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Can Muslims Accept Christmas Cash Bonus?

23 December, 2023
Q Respected schoalrs as-salamu `alaykum. We live in a Christian-dominated country in Asia. Every December, the government gives a Christmas cash bonus to all government employees nationwide, regardless of their religious affiliation. Is it permissible for a Muslim government employee to receive such amount without transgressing the Qur’an and the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him)? Jazakum Allah khayran.


Wa `alaykum as-salamu wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh.

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

In this fatwa:

  • There is nothing wrong in receiving a cash bonus from one’s employer on the occasion of Christmas.
  • Such money is usually given to employees regardless of their religious affiliation, and hence there is nothing wrong in receiving that money and spending it in a lawful way.

Responding to the question, Dr. Sano Koutoub Moustapha, Professor of Jurisprudence and its principles at the International Islamic University, Malaysia, states: 

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Muslims should believe in all the Messengers of Allah and they should love all of them. This is clearly stated in the Quran. Allah Almighty says:

{The messenger believes in that which hath been revealed unto him from his Lord and (so do) the believers. Each one believes in Allah and His angels and His scriptures and His messengers We make no distinction between any of His messengers and they say: We hear, and we obey. (Grant us) Thy forgiveness, our Lord. Unto Thee is the journeying.} (Al-Baqarah 2:285)

Accordingly, there is no harm in receiving a cash bonus from your employer (government) on the occasion of Christmas. However, you should use the money according to the teachings of Islam. In other words, you should not buy any prohibited items with that money. This is not a transgression to the Quran or the Sunnah. But it is a donation that you didn’t ask for, therefore you are recommended to accept it and spend it in good causes.

Almighty Allah knows best.

Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.