These "latest" findings are hardly all that recent. Such portrayals of Jesus have been fairly common since the nineteenth century. These portrayals generally reveal more about the scholar and his or her presuppositions than they do about Jesus. I. Howard Marshall; a New Testament Professor at the University of Aberdeen Scotland, in his book, I Believe in the Historical Jesus, warns that the word, "historical," when attached to Jesus is often a loaded term. It is used in a specialized sense which may trap the unwary. It does not mean simply ‘Jesus as he really was’ but rather ‘Jesus as the ordinary man that he must have been.’”
It is laughable to think that Jesus’ disciples, to whom he meant so much, would remember so few of his words or distort them as much as the "Jesus Seminar" represents. This is not to say that the gospel portrayals are 100% accurate in all the details of Jesus’ words or actions. Obviously they are not; they do not even completely agree among themselves about all the details. Too much should not be made of this. To again quote Marshall:
...the strength of the historical argument for Christianity is that of a piece of chain mail rather than that of a single chain. There are ever so many historical facts involved in the self-revelation of God in biblical history as a whole and in Jesus in particular, and the uncertainty of some of these does not cast doubt on the certainty of the others. To call one fact, or even several, about Jesus into question does not mean that other facts about him are also doubtful. The fact that a movie film may contain a number of badly-focused or poorly-lit frames does not mean that the film as a whole is faulty or that the general sequence of the story is necessarily unintelligible. The possibility that every important fact about Jesus could be convincingly denied is highly remote.
©C. David Hess