I interpret the expression 'If P then Q' as asserting that if P is true Q is automatically true. So, we would say 'If P then Q' is true only when it indeed is the case that P being true implies Q is true. However, in logic, the truth of 'If P then Q' is determined solely on the basis of the truth values of P and Q individually and not by verifying whether Q follows from P, or is implied by P.
So I just don't get how we can decide the truth of if-then statements by just looking at the truth values of P and Q. For it to be true don't we need to prove somehow that the truth of Q follows from the truth of P?
In one of the logic books that I read, they explained conditional statements in this manner: 'If P then Q' asserts that it is not the case that P is true and Q is false. I liked this. It makes me understand the truth table of conditional statements well. However, by this explanation, I'm not able to see why would one use the words 'If then' then. How the idea that it is not the case that P is true and Q is false follows from the meaning of words 'if then' (or 'implies' for that matter).
Should I completely forget about the meaning of if-then sentences as used in ordinary language and assign them a new meaning?