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Is Arabic the Language of the People of Paradise?

Praise be to Allah.

There is no mention in the Qur’aan or in the saheeh Sunnah – as far as we know – of which language is spoken by the people of Paradise. What is narrated concerning that is a hadeeth which is not soundly narrated from our Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), and some other reports (athaar).

It was narrated by al-Tabaraani in al-Awsat, al-Haakim, al-Bayhaqi in Shu’ab al-Eemaan and others that Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Love the Arabs for three reasons, because I am an Arab, the Qur’aan is Arabic and the speech of the people of Paradise is Arabic.”

Ibn al-Jawzi ruled that this hadeeth is fabricated. Al-Dhahabi said: I think that the hadeeth is fabricated (mawdoo’). Al-Albaani said in al-Silsilah al-Da’eefah (no. 160): (it is) fabricated.

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah have mercy on him) said: Similarly, Abu Ja’far Muhammad ibn ‘Abd-Allah al-Haafiz al-Koofi, who is known as Mateen, told us: al-‘Ala’ ibn ‘Amr al-Hanafi told us: Yahya ibn Zayd al-Ash’ari told us: Ibn Jurayj told us, from Ibn 'Abbaas (may Allah be pleased with him) that he said: the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Love the Arabs for three reasons: because I am an Arab, the Qur’aan is Arabic, and the language of the people of Paradise is Arabic.”

Al-Haafiz al-Salafi said: this is a hasan hadeeth. I do not know whether he meant that its isnaad is hasan according to the way of the scholars of hadeeth, or that its text is hasan in general terms. Abu’l-Faraj ibn al-Jawzi mentioned this hadeeth among the mawdoo’ (fabricated) texts and said: al-Tha’labi said: it has no basis. Ibn Hibbaan said: Yahya ibn Zayd narrated unsound ahaadeeth from sound narrators, so it is invalid to quote his reports as evidence. And Allah knows best.

End quote from Iqtida’ al-Siraat al-Mustaqeem (1/158).
Al-Tabaraani narrated in al-Awsat that Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) said: the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “I am an Arab, and the Qur’aan is Arabic, and the language of the people of Paradise is Arabic.”

Al-Albaani said in al-Silsilah al-Da’eefah (no. 161): it is fabricated.

The point is that there is no saheeh evidence to show which language is spoken by the people of Paradise. Hence we should refrain from speaking about this issue and not indulge in it, and we should refer knowledge of the matter to Allah (may He be exalted), and focus instead on issues that will lead to good deeds in this world.

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah have mercy on him) was asked: in what (language) will Allah address the people on the Day of Resurrection? Will Allah address them in the tongue of the Arabs? Is it true that the language of the people of Hell will be Farsi and that the language of the people of Paradise will be Arabic? He replied: Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds. It is not known what language the people will speak on that Day, or in what language they will hear the words of the Lord, may He be exalted, because Allah has not told us anything about that, nor has His Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). It is not true that Farsi will be the language of the people of Hell, or that Arabic will be the language of the people of Paradise. We do not know of any discussion of that among the Sahaabah (may Allah be pleased with them), rather all of them refrained from speaking of that because speaking about such a thing is discussion of something unnecessary… but there was a dispute concerning that among later scholars. Some people said that they will be addressed in Arabic and others said that the people of Hell will respond in Farsi, which will be their language in Hell. Others said that they will be addressed in Syriac because that was the language of Adam and from it stemmed all other languages. Others said that the people of Paradise will speak Arabic. There is no basis for any of these ideas, whether on the grounds of common sense or in any report or text, rather they are mere claims that are devoid of any evidence. And Allah knows best and is most Wise. End quote.

Majmoo’ al-Fataawa (4/299)

And Allah knows best.

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