Jesus the Messiah, the Son of David, was born in Bethlehem.
The Messiah was foretold to be born in Bethlehem, by the prophet Micah.
In order for Jesus to be born in Bethlehem, his parents needed to travel from their residence in Nazareth to Bethlehem. But why would they travel while pregnant? To partake in the census decreed by Caesar Augustus.
The reason Joseph and Mary had to go to Bethlehem to partake in the census was because they were descendants of David, and Bethlehem was the city of David.
The reason Bethlehem was known as David’s city was because he was born there and because of his role in the history of Israel, as king and as ancestor of the Messiah to come. The events leading up to how David came to be born in Bethlehem are detailed in the book of Ruth.
So Boaz took Ruth, and she became his wife, and he went in to her. And the LORD enabled her to conceive, and she gave birth to a son. Ruth 4: 13
Then Naomi took the child and laid him in her lap, and became his nurse. The neighbor women gave him a name, saying, “A son has been born to Naomi!” So they named him Obed. He is the father of Jesse, the father of David. Now these are the generations of Perez: to Perez was born Hezron, and to Hezron was born Ram, and to Ram, Amminadab, and to Amminadab was born Nahshon, and to Nahshon, Salmon, and to Salmon was born Boaz, and to Boaz, Obed, and to Obed was born Jesse, and to Jesse, David. Ruth 4: 16 – 21
Many may be inclined to read the book of Ruth and marvel at the morality of Ruth and of Boaz or at the beauty of their love story. But the story behind the story – the greater story – is how the events detailed in Ruth prepared the way for the birth of the Messiah in Bethlehem, a birth and a birthplace that fulfilled prophecy.