One small facet of the discussions in the past year over deceptive or syncretistic approaches to Moslem evangelism has dealt with the use of the name "Allah" to refer not to the false god worshipped by Moslems but to the One True God who has revealed Himself in the Bible. Many have demonstrated that, in Arabic, no other good word exists by which to refer to God, and that Arabic Christians have long employed the name "Allah" to refer to the True God.
I have repeatedly stated that I have no problem with the employ of the name "Allah" in those contexts, so long as differentiation is clearly made to ensure that the hearer knows that we as Christians reject the false Islamic deity promoted by the false prophet Mohammed in the false scripture the Qur'an. We are sometimes led to believe that, of course, this is always done and that nobody anywhere would ever conceive of trying to blur the lines of distinction in order to bait-and-switch potential Moslem converts.
But, as I have given the matter more thought, I find that I have a question nagging me. I can see why, in an Arabic-speaking place like Saudi Arabia, missionaries might have few good choices other than to employ the Arabic name "Allah" when speaking of the Christian God. But a great deal of Moslem evangelization takes place in areas other than Arabic-speaking countries. In fact the book The Camel itself reminds us that not only is Arabic not the first language of many Moslems, but that an innumerable population of Moslems don't even speak Arabic at all.
So, in a non-Arabic-speaking population that has no linguistic limitation requiring the use of the Arabic name "Allah"—populations in which the word "Allah" is no less a loan-word from another language than the English word "God" would be—what good reason, other than trying to confuse Moslems and blur the distinctions between the Christian God and the Moslem god, would there be for bypassing the "heart-language" words available to describe God in favor of the foreign word "Allah"?