Pro-Trump pastor Robert Jeffress on Friday said "it's hypocritical" for people like Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiNegotiators hit gas on coronavirus talks as frustration mounts Hillicon Valley: NSA warns of new security threats | Teen accused of Twitter hack pleads not guilty | Experts warn of mail-in voting misinformation Schiff, Khanna call for free masks for all Americans in coronavirus aid package MORE (D-Calif.) to say she prays for President TrumpDonald John TrumpMark Kelly clinches Democratic Senate nod in Arizona Trump camp considering White House South Lawn for convention speech: reports Longtime Rep. Lacy Clay defeated in Missouri Democratic primary MORE.

"When you have been under nonstop attack for the last three years from people who want to destroy you and your family, it’s a little hard to hear them say, ‘I want to pray for you,’” Jeffress, the pastor of First Baptist Dallas and a member of Trump's Evangelical Advisory Board, told ABC News

Trump's remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast this week have been criticized by detractors who say he contradicted the Bible. 


"I don’t like people who use their faith as justification for doing what they know is wrong. Nor do I like people who say ‘I pray for you’ when they know that’s not so," Trump said at the National Prayer Breakfast on Thursday. 

He also responded to the prior speaker at the prayer breakfast, Arthur Brooks, who urged Washington leaders to follow the biblical command to “love your enemies.” The president replied, “Arthur, I don’t know if I agree with you.”

Jeffress told ABC that Trump "was completely right in what he said." 

"This president, he absolutely hates phoniness; he can smell it a mile away," Jeffress said in a separate appearance on Fox News's "Fox & Friends" on Friday. "The president thinks there's something inherently phony about saying you're praying for him when you're working to destroy him."

He added that "the Bible supports his skepticism," citing James 3:10, which reads, according to the New International Version, "Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be."

Pelosi, who also attended the breakfast, defended her prayers for Trump.

“He really needs our prayers," she said after the event. "So he can say whatever he wants, but I do pray for him and I do so sincerely and without anguish, gently, that’s the way I pray for everybody else.”

Jeffress also supported Trump's comments about not loving his enemies, saying he told Trump this week: "Mr. President, to love your enemies means to want God's best for them, but it doesn't mean you're going to be unified with them. Truth divides people."

Jeffress also criticized Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyNRCC poll finds McBath ahead of Handel in Georgia Unemployment debate sparks GOP divisions Senate GOP divided over whether they'd fill Supreme Court vacancy  MORE's (R-Utah) vote for Trump's impeachment. Romney, before becoming the only Republican to vote to convict Trump on Wednesday, said "God demanded it of me."

Jeffress told ABC that Romney's vote “seems more based on self-promotion than religious beliefs.”

Romney, a devout Mormon, has previously called Jeffress a "religious bigot" due to his comments about Jews and Mormonism.

Jeffress on Fox predicted that evangelicals would continue to be strong supporters of Trump in November, saying "impeachment has not diminished" but has "mobilized his evangelical base."

"I've told the president lately that I believe that evangelical turnout in 2020 will be greater than even the historic turnout in 2016, which was 81 percent. I believe it's going to be a landslide," he told Fox.