What is meant by the thought that Rome is the Antichrist? I have been living in Rome now for 30 years and they are all very nice people.
When you look at the Image in Dan 2 and 7--you see the last universal empire is Rome. Pagan Rome turns to Papal Rome (the iron and clay mixture of the toes)
It is not the Italian people, but the Roman Catholic Church --the false Christ. The Pope claims to be God on earth, the Vicar of Christ, the Holy Father--titles that he should not take, they don't belong to him.
The Catholic Church claims to be the only way of salvation (not Jesus)--they have pagan doctrines of Purgatory, Immaculate conception, assumption of Mary, Call Mary the Mediatrix (only Christ is the mediator), they have rosaries (prayer beads), scapulars, idols, forbid to marry, make holy days that are not scriptural, change dates and times, masses where they actually sacrifice Jesus on a daily basis (which makes void the scripture that Jesus died once for sin).
Anti--does not mean always against, but instead, a counterfeit or substitution.
The word for Jesus' ransom sacrifice is "anti-lutron"--it means corresponding price. Jesus was the corresponding price for Adam. As in Adam all die, so in Christ shall all be made alive. For as sin came by one man, so life comes by one man, Jesus." Jesus' sacrifice is subsitutionary atonement. He takes the place of Adam.
So, when we look at anti-Christ. We need to look at who is substituting themselves in the place of Christ. Throughout the Dark Ages (when the Catholic Church murdered and tortured anyone who didn't agree with them), Christians clearly identified the church at Rome as the Man of Sin, the Anti-Christ. All the Reformers identified her also as the Woman who rides the Beast. It is only now that Christians are buying into the Catholic version of the Antichrist as being a Jew or even Satan himself as the fulfillment. They throw that interpretation out there to throw it off of them.
Revelation shows us that the head (power) that the beast (Papacy) had was wounded unto death (this happened by the French Revolution when the Pope was taken prisoner and died in prison, Napoleon crowned himself King more than once), but we find out that the head (power) of the beast (Papacy) gets healed. We see the Pope being more prominent now. We are also told that it will again attempt to wear out the saints. (like it did in the Inquisition when it hunted and murdered Protestants). This time is also described in Revelation as the hour of power with the beast. This is the universal government that everyone is talking about. It doesn't last long, but it will be very vicious to weed out anyone who doesn't agree with it.
This is also the fulfillment of the parable of the Wheat and the Tares. The wheat are left in the field because they will not take the mark of the Beast. Those that do, will be bundled together. The Wheat will be taken--that is they will be changed in a twinkling of an eye when they are put to death by the AntiChrist system of power.