US televangelist: Trump's critics are 'blaspheming'

High-profile conservative Christian preacher Jim Bakker has been slammed after suggesting those who criticise US President Donald Trump are "blaspheming", and claiming that selfies are "signs of the last days".

The 77-year-old, who was sentenced in 1988 to 45 years in prison for fraud charges but was released after just five following an appeal, is no stranger to controversy - but his remarks have been blasted for turning his faith into a political tool.

On The Jim Bakker Show on Monday (local time), he said people are "blaspheming Christianity, blaspheming Jesus, blaspheming the good that is done, [and] even blaspheming a President who wants to do good".

"[Mr Trump is] a President who wants to help us not bring drugs into the country, wants to stop murderers and rapists, and literally bring America back to a place where your kids can still walk the streets around your house at night," he said.

The US televangelist also quoted 2 Timothy 3:2, which says that in the end times, "people will be lovers of themselves" - and used that to justify his belief that the "billions" of selfies that have been taken are a sign that the rapture is imminent.

He has also come under fire for recently hosting conservative prophet Mary Colbert on his show, who claimed that anyone who opposes Mr Trump will see themselves and two generations after them cursed "like you have never seen".

"We know that [Donald Trump's] not necessarily perfect in every way that we would like - [but] that's not how God works. He works through the ones he chooses," she said.

"When you recognise a chosen one and you have the discernment to know that they've been chosen and know that that's the will of God, then your life will be blessed.

"And if you come against the chosen one of God, you are bringing upon you and your children and your children's children curses like you have never seen. It puts a holy fear in me."

Mr Bakker is a vocal Trump supporter, and has dedicated many of his shows to criticising and threatening those who oppose the former business mogul's administration.