Imam Al-Nawawi's Riyad-us-Saliheen
Chapter 35
Husband's rights concerning his Wife

Allah, the Exalted, says:

"Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allah has made one of them to excel the other, and because they spend (to support them) from their means. Therefore, the righteous women are devoutly obedient (to Allah and to their husbands), and guard in the husband's absence what Allah orders them to guard (e.g., their chastity and their husband's property).'' (4: 34)

281. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, "When a man calls his wife to his bed, and she does not respond and he (the husband) spends the night angry with her, the angels curse her until morning".
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

   In another narration: The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, "When a woman spends the night away from the bed of her husband, the angels curse her until morning".
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

   In another narration: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, "By Him in Whose Hand is my life, when a man calls his wife to his bed, and she does not respond, the One Who is above the heaven becomes displeased with her until he (her husband) becomes pleased with her".
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary: This Hadith makes it abundantly clear that obedience of the husband is compulsory on the wife. If, in the absence of any lawful reason, she refuses to obey the orders of her husband, she will be liable to the Wrath and Curse of Allah until she returns to obedience. This Hadith has a stern warning for those women who do not care for the displeasure of their husbands because of their bad temperament, stubbornness and habit of dominating their husbands.

282. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, "It is not lawful for a woman to observe (voluntary) fasting without the permission of her husband when he is at home; and she should not allow anyone to enter his house without his permission.".
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:  It lays down a principle for a wife that performing Nawafil (voluntary acts of worship) at the cost of the husband rights is not permissible.

283. Ibn `Umar (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: The Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, "All of you are guardians and are responsible for your subjects. The ruler is a guardian of his subjects, the man is a guardian of his family, the woman is a guardian and is responsible for her husband's house and his offspring; and so all of you are guardians and are responsible for your subjects.''
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary: This Hadith ordains every individual in society, whether he is a ruler or ruled citizen or even a woman who leads her life within the four walls of her house, to perform his duties within his own sphere. Not only that, every person has been made responsible to reform the state of affairs in his control and establish equity and justice because he will be held accountable for any negligence on his part in this respect.

284. Abu `Ali Talq bin `Ali (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, "When a man calls his wife to satisfy his desire, she must go to him even if she is occupied with the oven".
[At-Tirmidhi and An-Nasa'i].

285. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, "If I were to order anyone to prostrate himself before another, I would have ordered a woman to prostrate herself before her husband".
[At-Tirmidhi]

Commentary: This Hadith also shows the unique importance of the wife's obedience to her husband within her capacity and as long as he does not order her to disobey Allah.

286. Umm Salamah (May Allah be pleased with her) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, "Any woman dies while her husband is pleased with her, she will enter Jannah".
[At-Tirmidhi].

Commentary:  The distinction mentioned in this Hadith is for those women who abide by the duties and obligations entrusted to them by Islam and also endeavour to keep their husbands happy. Allah (SWT) will pardon their ordinary acts of omission and commission and admit them to Jannah.

287. Mu`adh bin Jabal (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, "Whenever a woman harms her husband in this world (that is without any due right), his wife among the (Houris in Jannah) says: `You must not harm him. May Allah destroy you! He is only a passing guest with you and is about to leave you to come to us".
[At-Tirmidhi].

Commentary:  The Islamic Shari`ah commands men to treat their wives with kindness. In the same spirit it commands wives to be obedient to their husbands. She can hurt the feelings of her husband by using indecent language, immodest conduct, immoral actions and making unfair demands which are beyond his means. It is very common among women to tease and trouble their husbands by these three practices, except for pious women.

288.  Usamah bin Zaid (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: The Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, "I am not leaving behind me a more harmful trial for men than women".
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:  According to this Hadith, women and their beauty are the greatest and most disastrous mischief for men. This fact can be easily verified by observation. Men are generally constrained to take to corruption and unfair means of income to fulfill undue demands of their wives. If women learn to lead a simple life, men will not need much to make money through unlawful means. Similarly, it is women who compel men to hold all kinds of meaningless customs and ceremonies on marriage parties and thereby violate Islamic injunctions, and incur more expenses. If women go by the Islamic injunctions, the marriages would become a greater source of happiness and pleasure.