God’s giving always follows His forgiving. God does more than pardon us, if pardoning is simply the non-infliction of penalty. God does more than that! He loves!
That’s what makes the parable of the Prodigal Son so great, even better than the two parables that introduce it (Lost Sheep/Lost Coin). The lost son was pardoned and then capable of receiving greater gifts than he had before.
He received a robe, ring, shoes and feast. The robe parallels to “putting off the old man, putting on the new.” See also Revelation 19:8 as well.
The prodigal just wanted to return to as a slave but his father gave him a ring. The ring is an emblem of wealth, position, honor. It is a sign of delegated authority like the Pharoah’s signet-ring was placed on Joseph’s ring. So the son went as low as possible but restoration was possible to highest dignity.
What about the shoes? Is that just drapery?
God does prepare us for future service and for every step they have to take. It starts with forgiving our past which gives us power to live the future.
And the feast? Remember what drove the son back: not his heart or conscience, but his stomach. Even so low a motive is accepted by God!
He had to learn that he could not get bread on his own terms, and that what he wished most was not what he needed first. He had to be forgiven before he can be fed.