Regarding some of the things in the New Testament writings that have been taken as mere Biblical principles, such as honesty, consider this: If we were to hear those statements in view of the connected demands as to our new life in Christ, the idea of attempting to constantly review every possible principle in order to do the right thing would never fly. As we have truly been set free in Christ, honesty makes the demand from within us to live in accordance with this life.
The lying voice of the world around us would have us live in accordance with its own confusion and evil desires. For those who live by the flesh continually demand that we adopt their reasoning and rationale, and it is within this perception that we have learned to twist declarations of freedom into meager principles we are now expected to perform as Christians. However, this is a futile quest, as within this natural-minded perception the cards are stacked against us. Make no mistake about it, for in this framework we are expected to fail. After all, the lie stands upon a process by which one strives to establish a continually improving ratio of success in order to be regarded as having achieved the virtue in question.
Those who live by the Spirit hear the encouragement to stand fast in their true life in the midst of a twisted and perverted world. For those in the darkness would have us believe that we share in that darkness, when in fact we are sharers in the light. To deal honestly with those around us is to deal with them according to the truth we have been re-created in, the life that is always testifying from within us. To not deal honestly is to pretend along with the confused and darkened mind of the those who live accordingly. The lie is so prevalent and so carefully constructed that we easily overlook just how much effort and intensity it takes to keep up the act. And then we let the pretentious mind convince us that to live in accordance to our true life in Christ is merely pretense. Cunning is the mind of the liar, is it not?