Martin R. Dehaan, 1891-1965
AUTHOR: Ruckman
PUBLISHED ON: March 17, 2003
PUBLISHED IN: Biographies

Martin R. DeHaan
M.R. DeHaan was born in Zeeland, Michigan, the son of a cob-
bler 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 west-
ern 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 com-
pletion of his seminary training, he pastored two churches in
Grand Rapids, which grew rapidly under his clear and forceful
        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
        In a few years the program, known as the Radio Bible
Class, rapidly gained listeners and was heard over two na-
tional 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 pres-
ent circulation of over 800,000. The entire literature pro-
duction 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 ceme-
tery 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!

Ruckman ’69

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