[Surat al-Baqarah 2:275-76, 278-79] Those who swallow down usury cannot arise except as one whom the Shaytan has prostrated by (his) touch does rise. That is because they say: Trading is only like usury, while Allah has allowed trading and forbidden usury. To whomsoever then the admonition has come from his Lord, then he desists, he shall have what has already passed, and his affair is in the hands of Allah; and whoever returns (to it) – these are the inmates of the fire; they shall abide in it.
Allah does not bless usury, and He causes charitable deeds to prosper, and Allah does not love any ungrateful sinner.
O you who believe! Be careful of (your duty to) Allah and relinquish what remains (due) from usury, if you are believers.
But if you do (it) not, then be apprised of war from Allah and His Messenger; and if you repent, then you shall have your capital; neither shall you make (the debtor) suffer loss, nor shall you be made to suffer loss.
[Surah Ali `Imran 3:130] O you who believe! Do not devour usury, making it double and redouble, and be careful of (your duty to) Allah, that you may be successful.
[Surat al-Nisaa’ 4:161] And for their taking usury though indeed they were forbidden it and for their devouring the property of people falsely, and We have prepared for the unbelievers from among them a painful chastisement.
[Surat al-Rum 30:39] And whatever you lay out as usury, so that it may increase in the property of men, it shall not increase with Allah; and whatever you give in charity, desiring Allah’s pleasure – it is these (persons) that shall get manifold.
None can doubt that riba is haram and a major sin, and no disobedience to Allah is worth the risk of His punishment. We must remember that the life of this world is short and fleeting, and that the purpose of our existence is not to lust after beauty and wealth, but rather to worship Allah correctly and live by His rules. Just because riba is widespread and common, it does not make it permissible.