[Samuel Rutherford] argued for a distinction betweeen the objective external revelation inscripturated in the canon and the internal subjective revelation, which we would call "illumination." In addition, Rutherford also recognized two other subjective types of revelation: false prophecies-which are not prophecies at all-and predictive prophecy. He said he knew of men "who have foretold things to come even since the ceasing of the Canon of the word," mentioning Hus, Wycliff, and Luther as examples.
Rutherford offered guidelines for differentiating between true and false prophecy: First, these postcanonical prophets "did tye no man to beleeve their prophecies as scriptures. Yea they never denounced Iudgement against those that beleeve not their predictions"; second, "the events reveled to Godly and sound witnesses of Christ are not contrary to the word"' and third, "they were men sound in the faith opposite to Popery, Prelacy, Socinianism, Papism, Lawlesse Enthusiasme, Antinomianisme, Arminianisme, and what else is contrary to sound doctrine. (from Rutherford's "A Survey of the Spirituall Antichrist")
In the light of Rutherford's belief about revelation, the line "new revelations of the Spirit" [in WCF 1.6] may be understood to refer to non-canonical but actual utterances that are subordinate to and judged by Scripture, and which may not be added to the canon. Canon, not prophecy, is the issue.
The mention of "private spirits" [in WCF 1.10] does not reject them out of hand, it merely subjects them to the authority of Scripture along with "all decrees of councils, opinions of ancient writers, doctrines of men." Thus, when the WCF speaks of "those former ways of God's revealing His will unto His people now being ceased," it should not necessarily be interpreted to indicate that God no longer reveals himself in any extraordinary way but to indicate that the canon is closed and that it alone is the rule of faith and practice. At least this is how Rutherford understood it. When the Confession refers to "the direct communication which once was" and "the indirect communication which now is," is this a distinction between "revelation" and "illumination" or between canon and all other revelation? The former was committed "wholly unto writing" (Confession 1.1), but such prophecies as those given in Corinth were not all deposited in the canon-though of the Spirit, they were not of the deposit of faith. Rutherford's understanding as a framer certainly leaves open alternative interpretations of the Confession than the prevailing cessationist interpretation today. pages 168-170