran & Hadith and what this rizq includes ? And when promises of needs being fulfilled are mentioned, does it mean the basic human needs like food and drink or other thing too ?
Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,
I pray that this finds you in the best of health and spirits, insha’Allah.
Provision or sustenance (rizq) has a linguistic sense of, “giving” or “apportionment” [al-Samin al-Halabi, al-Durr al-Masun; Abu al-Su`ud, Irshad al-`Aql al-Salim ila Mazaya al-Kitab al-Karim]
However, it is used in different specific ways in the primary texts of the Qur’an and the Traditions (hadith) of the Holy Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace).
It sometimes refers to:
(a) the general worldly or next-worldly giving of blessings and the like. Allah Most High says, “[those] who believe in the unseen, keep up the prayer, and give out of what We have provided for them.” [2.3] i.e. that which we have given them and blessed them with;
(b) that which nourishes us— and by extension generally that which one wears or uses. The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “If you were to rely on Allah as He should be relied on, He would provide for you as He provides for the birds. They go out in the morning hungry and return in the evening full.” i.e. their bellies are full;
(c) a great good that has been granted to its its possessor. Allah Most High says, “Give out of what We have provided for you, before death comes to one of you…” [63.10] i.e. from wealth, knowledge, and prestige.
[Raghib, al-Mufradat fi Gharib al-Qur’an; al-Halabi, `Umdat al-Huffaz]
The Provider (al-Razzaq)
Allah Most High says, “God is the Provider, the Lord of Power, the Ever Mighty.” [53.58]
In general, the one who provides is the one who facilitates the provision reaching the one provided for.
The Proof of Islam al-Ghazali explains that the Name of Allah, The Provider (al-Razzaq), is “the One who has created provision and those provided for, and He has conveyed that provision to them. And He has created the means whereby they may enjoy and benefit from these blessings.” [Ghazali, al-Maqsad al-Asna fi Sharh Asma’ Allah al-Husna]
Imam Ahmad Zarruq in his Commentary on the Ninety-Nine Names of Allah says, “The Provider is the One who sustains all existent things with that which preserves their form and substance from His pure Generosity.”
See also: Allah’s Names Explained: Al-Razzaq – Shaykh Faraz Rabbani and: Al-Ghazali on the Ninety-nine Beautiful Names of God and:Bringing Barakah Into Your Wealth and Life
I’d highly suggest taking these classes:Fiqh of Life: Essentials of Halal and Haram and:Money Matters: Islamic Finance in Everyday Life
And Allah alone gives success.
wassalam,
Tabraze Azam
Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani