What caused God to create the Universe?

It wouldn't be much of an inquiry if you swept reason off the table. Oh. I see. That's your plan. Carry on.
More lazy snarky put downs designed to inflate the "incredibly clever" ego of the poster while contributing nothing of any intellectual value. That is, the forum equivalent of jerking off in public.
Our reason cannot tell us where reality came from.
It does seem likely that human reason is too small a business to ever fully grasp the nature of reality.
To try to use reason is pointless because it inevitably comes from commonsense and the universe does not necessarily follow commonsense.
Well, using reason is not pointless if in doing so we come to better understand the limits of reason. I agree the universe does not necessarily comply with the rules of human reason.
We must use new ideas based on faith to really allow us to understand.
Hmm... This seems the equivalent of, we don't know, so let's make something up. How is that "understanding"?

What caused God to create the Universe?
In a word, Probability

How might such an inquiry be advanced once we've swept both reason and faith off the table?
It wouldn't be much of an inquiry if you swept reason off the table. Oh. I see. That's your plan. Carry on. Our reason cannot tell us where reality came from. To try to use reason is pointless because it inevitably comes from commonsense and the universe does not necessarily follow commonsense. We must use new ideas based on faith to really allow us to understand.Sure it follows commonsense. Commonsense tells us the sun will rise tomorrow and lo and behold, for 4 billion years it's been right! And when faith was pushed out of the way to make room for reason, scientists figured out why it always comes up. But you know what, I'll play along. Yes we should use faith based new ideas. I'll start: I have complete and total faith that the voice in my head telling me the universe came from a tiny little mustard seed is right. There's a new idea. Now if you personally believe what you say about faith being a good starting place, private message me your address and I'll send you an invoice for a faith based project I have in mind to prove my faith based idea is right. And as soon as I receive your money I'll begin. Dumb filter sentence here.
It wouldn't be much of an inquiry if you swept reason off the table. Oh. I see. That's your plan. Carry on.
More lazy snarky put downs designed to inflate the "incredibly clever" ego of the poster while contributing nothing of any intellectual value. That is, the forum equivalent of jerking off in public. Trying to ignore your outburst and contribute to the thread. Consider DesCartes thought experiment; Are we not what we think we are, but instead being controlled by an evil demon? Or the modern version; do we live in the Matrix? Either way, you prove your own existence because you can have the thought. You can look at all the input you get and organize it, determine what is predictable and what isn't and build on the data you acquire. Those are the tools of reason, it's all we got really. If the demon is so powerful that you aren't thinking those thoughts yourself and aren't increasing your understanding through further study, but instead you just think you are, then it doesn't matter, then you don't exist as something other than a completely controlled thing and there's nothing you can do about it. But even if that were the case, there's no reason to stop trying to determine if that's true. You are no worse off for your attempt to declare yourself into existence. Regardless of what reasoning can or cannot accomplish, I know of no better tool, or even any other tool.
1. Everything that begins to exist has a cause.
You know my hippy dippy higher level thought of late, in reaction to the various aspects of christian wavy gravy bandied about here recently. Consider quantum mechanics - virtual particles are always popping into and out of existence. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/are-virtual-particles-rea/ for real. Add to that my fascination in recognizing fractals https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dZM45mfJQ40 throughout nature and behavior. This one was inevitable, don't know what took so long. Fractals not just in what we see, but also the broader patterns in life, folds within folds of cumulative harmonic complexity cascading down the stream of time.. Our human lives are an echo of that same theme started way back and still going on at a quantum level. We pop out of nothing, into exist, live our lives, and then pop back out of existence. At least we humans are remembered for a little while before that too will return to the primal soup. Most importantly, the fundamental mathematics of the fractal function are very simple, which IMO makes it a candidate as a Universal constant.

This lecture by Benoit Mandelbrot may be of interest;
https://www.ted.com/talks/benoit_mandelbrot_fractals_the_art_of_roughness
The Mandelbrot set based on this simple formula; z → z^2 + c
All those fantastical shapes and forms can be formed by the application of this simple formula.

