Physicist Stephen Hawking has always had a somewhat squishy view of God. The author of books like God Created The Integers, he always seemed to be on the fence, saying that science and religion weren’t incompatible without admitting that he didn’t believe in a higher power. In a book called The Grand Design, Hawking said God was “no longer necessary” because we knew so much about the origins of the universe… but, again, that wasn’t a definitive statement.
In a 2007 interview, Hawking also said:
“I believe the universe is governed by the laws of science,” he said. “The laws may have been decreed by God, but God does not intervene to break the laws.”
It was a very politician-y approach, with him trying not to alienate religious people from the beauty of science.
“Before we understand science, it is natural to believe that God created the universe. But now science offers a more convincing explanation. What I meant by ‘we would know the mind of God’ is, we would know everything that God would know, if there were a God, which there isn’t. I’m an atheist.“
I’m not sure who still thought Hawking was a believer, but at least the matter is finally settled.