The role played by time at the beginning of the universe is, I believe, the final key to removing the need for a Grand Designer, and revealing how the universe created itself. … Time itself must come to a stop. You can’t get to a time before the Big Bang, because there was no time before the Big Bang. We have finally found something that does not have a cause because there was no time for a cause to exist in… In an unchanging universe a beginning in time is something that has to be imposed by some being outside the universe. One could still imagine that God created the universe at the instant of the Big Bang, or even afterwards in just such a way as to make it look as though there had been a big bang. … An expanding universe does not preclude a creator, but it does place limits on when he might have carried out his job!
– Stephen Hawking