Guys can be very insecure about how appealing they are to the opposite sex and may have a tough time figuring out how you feel right off the bat. To get a sense of how irresistible you find his studliness, he may throw some things out there...just to see where you stand. If he says he likes you and you beam with elation and declare how much you like him too, well now he knows! If you look freaked, well then he knows he needs to try a little harder to win you over. The guy isn't necessarily lying to you, I mean, if he's taking you out he obviously feels something...he might just be exaggerating just how much of that something he's actually feeling. (More: Ask a Guy: Does My Boyfriend Mean What He Says?)
In my situation, I put way too much weight on what he said and happily accepted them as complete truths. As a result, I started to approach the relationship differently. My thoughts and attitudes had changed in accordance with the things he said and, as evidenced by his disappearing act, we were never on the same page like I thought.
To avoid being blind-sided by a guy who seemed so smitten in the beginning, only to disappear soon after, take everything he says in the beginning with a grain of salt and respond with half a grain of sugar. He tells you he likes you, put a plug in your bursting elation. Instead, smile and say "aw, thanks, that's so sweet!" Or say nothing and just grab his hand and give him a sweet peck on the cheek. This shows him that those fuzzy feelings are reciprocated without giving away to what extent. (More: 5 Things Every Girl needs to Know About Guys)
It really isn't possible to truly like or love someone early on. You may feel intrigued, you may feel infatuated, but rarely will you know someone profoundly enough to develop genuine feelings that go beyond the physical and into the emotional. You'll know when a guy truly has feelings for you because it will come at a point when he would never conceive of just disappearing and leaving you hanging on with one arm and scratching your head with the other.