2:12,13 These verses may refer to the captivity of Israel and Judah. But the passage is also a prophecy of the conversion of the Jews to Christ. The Lord would not only bring them from captivity, and multiply them, but the Lord Jesus would open their way to God, by taking upon him the nature of man, and by the work of his Spirit in their hearts, breaking the fetters of Satan. Thus he has gone before, and the people follow, breaking, in his strength, through the enemies that would stop their way to heaven.
13. The breaker—Jehovah-Messiah, who breaks through every obstacle in the way of their restoration: not as formerly breaking forth to destroy them for transgression (Ex 19:22; Jud 21:15), but breaking a way for them through their enemies.
they—the returning Israelites and Jews.
passed through the gate—that is, through the gate of the foe's city in which they had been captives. So the image of the resurrection (Ho 13:14) represents Israel's restoration.
their king—"the Breaker," peculiarly "their king" (Ho 3:5; Mt 27:37).
pass before them—as He did when they went up out of Egypt (Ex 13:21; De 1:30, 33).
the Lord on the head of them—Jehovah at their head (Isa 52:12). Messiah, the second person, is meant (compare Ex 23:20; 33:14; Isa 63:9).