Moses was 120 years old when he passed the reins of leadership to Joshua. He was forty years a prince of Egypt, forty years a shepherd of Midian and forty years leading Israel out of Egypt and through the wilderness. Now his job was finished. Moses, the Lawgiver and the Levite, had led Israel to the Promised Land, but Joshua, the faithful servant of Moses, from the tribe of Judah, was the one to lead them into it.
Two spiritual types are seen in these two men. Moses represents God’s law. And Joshua, whose name means, “Jehovah’s salvation,” represents Jesus (essentially the same name in Hebrew: Joshua – “Yehoshua” and Jesus – “Yeshua”). The law can only lead one to salvation, but is powerless to save. Whereas, Jesus saves.
The apostle Paul described this relationship between law and Christ (i.e. “grace”). He said that the law was like a “tutor” leading us to our need for Christ (Gal. 3:24), but was “powerless” to save us. Therefore, God sent Jesus.
“For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering” (Rom. 8:3).