Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz on Thursday told an audience of social conservatives to pray that the Supreme Court doesn't strike down gay marriage bans.

The high court's current term ends on Tuesday, and it is expected to hand down a ruling in a case challenging bans in four states on or before that date. The court's decision could strike down the nation's 13 remaining bans, leading to nationwide marriage equality.

“Religious liberty is under assault,” Texas' junior senator told members of the Faith and Freedom Coalition.

“I would encourage everyone here to be lifting up in prayer the court that they not engage in an act of naked and lawless judicial activism, tearing down the marriage laws adopted pursuant to the constitution,” Cruz said.

Cruz also touched on recent controversies in Indiana and Arkansas where governors backtracked on their support for legislation that critics said would allow businesses to discriminate against gay men and lesbians.

“Today's Democratic Party, aided by their friends in the media, and aided even more by big business that decided it was good business to throw Christians overboard and abandon religious liberty, pounded upon leaderships there,” he said.

“I'll tell you what was saddest: Just how many Republicans ran for the hills. More than a few Republicans, sadly even more than a few Republicans running for president in 2015, chose that moment somehow to go and rearrange their sock drawer,” Cruz added.