Some animals are creatures of the night. They have special eyes that enable them to see in the dark. Cats and owls are like that – they can get around well in the night.
On the first day of Creation, God not only created the light, He also separated the light form the darkness. Then He called the light “day,” and the darkness He called, “night.” In Genesis 1:3-5 we read, “Then God said, ‘Let there be light”; and there was light. …And God called the light day, and the darkness He called night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day.”
So, the daylight hours were called “day and morning,” and the dark hours were called “night and evening.”
The word “night” is a Hebrew word lā·yə·lāh which, in a figurative sense, also means “adversity.” It comes from a root word that means “to fold back” like a spiral step that winds back upon itself. So, really the word “night” has the idea of twisting away from the light, as adversity is a twisting away from what is good.
Now, it is not that night is evil. There is no moral judgment placed upon the night. But it is a twisting away from the light, which God specifically called “good.” So, the night has become a symbol for evil, even though it is not evil in and of itself. The apostle Paul wrote this to the Thessalonians: “You are all sons of light and sons of day. We are not of night nor of darkness… For those who sleep do their sleeping at night, and those who get drunk get drunk at night.”
“And the darkness He called night.” Now you know the real meaning of the word.
Children are afraid of the dark because they have a sense that there is evil in the night.