21:4 If his master gave10 him a wife, and she bore sons or daughters, the wife and the children will belong to her master, and he will go out by himself.
sn The slave would not have the right or the means to acquire a wife. Thus, the idea of the master’s “giving” him a wife is clear—the master would have to pay the bride price and make the provision. In this case, the wife and the children are actually the possession of the master unless the slave were to pay the bride price—but he is a slave because he got into debt. The law assumes that the master was better able to provide for this woman than the freed slave and that it was most important to keep the children with the mother.