The present study investigates the onset of penetrative convection induced by selective absorption of radiation in a magnetic nanofluid saturated porous medium. The influence of Brownian motion, thermophoresis, and magnetophoresis on magnetic nanofluid treatment is taken into consideration. The Darcy’s model is selected for the porous medium. We conduct a linear stability analysis to examine the onset of instability and evaluate the results for two different configurations, namely, when the layer is heated from below and when the layer is heated from above. The numerical investigations are carried out by applying the Chebyshev pseudospectral method. The effect of the porosity parameter E, parameter Y (represents the ratio of internal heating to boundary heating), Lewis number Le, concentration Rayleigh number Rn, Langevin parameter αL, width of nanofluid layer d, diffusivity ratio η, and modified diffusivity ratio NA is examined at the onset of convection. The results indicate that the convection commences easily with an increase in the value of Y, Le, and NA but opposite in the case with a decrease in the value of E, αL, η and d for both the two configurations. The parameter Rn advances the onset of convection when the layer is heated from below, while delays the onset of convection when the layer is heated from above.