While there's a lot of importance to be said about missionary linguistics and probably about his role in it, I'm not going to deal with that now. I have far less significant stuff in mind.
The NYT did a long obit on Nida (here). They laid out his contribution to translation as being in his “dynamic equivalence” or “functional equivalence” approach, that is, the effort to provide idiomatic translations rather than literal, word-by-word ones. I don't know the history of translation at all, but he certainly wasn't the first to do this by any stretch. But again, my purpose is a lower one.
The obit ends with this note:
Translated back into English, some of the Bible passages produced using Mr. Nida’s method yield a resonant poetry. As The New York Times reported in a 1955 article about his work, “‘I am sorrowful’ gets a variety of translations for tribes within a small area of central Africa: ‘My eye is black,’ ‘My heart is rotten,’ ‘My stomach is heavy’ or ‘My liver is sick.’”Is this a print instance of what some now call 'BabelFish humor'? Or a sophisticated statement about metaphor and language change (since it's within a small region)? I'm going with colonialist-era exoticization of languages/cultures readers don't have any clue about.