Trying to ignore your outburst and contribute to the thread.
Ok good, thanks. Let's both try to do that, as nobody is interested in our ego or emotions.
Regardless of what reasoning can or cannot accomplish, I know of no better tool, or even any other tool.
Assuming this is true, it doesn't automatically equal reason being qualified to address the very largest of questions, often the scope of religious claims. If faith is not qualified to arrive at meaningful conclusions at such a scale, and reason isn't either, then what? The topic can still be explored in the realm of experience. As example, see the DMT thread. http://www.centerforinquiry.net/forums/viewthread/19374/ A big obstacle in the inquiry is that both theists and atheists seem to agree that the point of the inquiry should be to develop knowledge, symbolic constructions which represent reality as accurately as possible. That foundational assumption is not a law of nature, but is better described as wishful thinking. That's clearly a useful methodology for many inquiries, but it doesn't automatically follow it is for this one too.
Trying to ignore your outburst and contribute to the thread.
Ok good, thanks. Let's both try to do that, as nobody is interested in our ego or emotions.
Regardless of what reasoning can or cannot accomplish, I know of no better tool, or even any other tool.
Assuming this is true, it doesn't automatically equal reason being qualified to address the very largest of questions, often the scope of religious claims. If faith is not qualified to arrive at meaningful conclusions at such a scale, and reason isn't either, then what? The topic can still be explored in the realm of experience. As example, see the DMT thread. http://www.centerforinquiry.net/forums/viewthread/19374/ A big obstacle in the inquiry is that both theists and atheists seem to agree that the point of the inquiry should be to develop knowledge, symbolic constructions which represent reality as accurately as possible. That foundational assumption is not a law of nature, but is better described as wishful thinking. That's clearly a useful methodology for many inquiries, but it doesn't automatically follow it is for this one too. Explaining why it is probable that we are approaching an accurate representation of reality takes a little more time, not sure I'll finish this one. To respond to the above, I don't think I made a claim that human ability to reason is up to the task. I only said I know of nothing better. In answer to "then what?", all I have is, "be human". Altering your mind, knowingly distorting your ability to perceive, is not the answer. Building on DesCartes, but recognizing his limitations, we are faced with an assertion that we exist. If we don't, it's a strange virtual reality indeed, where ideas are stored as thoughts of ancient philosopher and left on clay tablets for others to discover, others that may not exist for all I know, except as stories books or on the radio. It's just too complex of a construction for me to consider it being NOT real, so I've abandoned that. So I start by accepting that there is some sort of physical reality and it has a high degree of cohesiveness, that is, the laws that govern it are the same everywhere and through time, starting after the Big Bang and allowing for Relativity. In that, it makes sense that for beings like me to operate, they need to perceive that reality well enough to get what they need from it. So we may not see the full light spectrum or see super tiny things or fully comprehend time, but we are experiencing whatever it is that is there.
Our reason cannot tell us where reality came from.
It does seem likely that human reason is too small a business to ever fully grasp the nature of reality.
To try to use reason is pointless because it inevitably comes from commonsense and the universe does not necessarily follow commonsense.
Well, using reason is not pointless if in doing so we come to better understand the limits of reason. I agree the universe does not necessarily comply with the rules of human reason.
We must use new ideas based on faith to really allow us to understand.
Hmm... This seems the equivalent of, we don't know, so let's make something up. How is that "understanding"? Well, even if we progress over the years and become incredibly knowledgeable, scientifically speaking, we will still essentially be in the same position as we are today inasmuch as not being able to answer where the universe originally came from. I'm not talking here about our spacetime universe that we are all familiar with but the universe in its widest sense, encompassing all the previous incarnations of the universe and, indeed, all the future possible ones. The point I'm making, I suppose, is that whenever we manage to answer one question we are presented with a whole bunch of others, so we never get to finally answer the question. In the end all we can do is hold a faith that somehow this has all been created by an unknowable force and leave it at that. Science is great but has limits.
Trying to ignore your outburst and contribute to the thread.
Ok good, thanks. Let's both try to do that, as nobody is interested in our ego or emotions.
Regardless of what reasoning can or cannot accomplish, I know of no better tool, or even any other tool.
Assuming this is true, it doesn't automatically equal reason being qualified to address the very largest of questions, often the scope of religious claims. If faith is not qualified to arrive at meaningful conclusions at such a scale, and reason isn't either, then what? The topic can still be explored in the realm of experience. As example, see the DMT thread. http://www.centerforinquiry.net/forums/viewthread/19374/ A big obstacle in the inquiry is that both theists and atheists seem to agree that the point of the inquiry should be to develop knowledge, symbolic constructions which represent reality as accurately as possible. That foundational assumption is not a law of nature, but is better described as wishful thinking. That's clearly a useful methodology for many inquiries, but it doesn't automatically follow it is for this one too. Explaining why it is probable that we are approaching an accurate representation of reality takes a little more time, not sure I'll finish this one. To respond to the above, I don't think I made a claim that human ability to reason is up to the task. I only said I know of nothing better. In answer to "then what?", all I have is, "be human". Altering your mind, knowingly distorting your ability to perceive, is not the answer. Building on DesCartes, but recognizing his limitations, we are faced with an assertion that we exist. If we don't, it's a strange virtual reality indeed, where ideas are stored as thoughts of ancient philosopher and left on clay tablets for others to discover, others that may not exist for all I know, except as stories books or on the radio. It's just too complex of a construction for me to consider it being NOT real, so I've abandoned that. So I start by accepting that there is some sort of physical reality and it has a high degree of cohesiveness, that is, the laws that govern it are the same everywhere and through time, starting after the Big Bang and allowing for Relativity. In that, it makes sense that for beings like me to operate, they need to perceive that reality well enough to get what they need from it. So we may not see the full light spectrum or see super tiny things or fully comprehend time, but we are experiencing whatever it is that is there. Well, we have to remember that whatever we see, hear, touch, taste, etc., it needs to pass through our 'perceptual filters, which means whatever causes such perceptions ends up being 'processed' by our biology and presents itself to us as 'reality.' Take a sound. The sound starts out as pressure waves but for us to actually perceive it as a 'sound' the waves need to pass though our complex of audio structures and eventually gets to stimulate some area in the brain to become a 'sound.' So, this means we can never really know what the original source of the sound was, at least not directly, therefore, we may conclude that what we term 'reality' is actually kind of 'subjective' because we always have to experience it via our 'antenna.' Maybe other lifeforms on others planets possess completely different antenna and perceive their environment in a completely different way to the way we do, making their 'reality' very different from ours. It all depends on the environment a lifeform evolves in. The demands of some environments may be such that a lifeform develops senses that are attuned to surviving in that particular set of conditions, which may be very different from ours, thus necessitating a radically different perception of reality from ours.
Well, we have to remember that whatever we see, hear, touch, taste, etc., it needs to pass through our 'perceptual filters, which means whatever causes such perceptions ends up being 'processed' by our biology and presents itself to us as 'reality.'
I covered that. And you don't need to go find aliens. Creatures right here on earth perceive things differently than we do.
Well, even if we progress over the years and become incredibly knowledgeable, scientifically speaking, we will still essentially be in the same position as we are today inasmuch as not being able to answer where the universe originally came from. I'm not talking here about our spacetime universe that we are all familiar with but the universe in its widest sense, encompassing all the previous incarnations of the universe and, indeed, all the future possible ones. The point I'm making, I suppose, is that whenever we manage to answer one question we are presented with a whole bunch of others, so we never get to finally answer the question.
I generally agree with you on the above.
In the end all we can do is hold a faith that somehow this has all been created by an unknowable force and leave it at that.
We don't actually need faith at all. We can simply say the truth that we don't know. And then, should we still be interested, we can proceed to explore what value might be found in that which we actually have, our ignorance. There is no requirement to come to any kind of answer, and it's logical not to do so given, as you say, the vast extent of our ignorance. What color socks am I wearing? You don't resort to faith in addressing this question, you simply admit you have no idea.
Well, we have to remember that whatever we see, hear, touch, taste, etc., it needs to pass through our 'perceptual filters, which means whatever causes such perceptions ends up being 'processed' by our biology and presents itself to us as 'reality.'
I covered that. And you don't need to go find aliens. Creatures right here on earth perceive things differently than we do. You, got that right! :-)
You don't resort to faith in addressing this question, you simply admit you have no idea.
Towering Mountain of Ignorance]

