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Parsha Mitzvot-Mishpatim-Mitzvah 59 – Concept 124

“If he shall take another in addition to her, he shall not diminish her food, her clothing, or her marital relationship.” (Exodus 21:10) A husband may not withhold food, clothing and relations from his wife. (Rambam, Hilchot Ishut – The Laws of Marriage)

The Torah does not obligate the husband to provide as much as it insists that he may not withhold, that which is hers. All these things are hers, not his that his is providing for her.

The word for marital relations is “onah,” her time, meaning that a husband must spend time with his wife. That time must be an expression of intimacy, not simply spending time next to each other without relating.

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