Why is the Qur’an written in Arabic?

Hi Ahmed,

Please let me know if you could assist me with this. If Islam is the true religion of God, why did he cater the religion toward Arabs? Why is the Qur’an written in Arabic? It makes it extremely difficult not being Arab to understand how to pray in Arabic.

I’ve been contemplating to convert to Islam for about 2 years now. I try my best to learn how to pray but have been having a difficult time trying to figure it out.

– former Islam 101 student

In the Name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Regarding why Arabic is language of Qur’an and prayer, God has always revealed His Scriptures in the language of the people that received it. So the Torah was revealed in Hebrew, the Evangel was revealed in Aramaic, and the Qur’an was revealed in Arabic. This is so the prophet and his community could directly understand the message. The Final Testament is in Arabic, but that does not mean that Arabs are a “chosen people,” for it is a fact that less than 20% of today’s Muslims are Arabs.

The Qur’an came primarily to deliver a Message to humanity, and this Message can be translated and understood into all languages. For this reason, we see many converts from Greek, Egyptian, and Persian backgrounds in the early history of Islam. However, only the meaning of the message of the Qur’an can be translated, not the Qur’an itself; so all translations have always been seen as approximations or interpretations. It is precisely because of this firm stance that the Qur’an has been preserved for over 14 centuries without any changes. The Arabic language never died away nor did it change irrevocably because Muslims (Arab and non-Arab) had to recite the Qur’an in Arabic for their mandatory prayers.

The obligatory prayers must be said in Arabic so as to bring unity to the Muslim community, not to impose any hardship. The idea is that any Muslim, no matter where he is from or when he lives, can read and pray the same way as every other Muslim in the world and the original Muslims who followed the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and feel that he is truly a part of a single brotherhood.

Regarding learning how to pray, you can check out the following website:
http://www.newmuslimguide.com/en

For step-by-step prayer reference, I recommend the following book by Mustafa Umar:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B009N4A4MI

To find a prayer tutor, use this site:
https://www.islamicfinder.org/places/

Enter you location, and it will give you the mosques and Islamic centers that are in your area. From there you can contact one of those mosques and ask for someone to teach you how to pray.

May peace be with you,
Ahmed

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