Just an idea. Knowledge is not the making of a Christian god. Knowledge should cover a broad spectrum of the subject being analyzed. Before there were deities and the written word, the gods said that earth was made from star dust and star dust was made from matter. And everything in the universe was made from matter. How the universe came to be, mankind may never know. Making this one of the oldest puzzles of thought known to mankind. We can only guess at how old these stories passed down from pre-history are. The question on the table for the last decade was not how was the universe made, but are there more than one universe?
Instead of looking for aliens. One should be asking, if the old stories are saying that today’s humans were domesticated (created), then who were the gods that created modern humans. Today’s thinking is that H. floresiensis derived from an early Indonesian H. erectus, which is currently accepted for expansion out of Africa. New hypothesis is coming out every few years now. One is saying that Homo erectus evolved around the same time as Home habilis. This suggests Homo floresiensis was a “sister species" of Homo habilis and the two likely shared a common ancestor. One big question today is did Homo erectua pekinensis descendants and fellow members of the species of Homo erectus die out or evolved into the modern species.
The point is that in the next decade we might have the questions.
Did modern humans evolve or were they domesticated?
Was the knowledge of evolving ancestors hyperthymesia?
The old pre-history stories talk about the problems of overpopulation, plagues and natural disasters. But no talk of wars or deities. Therefore, it is quite possible that with the control of knowledge by the deities came wars. Point being, if the religious entities with deities in the world went away, would the need for wars also disappear? You could still have religion and afterlife, just take away the deities, like it way in the past.
The deities do two major tasks. One is they control all knowledge. Two is they judge you. Without deities would the nations get along better? That does not seem to be the case in countries like Pakistan and India where there are still religions based upon the roots of the old pre-history religions. This gives more weight to the need to review the hyperthymesia hypothesis.

