Martin R De Haan
1891 – 1965
M. R. De Haan was born in Zeeland, Michigan, the son of a cobbler who had emigrated from the Netherlands. He graduated from Hope College in Holland, Michigan, and the University of Illinois College of Medicine. On June 25, 1914, he married Priscilla Venhuizen and soon became a successful physician in Western Michigan. The teaching 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 completed training at Western Theological Seminary in Holland, Michigan. He pastored two churches in Grand Rapids which grew rapidly under his clear and forceful preaching.
The Lord endowed him with the ability to make Bible truth simple and easily understood. De Haan 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. The program, known as the Radio Bible Class, grew rapidly and was soon heard over two national networks. In more than a quarter of a century, without ever appealing to the radio audience for funds, De Haan saw the broadcast grow under God’s direction from a local venture on a fifty-watt station to a ministry of more than six hundred selected stations around the world.
During those years he spoke at many Bible conferences across the country and wrote twenty-five books and numerous booklets. He edited and published a monthly devotional guide, Our Daily Bread, which has circulation of over eight hundred thousand. The entire literature production of the Radio Bible Class now exceeds a million pieces per month. On December 13, 1965, M. R. De Haan was called home to be with the Lord.