Ever Christian has been told and shown that there are hundreds of prophesies in the Old Testament that point to the first and second coming of Jesus. This is a core belief and all the proof needed to live lives in anticipation of not having to put up with real living very long. It won't be long now has been going on a very long time however as we all know, over the past 2000 years.
As we all know, the New Testament is the sequel to the Old. But consider this. How hard would it be to look BACK into the Old Testament, knowing it's "prophesies" on many topics unrelated to Jesus and write a rather mythical account of Jesus life which would match what the OT already said? That, of course, would look very much like the OT predicted Jesus when in fact the story of Jesus was written by mining the OT for scriptures to write the story. It would be very easy to do and actually was what was done.
In Matthew's birth narratives of Jesus , Matthew writes A story of Jesus birth circumstances based solely on Old Testament Scriptures. Matthew's version of Jesus birth in no way matches Luke's story. It is obvious neither read or heard of the other's story when they were inserted into the Gospel's to quell the problem of "We were not born of fornication" circulating about Jesus real birth circumstances. Matthew made the OT mean what it never meant to write his story of Jesus. No one knew Jesus real birth circumstances either in time or place, so he wrote one. In doing so it looks like the Old Testament prophesied everything about Jesus long ahead of time.
None of the following have anything to do with Jesus nor are they future predictions beyond the lives of those living at the time. Prophecy is for THEM, not us generally in their lifetime to address their own stresses and fears. Many OT prophecies failed to come to pass for them as well.
- 1:22-23 the birth of Emmanuel (It means "God IS with us"
- 2:5-6 the coming of a shepherd from Bethlehem
- 2:15 God’s son being called up out of Egypt
- 2:17-18 Rachel’s lamentation for her children
- 2:23 One who shall be called a Nazorean
Each one of these OT scriptures did not originally mean anything near what Matthew updated them to mean for his story of Jesus. Originally the out of Egypt story was about Israel, not Jesus but Matthew had the family fleeing to and from Egypt to escape Herod's murderous rampage against the innocents because it made a great story but not necessarily history. He needed a Herod story to go after Jesus just as Pharoah went after Moses as a baby. Luke never heard of such a thing and his version of Jesus family has them going back to Nazareth peacefully after 40 days of ritual purification etc.
Simply put, it is prophecy historized and NOT history prophecied. Since the early Christians were a spin off of Judaism, what better way to win them over to Jesus than to show their very scriptures predicted him by using them to write the Jesus story. This technique, not understood by Western Christians and probably disturbing to them if they did is how we get the idea that the Old Testament propehcied everything in Jesus birth and death , down to his final words (Psalm 22) , earthquakes, darkness and resurrection.
The fact is that no one knew either the actual birth circumstances of Jesus, not the date nor the place, nor the events surrounding it, nor those of his death. Try harmonizing the two Gospel accounts of Jesus birth and four of Jesus death and see how far you get. They are not eyewitness accounts. They are cobbled and woven form Old Testament scriptures that originally did not mean what New Testament authors made them mean. It was a writing style of the times but not literally true.