Isaac Asimov was a prolific writer, cranking out around 500 books, which have been published in 9 of the 10 main categories of the Dewey Decimal System.  My understanding is that he was a non-observant Jew.  He had the head knowledge, but not the heart for it.

He published a guide to the Bible (originally published in two parts – you figure it out), and even titled a story “That thou art mindful of him“.  The story is about interaction between robots and humans, but the quote is from the Bible.  Psalm 8:4, from the KJV:

What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?

A nice verse, and it points forward to the Son of Man, Jesus.  Here’s the section from the NIV:

what is man that you are mindful of him,
the son of man that you care for him?

You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings
and crowned him with glory and honor.

You made him ruler over the works of your hands;
you put everything under his feet:

all flocks and herds,
and the beasts of the field,

the birds of the air,
and the fish of the sea,
all that swim the paths of the seas.

Jesus has dominion over everything.  He owns it, and rules it.  He commands fig trees to die, and fish to give up money.  The passage is about Him, prophetically.

Or is it?  Check out the same passage from a different translation:

what are mere mortals that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them?

You have made them a little lower than the heavenly beings
and crowned them with glory and honor.

You made them rulers over the works of your hands;
you put everything under their feet:

all flocks and herds,
and the animals of the wild,

the birds in the sky,
and the fish in the sea,
all that swim the paths of the seas.

See?  It’s about all of humanity.  We, you and I, we have glory and honor, inherently bestowed upon every one of us by God.  We are rulers over the works of God’s hands – the forest fires in California, Hurricane Katrina, and global warming cooling warming cooling.  The animals of the wild – including yellow jackets – are under my very feet.  I command the birds of the sky and tell them where to go.

No, I don’t.  And neither do you.  That translation of the Bible is Today’s NIV, the gender-neutral version that came out about four years ago.  There was a big outrage from the conservatives, because the International Bible Society took scripture that was plain and obfuscated it, changing its meaning.

Well, they finally had enough, and capitulated on the gender-neutral junk.  It’s going to take them a couple years to get it done.  That’s not surprising, since someone has documented over three thousand places where masculine nouns and pronouns have vanished.

Other things vanishing are the “original” NIV – it won’t be published after the new version comes out.  And the International Bible Society, which translated the NIV and holds the copyright, has transformed itself into Biblica.

I’m not real hopeful, though, for this new translation.  The press release for the 2011 version starts out

The global board of Biblica today announced its intention to update the New International Version (NIV) of the Bible, the first time it has been revised since 1984.

Downplaying the 2005 TNIV I could understand.  Trying to make it disappear, to make it “didn’t happen”?  Doesn’t sit well with me.