Point being, if the religious entities with deities in the world went away, would the need for wars also disappear?
First you got to get past the first reason people have wars - to take what some other people have.
Point being, if the religious entities with deities in the world went away, would the need for wars also disappear?
First you got to get past the first reason people have wars - to take what some other people have. Darwinian evolution and Natural selection already starts at the molecular level. A war which tends to absorb smaller structures into larger structures, as explained by Hazen in his lecture from Carnegie Institute of sciences. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TlAQLgTwJ_A (start viewing at 25:10 to avoid the lengthy introduction) At larger scales we could use Gravity as a form of natural warfare, drawing in and absorbing smaller objects into the larger more massive structure. As Hellstrom explained this analogy when applied to living organisms; "for life to exist, life must die" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7R8UN9zGD04&list=PLOd8HJhLiHIwhP65eYlAOovD4R61hGDJ1 p.s. The OP ask if God created the univers(es) past present and future, IOW, the wholeness of all that ever was, is , and will be.,How then can the question that yet a greater a priori power could have existed prior to this definitive statement. The question is a contradiction of terms to begin with. The question itself is just illogical self-contradictory nonsensical garbage from the onset.

@ CC,
I was pleasantly surprised by your mention and link to that excellent site of fractals in nature. It’s now in my favorites library.
The Fractal function has been one of my main areas of interest for a long time. This universal function seems to go all the way down to the very fabric of spacetime.
Have you checked out CDT (causal dynamical triangulation) yet?
If not, here is a small excerpt

Causal dynamical triangulation (abbreviated as CDT) theorized by Renate Loll, Jan Ambjørn and Jerzy Jurkiewicz, and popularized by Fotini Markopoulou and Lee Smolin, is an approach to quantum gravity that like loop quantum gravity is background independent.
This means that it does not assume any pre-existing arena (dimensional space), but rather attempts to show how the spacetime fabric itself evolves.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Causal_dynamical_triangulation

Well, even if we progress over the years and become incredibly knowledgeable, scientifically speaking, we will still essentially be in the same position as we are today inasmuch as not being able to answer where the universe originally came from. I'm not talking here about our spacetime universe that we are all familiar with but the universe in its widest sense, encompassing all the previous incarnations of the universe and, indeed, all the future possible ones. The point I'm making, I suppose, is that whenever we manage to answer one question we are presented with a whole bunch of others, so we never get to finally answer the question.
I generally agree with you on the above.
In the end all we can do is hold a faith that somehow this has all been created by an unknowable force and leave it at that.
We don't actually need faith at all. We can simply say the truth that we don't know. And then, should we still be interested, we can proceed to explore what value might be found in that which we actually have, our ignorance. There is no requirement to come to any kind of answer, and it's logical not to do so given, as you say, the vast extent of our ignorance. What color socks am I wearing? You don't resort to faith in addressing this question, you simply admit you have no idea. I take your point, but there seems to be something in human beings, at least some human beings, that needs to find some kind of answer to what it is all about. Science has done great at explaining why things are the way they are but science cannot answer everything. I think it is our spiritual need to find answers that drives all this.