Speaking in tongues is one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, and perhaps I can help you understand how it all works.
- First > The Lord Jesus Christ is the Baptizer (Jn 1:33 And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.) The Lord our God is also a gentleman, and will not take you where you do not ask Him. Asking is usually required to receive the Holy Spirit (Lk 11:13 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?) I have heard of cases where someone did not ask, but was baptized as a sovereign act of God, and began to speak in tongues, but that is rare.
- Second > WE do the speaking as the Holy Spirit gives the utterance. In other words, we actually do the speaking in cooperation with the Holy Spirit, and the anointing does NOT come from your mind, but rather from your spirit, deep inside of you. In fact, you can speak in tongues and read a book at the same time, because the Holy Spirit is not using your mind for the words. Or you can speak in tongues and be thinking other thoughts or Scripture. (Acts2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.)
- Third > The language can not be “foreknown” since we speak in mysteries to God. (1 Cor 14:2 For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries.)
- Fourth > You can not speak in two languages at once, so when you yield to the Holy Spirit, you will be speaking in an “unknown” tongue for you. It may sound like gibberish, but the Holy Spirit has 1000’s of different languages and no one can say this is right or wrong language for you. ( 1 Cor 12 on the gifts, wide variety, but baptism in Holy Spirit opens the door to the rest)
- Fifth > The promise of the Holy Spirit (Jn 14-17 …recommend reading all of it) is unto ALL whom the Lord calls (Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. 39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.) In other words, people of the world can not receive this gift. Only the called ones qualify. Also, Acts 1:4.
- Sixth > It takes an act of faith to receive, but God will give you exactly what you ask for, according to the Word of God. He will not give you a stone, if you ask for bread.
- Seven > There is much more on this subject that can be discussed, such as “multiplicity” of tongues, but that is for another time. Also, the book of Acts explains that someone can receive by the laying on of hands.
Main Scriptures > 1 Cor 13, 1 Cor 14, Lk 11:13, Acts 1-2, 8, 10. Jn 1, 14 thru 17.
You shall receive power, after that the Holy Spirit is come upon you. (Free gift)
Acts 1:4 On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: "Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about.
5 For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit."