Quran 9:29 [Jizya]

Fight those who do not believe in Allah, nor in the latter day, nor do they prohibit what Allah and His Apostle have prohibited, nor follow the religion of truth, out of those who have been given the Book, until they pay the tax in acknowledgment of superiority and they are in a state of subjection [Quran 9:29]


In the early days, Jizya was a tribute paid by nations which had fallen under Islamic rule, which was common practice in the old days. And it is to this that Quran is referring to. Later on, Jizya became an individual tax paid by non-Muslim citizens: males who could afford it, who did not pay the Zakah tax which was required of Muslims and who chose not to serve in the army.

There is no separation between religion and state in Islam. The US government, on the other hand, is a secular government. We can argue till the cows come home which system of governance is better, but that would get us no where. An Islamic state does acknowledge that its non-Muslim minority is not bound by divine laws as the Muslims are. Therefore, it would be unethical for a Muslim government to ask for charity dues from non-Muslims in whose religion it is not compulsory to give charity. Furthermore, it is immoral to ask a Buddhist, for example, who believes in non-violence to be drafted into the army. You must agree that if only Muslim citizens pay charity dues and serve in the army and non-Muslims don’t have to do anything, it would be unfair. Hence, non-Muslims (usually males who could afford) were asked to pay a poll tax instead, which by most historical accounts was one gold dinar maximum per year, as compared to the 2.5% of their entire worth that Muslims must pay each year. Even so, Caliph Omar on his deathbed left the following instruction: “I instruct you to be good to the Dhimmis [non-Muslims] for they are your responsibility. Do not tax them beyond their capacity. Ensure that they pay the Jizya without undue inconvenience…With regard to the people, I enjoin upon you to administer justice with an even hand. See that all the legitimate requirements of the people are met. Be concerned for their welfare. Ensure the safety of their person and property…Treat all the people as equal. Be a pillar of strength for those who are weak and oppressed. Those who are strong but do wrong, make them pay for their wrong-doings.” You can find the complete test of his message at this web site:


Furthermore, if any non-Muslim tribes agreed to serve in the military or agreed to pay the Zakaat (charity which Muslims pay) they were excluded from paying Jizya.

3 thoughts on “Quran 9:29 [Jizya]

  1. Herman December 18, 2013 at 3:15 pm Reply

    Let us try to determine whether this “jizya” is indeed a tax or whether it is actually extortion.
    We observe that the whole notion of fighting only the Christians and Jews within an “Islamic state” for the Jizya is NOT found in the Koran — this concept was added by the author. Koran 9:29 does not state “Fight those within our state who do not believe in Allah…”; instead it states “Fight those who do not believe in Allah…” Certainly some evidence for extortion here.
    A tax is imposed by what people regard as their legitimate government in a well-defined country with the purpose of advancing the general welfare of everyone. Now do the Muslims of Muhammad’s day comprise a legitimate government within set borders with the backing of most of the people? WE NOTE RIGHT AWAY THAT NO ONE ELECTED THE MUSLIMS. The author uses the phrase “non-Muslim minority” but certainly there is no evidence that the Muslims outnumbered the non-Muslims. Of course, we know that at the time (as well as today) there were more Christians than Muslims in our world.
    And what precisely were the Muslims of Muhammad’s day going to do with the money that they collected from the Christians & Jews? Were they going to, say, build roads that extended into the areas where the Christians & Jews lived? OR WERE THEY INSTEAD GOING TO USE THE MONEY TO FUND THEIR WARS OF CONQUEST? Before answering these questions, When IF EVER did Muhammad and his merry men ever do something to notably help the Christians & Jews?
    Finally, the author is in error when he calls the jizya a “poll tax,” unless he can provide evidence that the Christians & Jews had the opportunity to VOTE against the Muslims.

  2. sincereadvisor December 19, 2013 at 1:33 am Reply

    I think you are being ridiculous here! There are only a handful of states that were created as a result of a plebiscite, and all others were the result of conquest. Taxes are extortions! Nobody wants to pay any tax, but you are forced to do so. Failure to pay taxes can result in prison terms in almost all countries.

    The problem that you have my friend is that you don’t read and are quick to comment. You are making hasty generalizations. I explained this in my explanation of Quran Verse 9:29 (which does mention Jizya).
    Here is the link:

  3. Herman December 22, 2013 at 1:26 am Reply

    Did you not write elsewhere that the population of the Muslims was tiny at the time? So what gives them the right to demand money from other people?
    Consider the following command from a god:
    “Fight the Muslims until they pay you money and feel subdued.”
    But at this point in your life, you want to cling to Muhammad’s god as your own god, so you will strive mightily to justify the violence.

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