I find it odd that men from the east of Jerusalem were able to figure out that Christ had been born, when so few Jews were able to figure this out. How were they able to get knowledge of this when most of the Jews did not know?
My guess is that the wise men were from Babylon. Daniel made his prophecies in Babylon and the Babylonians kept good records of the things he wrote. The wise men of Babylon studied their historical records on a regular basis, and thus were able to learn lessons from the past, and in the case of valid prophecy learn about the future as well.
Why did the Jews not know this information? Probably for the same reasons so many Christians fall into error today,they did not take time to study the scriptures. Notice I did not say read the scriptures. Some people read a verse here and a verse there and call it a day, but when you study the scriptures you have to take care to learn what you are reading about. The Bible isn’t cake to splurge in once a week, it is bread for someone with allergies. You need it every day, but you need to take great care when reading it. If someone with allergies messes up when reading an ingredients list it can kill them. It may take more then a few minutes to kill you if you mess up reading the scriptures, but ultimately it can do great harm if you use it wrong. Even Satan can quote scripture, it takes a child of God to study it and use it to improve both your earthly and eternal life.
Don’t just read the scriptures, study and cherish them!