[The entire Old Testament] ground-plan is the whole scheme of Messianic prophecy, from the germinal revelation in Genesis concerning the suffering, yet triumphant Seed of the Woman to the coming to His Temple of the long-absent "Angel of the Covenant" in Malachi. That hope alone explains the Book, giving meaning and consistency to its story. Was it a chimera, an hallucination? According to the prophecy of Micah, the messianic Shepherd of Israel had to be born in Bethlehem. It is unthinkable that an heir to the throne of David could be born in Bethlehem now, and be also able to prove his legitimacy by documentary evidence. The event must clearly have taken place already, or Micah is a false prophet, a raiser of false hopes, along with the other writers in the Old Testament.
Max I. Reich (1867-1945)
Must ask some Jews how they figure it... Oh, and hat tip to CQOD.