Martin R. DeHaan

1891-1965
 

M.R. DeHaan was born in Zeeland,Michigan, the son of a cobbler who had emigrated from the Netherlands. He was graduated from Hope College, Holland, Michigan, and was valedictorian of his graduating class at the University of Illinois College of Medicine on June 25, 1914. He married Priscilla Venhuizen and soon became well-known as a successful physician in western Michigan. The precept of his godly parents bore fruit during a period of illness when he sensed the distinct call to preach the Gospel. He gave up his medical practice and enrolled at Western Theological Seminary, Holland, Michigan. After completion of his seminary training, he pastored two churches in Grand Rapids, which grew rapidly under his clear and forceful preaching. Soon his strong convictions concerning major Bible doctrines reached thousands of people through a local radio station. The Lord endowed him with the ability to make Bible truth simple and easy to be understood, as he emphasized the grace of God and the blessed hope of our Lord's return. He began sharing this gift with several large Bible classes, and in 1938, as an outgrowth of one of these classes in Detroit, the Lord led in the expansion of this teaching by means of radio. In a few years the program, known as the Radio Bible Class, rapidly gained listeners and was heard over two national networks. In more than a quarter of a century, without ever appealing to the radio audience for funds, DeHaan saw the broadcast grow under God's direction from a local venture on a 50-watt station to its present ministry of more than 600 selected stations around the world. During those years, he spoke at many Bible conferences across the country and wrote 25 books and numerous booklets. He edited and published a monthly devotional guide, Our Daily Bread, which has a present circulation of over 800,000. The entire literature production of the Radio Bible Class now exceeds 1,000,000 pieces a month. On December 13, 1965, M.R. DeHaan was called home to be with the Lord. He was laid to rest in a Grand Rapids cemetery under a simple stone marker with these words: The Lord Himself shall descend from heaven...and the dead in Christ shall rise...I Thessalonians 4:16...perhaps today! 

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