The Obligation of a Woman Obeying her Husband
It is obligatory on you O Muslim woman to obey your husband in matters of good. Abu Hurairah reported that Allaah’s Messenger (sallAllaahu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “If a woman prays her five (daily) prayers and keeps her private parts chaste and obeys her husband, she will enter Paradise from any of the doors of Paradise she wishes.” [Reported by Ibn Hibbaan in his Saheeh] From Abu Hurairah (radyAllaahu ‘anhu), Allaah’s Messenger (sallAllaahu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “It is not lawful for a woman to fast while her husband is present unless she has his permission. And she must not allow anyone in his home except with his permission.” [Reported by Al-Bukhaaree and Muslim] Also from Abu Hurairah (radyAllaahu ‘anhu), Allaah’s Messenger (sallAllaahu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “When a man calls his wife to bed and she does not come to him, and he spends the night angry with her, the angels curse her until the morning arrives.” [Reported by Al-Bukhaaree and Muslim] And in the report of Al-Bukhaaree and Muslim, the Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “By the One in whose Hand my soul is, there is no man that calls his wife to bed and she refuses him, except that the One who is above the heavens is displeased with her until he (the husband) becomes content with her.” From the rights the husband possesses over his wife is that she fulfills the duty of tending to his household and not coming out from it except with his permission. The Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “The woman is the caretaker of her husband’s household and she will be questioned as to her responsibility.” [Reported by Al-Bukhaaree and Muslim] Another right he possesses over her is that she fulfills the duties of the household and that she does not make him hire a female servant, which will cause harm and due to which there will be a risk of danger for himself and his children. Shaikh-ul-Islaam Ibn Taimiyyah (rahimahullaah) said commenting on Allaah’s saying: “Therefore the righteous women are devoutly obedient and guard in the husband’s absence what Allaah orders them to guard (i.e. their chastity).” [Surah An-Nisaa: 34]: “This mandates the unrestricted obligation of a woman obeying her husband, in all affairs, such as serving him, traveling with him, assisting him and other matters, as is indicated in the Sunnah of Allaah’s Messenger.”  The great scholar, Ibn Al-Qayyim, said: “Those who say that it is obligatory for the woman to serve the husband use (this ayah) as proof in that those who Allaah directed His Speech to (on this occasion) considered this to be from al-ma’roof (good). But as for the woman relaxing and having the husband serve her, sweep, grind the flour, knead the bread, wash the clothes, fix the bed, and serve the household, then that is from al-munkar (evil). And Allaah says: ‘And they (women) have rights (over their husbands) similar to those (of their husbands) over them.’ [Surah Al-Baqarah: 228] And Allaah says: ‘Men are the protectors and maintainers over women.’ [Surah An-Nisaa: 34] So if a woman doesn’t serve her husband, but instead he acts like a servant to her, then this means that she is the protector and maintainer over him.” He further said: “For indeed Allaah obligated him to spend on her, to clothe her and to provide her with a place of dwelling in exchange for his enjoying her and her serving him, as well as what the habits of the spouses call for. Likewise, the binding marriage agreements require that the spouses live in kindness. And kindness means a woman’s serving (her husband) and taking care of the inner affairs of the household.” And he said: “And there is no difference as to whether the woman is prestigious or lowly, or if she is poor or rich. Just look at this woman who was the most prestigious of women in the world…”  He is referring to Faatimah (radyAllaahu ‘anhaa) for she would serve her husband and come to the Prophet (sallAllaahu 'alayhi wa sallam) complaining to him, but he would not complain about her.
Footnotes:  Majmoo’ al-Fataawaa (32/260-261)  al-Hadee (5/188-189)
Source: His book “Tanbeehaat ‘alaa Ahkaam takhtassu bil-Mu’minaat” (pg. 97-99)
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