Thomas Hooker on Union with Christ*
The poor saints of God . . . are made one with Christ, and are of the blood royal; and this is the greatest privilege that can be. This should bear up the hearts of poor Christians. Ye are now in the very gate of heaven; nay let me say as the apostle speaks (and I see no reason why a man may not say he is in heaven in truth, though not in that measure and largeness of glory he shall be afterwards, 1 Thess. 4:17). The happiness that a Christian shall have in heaven is this: "he shall be ever with the Lord Jesus." Heaven were not heaven unless a man might be with Christ there. The place doth not make a man happy, but the union with a Savior makes him happy; and to be joined to Father, Son and Holy Ghost makes him happyand the believer is now knit to them and therefore must needs be happy . . . Happy are ye, oh believing souls! Who is like unto you? Ye are saved by God and are married to the Lord Jesus Christ and are the Spouses of the Savior of the world. And he that is Judge of the world is your Husband, your beloved, and you are his. Let nothing therefore dismay your hearts.
*Thomas Hooker (1586-1647) came to Boston from England in 1633. He was pastor in Newtown (modern Cambridge) when he migrated with his congregation to the Connecticut River Valley in 1636. There they founded the town of Hartford. The excerpt above is from his book, The Soules Union With Christ (1638) 9-10.